Thursday, November 12, 2015

Nov. 12, 2015 Illinois & Michigan Canal - Section of Buffalo Rock to Ottawa

Old Railroad Bridge

We changed the schedule a little bit for today's hike.  With the weather being as blustery as it was, we thought that a nice hike with the wind to our backs would be great.  The walker's drove their cars to the Illinois Michigan Canal parking lot off of Boyce Memorial Drive in Ottawa and I picked them up in the trolley and dropped them off at the Buffalo Rock I & M Canal Access.  We all walked back to the cars.  It was a nice change.  Most of us have not done this section of the Canal.  And the wind was to our back.  What is the saying..... Something about the wind at your back??? more later....
All 17 hikers and 1 dog, (Cocoa) just got dropped off from the trolley and we are heading out for a windy 3 mile hike.

3 miles to Ottawa

Only one tree across the path

.6 miles to what is left of Lock 12

This is what is left of the old railroad bridge.  They used this bridge when transporting coal when mining what is now part of Buffalo Rock State Park

Catalpa tree seed pods.  Sometimes called the Indian Bean tree or Cigar tree

Lock 12

There was actually quite a bit of beaver damage on the canal

Along the canal are these signs that tell visitors about the life on the Canal

Behind the Pampas Grass is U.S. Silica.  There really is a huge pile of sand back there that blends into the clouds.

What is left of Lock 11

Distances along the Canal

Since the trolley was still at the Buffalo Rock entrance, I had a choice of walking back (into the wind) (that wasn't happening) or catch a ride with someone going back to the Lodge.
I will leave you with this: May the road rise to meet you, may the wind be always at your back.  May the sunshine warm upon your face, the rains fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of his hand.

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