Leech Lake

Trail Difficulty – Easy

Trail Type – Nature Trail/Snow

Distance – 8 miles

Elevation Gain – 300 Feet

Camera in hand we headed out for Hike 11 and the Weekly Photo Challenge; Two Subjects around Leech Lake.  This week I learned an important lesson about elevation.

It is getting more difficult to find long hikes with little elevation, so we had to drive  for almost an hour.  We picked a trail up in the mountains and headed out.

On the way we saw the only real wildlife of the trip, a trail of Bighorn Sheep doing their own hike. My Poor Long-Suffering Husband stayed in the car just in case the Alpaca from last week was with them.

Mountain goats, trail, hike, nature

Mountain Goats on the trail

After another 40 minutes we finally arrived at the trail head and realized our error. Dog Lake trail was buried under 10 feet of snow. You can barely see the sign peeking out at the top.

Trailhead, snow, buried

Entrance to the trailhead

Undeterred, we stopped in at the local ski lodge.  This is how I went snowshoeing for the first time in my life. The photo challenge this week was two subjects who are inter-related – I can’t think of two better subjects that me and him.

Snowshoe, hike, nature

My Poor Long-Suffering Husband and Me

The first quarter-mile went well, though it was much harder than walking; then my husband’s binding broke and he had to go back.  While waiting for him to return, I looked around for my photo challenge, then I saw it.  How often can you see the forest and the trees.

Forest, tree, hike, nature

Seeing the forest and the trees

We made it 2 miles before I gave up – elevation gain, a bad map, and the removal of the trail signs caused us to turn back. We still needed to hike 6 miles to meet our goal.  Driving back down the mountain, we saw this tree in the side of a cliff that someone had decorated with flamingos.  Really – flamingos.

flamingo, hike, nature, cliff

The Flamingo and the Tree

Heading back to where we went last week, convinced the Alpaca had moved on, we noticed something on the hillside. Getting out of the car we realized it was connected to the irrigation canal we walked along last week.  It rose up like Rapunzel’s tower on the side of the cliff.

water tower, carved, mountain, irrigation, hike

How water turns into irrigation

We split the hike up as we stopped at various sites.  Thank goodness for the Fitbit as we can track our distance. As we were leaving the last site I saw the following on a tree branch – I am not sure what it was, but it looked amazing.

Tree, moss, nature, hike

Parasite and host

It started to get dark, so we headed back to the car. It was a full day.

I can’t wait to see what happens next week.


24 thoughts on “Leech Lake

    • I would have liked them better if we didn’t keep getting lost 🙂 It was the last day of the season – I think we may have to get a pair next year.

      Overall is was easier than I thought.

  1. that sounds like determination and perseverance in full swing!

    love the photos … all of them interesting and a nice reflection of your journey. can’t believe you were even willing to strap on snow shoes to get that hike accomplished. an adventure before you even begin the hike. and the flamingos? kooky, but fun.

  2. Pingback: Week 19 – Summary « Stopping the Wind

    • Thank you Sharon – our challenge is that we are needing to drive to them for longer and longer periods of time. I am not sure how we are going to get eleven miles into one day of hiking. We are blessed with some great scenery.

  3. Pingback: Weekly photo challenge : “Two subjects” « Just another wake-up call

  4. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge: Two Subjects « El mundo a través del ojo de mi cámara

    • Thank you creativecrazyness, we are blessed with our location. The only thing that is far away is the ocean – but for the most part we are a day’s drive away from desert, forest, mountains…I feel like I just moved here! I ignored much of this most of my life – when I get out there I wonder why.

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