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Winter Hike at Chain O’ Lakes State Park

Lisa and I drove up to Chain of Lakes State Park today to do some winter hiking.  Cold day out, started sunny but ended cloudy.  Enjoyable hike, we did the yellow and the white trails. 

Winter hike at Illinois Chain of Lakes State park

Winter hike at Illinois Chain of Lakes State park

Saw some wildlife including a hawk which circled high overhead and screeched repeatedly.  Lisa saw some deer but I was behind her and missed them, though on the drive out a bunch crossed the road and bounded through the tall grass, erect white tails flashing with each huge bound.  Those guys can move.

Giant Pinecone

Giant Pinecone

  We discussed how amazing it is that they manage to eat and be active and outside all day and all night, all through the winter, regardless of weather.  Seems lots of animals hibernate, including of course the bear, but also some others that maybe you wouldn’t think about such as the Chipmunks, ground squirrels (also hide food – good strategy!), echidnas, possums, hedgehogs, hamsters, skunks, bats, prairie dogs, marmots, badgers for mammals, and for the cold-blooded folks I’ve read you can find species of lizards, frogs, toads, newts, snakes, turtles, and insects like bees that hibernate.  Glad I have a nice warm home to live in.

Hiked about 3.5 miles, got the heart pumping.  A bit of a long drive for an hour and a half, but good to explore.

View during Winter hike at Illinois Chain of Lakes State park

View during Winter hike at Illinois Chain of Lakes State park

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