Fall is always my favorite time of year. I'm sure all the colors have something to do with it, and the cool fresh air kind of seals the deal. It's the need for a jacket that makes me feel warm inside and fills my head with hope for the future.
There could be nothing more spectacular than a fall hike at Hickory Canyon.
Even though the year is not over, for me, the fall brings on a need to reflect…sort of like a milestone of how I've done so far this year. (Hey, there’s still time left in this year to make adjustments!, right?) I've always thought that the New Year should start in October instead of January since the fall is the time of year I always seem to focus on self-analysis and resolutions.
Fall is a time of possibilities and change.
Fall is a time of possibilities and change. Business-wise, many companies are busy creating a budget for the new year while others are getting rid of excess budgets from the current year. Nature-wise, trees change from green to brilliant colors; you can't help but feel excitement in the air. From fall festivals and parades to wineries and music to outdoor sporting events—the fall brings out great entertainment opportunities. Fall hiking in the 573 is the best in the world, hands down. Our Ozark trails come to life in the fall like no other place on earth. Parks like Elephant Rocks, Trail of Tears, and Pickle Springs are some of the best. To be out in the fresh air surrounded by all the color of the trees, the beautiful unpolluted skies, the crystal clear streams, the colorful rocks... makes me want to be a better person and be more thankful for all I've been given in life.
The forest gives me no distractions, no Internet, no deadlines, no obligations... just me, the forest, and my thoughts.
Even though I won't be sitting on Sigmund Freud’s couch this fall, I will be sitting somewhere, maybe somewhere deep in a forest taking a look at myself and trying to figure out where I'm headed and what I really want. I mean, if you don't look inside, you can't get anywhere. The forest gives me no distractions, no Internet, no deadlines, no obligations... just me, the forest, and my thoughts. It will be my road less traveled. I'll take the time to remember old friends. I'll take the time to make a few plans. I'll take the time to make a few resolutions. I guess the fall is a yearly therapy session for me—a time to wonder and a time to self-analyze; and a time to remember all the opportunities that I sometimes take for granted; and a time to be thankful for family and friends.
Get out to Hickory Canyon. From 55 at Ste. Genevieve, go west on highway 32 to State Road C. Head north on C to Sprott Road where you’ll turn left. This is a gravel road, but easily passable with even the lowest sitting cars. Some three miles down the road you’ll come to a wide spot in the road where you can park.
When you first arrive at Hickory Canyon, take just a short walk to the trail head. There, you’ll be greeted with large wooden signs that map out the trail.
The hike begins with trails diverging on each side of the road. The southern trail, which takes you into Box Canyon, is short and somewhat steep. Don’t miss this one! At only .7 of a mile, this walk won’t wear you out but instead should rejuvenate your soul.
The cliff sides on this canyon are wrapped with ferns, creeping groundcover, and numerous trees which seem to grow out of the rocks themselves, stretching towards the sun 80 to 90 feet up the rim. At the end of Box Canyon is a waterfall (even in dry weather, as it was the day we visited), is another sight you won’t want to miss. The hike down and back takes just 15 to 20 minutes; the time you sit peeling the stress off your back could take hours. This is an unspoiled, secluded retreat.
I guess the fall is a yearly therapy session for me—a time to wonder and a time to self-analyze...
Our wish from all of us at the 573 Magazine to you is this: Get Out There and enjoy the wonderful gifts that are right in front of you. I guarantee it will make your day a whole lot brighter.