I occasionally go hiking with a group at various spots in the local area. This is a great way to find out about new hiking spots to try out. It’s a fairly large group, and I can’t always keep up for the whole way. Since they’re day hikes, people only bring a small pack with water and snacks, and they usually plan on being back by lunch time.
I, on the other hand, am packing a 32 lb toddler on my back, and I haven’t been hiking weekly (or more) for very long. We go on walks around the neighborhood fairly frequently, which is better than nothing, but certainly not the same as walking on uneven and sometimes hilly terrain. Adding the additional weight of my daughter, and keeping up for very long is difficult, to say the least. But, we go anyway and just go slow, and/or turn around before the rest of the group. They’re all very nice, but they don’t really slow down for stragglers. The friend who started inviting me to go on these hikes tends to ride with me, and doesn’t mind slowing down or going back early.
Last Thursday we went up to Farragut State Park to hike in their trail system. I haven’t been hiking up there since I was in high school. It was a sunny spring day, perfect for hiking through the woods. Farragut is situated north of Coeur d’Alene on the section of Lake Pend O’Reille that extends into Kootenai county. The majority of the park is heavily treed, though there are a few areas that are more open. There are trails for hiking, mountain biking, and horse back riding. We started at the trail head just down the road from the Welcome Center. There is also a trail head at the Welcome Center. It does cost $5 per vehicle for a day pass, but you can buy an Idaho State Parks Pass through the DMV (for Idaho residents) that costs $10 for the year. So, if you plan on visiting an Idaho state park more than once, it’s a worthwhile investment.
The Farragut trail system has a good mix of flat and not-so-flat trails. Since I’m not prepared for rigorous hiking, we stayed on the flatter section. We stuck with the group as things started to go uphill, but turned back when we started feeling tired. Overall, we hiked around for around an hour and a half or so. My daughter was really wanting down, so I let her run around by the trail head for a while. We spent an enjoyable morning at the park and I definitely plan on going back again.