Sunday, June 26, 2011

Glendalough and Lake Carlos State Parks + Inspiration Peak!

Last night a thunderstorm went through. While there was a good amount of lightning and thunder, we didn't get much rain. The sky was dark and gray though when I got out of the tent so I quickly ate breakfast and packed everything up to try and beat the rain. As I hit the road it looked lie rain was imminent. I started to wonder if it was a good idea to try and do some more hiking. Eventually I convinced myself that a hike in the rain, should it happen, would be a pleasant and welcome experience, and so I headed south again to Glendalough State Park.

The Hiking Club Trail at Glendalough makes a 3.3 mile loop around Annie Battle Lake.
Jenny Battle Lake

It was a pleasant hike, but to be honest I felt a bit bored by it. It just felt like the hikes this weekend were all too similar; a hike through deciduous woods and grassy areas, with a few lakes sprinkled in here and there. The gray sky and a stiff breeze blowing across the lake probably didn't lift my spirits that much either. The hike around Annie Battle lake did offer some pleasant woods to walk through and even a few wildflowers to look at.
Wildflowers


From Glandalough State Park I headed east to Inspiration Peak State Wayside. Inspiration Peak is a 400 foot tall glacial feature and the tallest natural point around for miles.
Inspiration Peak Sign

Author Sinclair Lewis praised "the enchanting peace and seclusion of this place for contemplation" and there is a nice view from the top.
Inspiration Peak View


After descending Inspiration Peak I headed south again to Lake Carlos State Park. The trail here stayed mostly in the woods.
Hiking Lake Carlos

I saw some interesting fungi growing on a tree trunk
Fungi

Fungi Patterns

and saw a few wildflowers like this bladderwort.
Bladderwort

Then it was the long drive back to Duluth.

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