third week of october

bluffs at steel creek - buffalo national river

university of arkansas

the dickson street bookstore didn't disappoint

roasted potatoes
our home grown stash is dwindling! 
each potato dish is now savored knowing I'll purchase store bought soon,
and there is definitely a taste difference

morning in the boxley valley - buffalo national river

my favorite way to serve green beans
sauteed in olive oil with onions then sprinkled with sea salt

the hawksbill crag on the whitaker point trail - buffalo national river

raspberry, apple, cucumber smoothie

cobb cave on the lost valley trail - buffalo national river

a pretty view in our own yard

This third week of October was a mixture of the regular weekday routine and a short hiking trip to the Buffalo River. This trip hadn't been planned for long as we didn't realize we'd have an opening in our schedule to return to our favorite hiking place twice in the same year. I'll write more about the trails later. We were able to be on three trails and two we had previously hiked two years ago when we first experienced this area. Since we hiked them at a different time of year it was a different experience, but it was nice to be on a trail  previously hiked because there was now a familiarity with the area. When we first hiked here the kids were ages 9 and 11 and we've hiked so much since then that the distance and difficulty of the trails were minimal. It was great to see how far we've come in strength and perspective hiking as a family.

Having been to other national parks that are busy, it's always treasured to be in this nationally protected area not overrun with visitors. We were by no means the only ones there, there was a steady stream of people, but this wilderness area is remote enough that the experience is peaceful, quiet, uncongested. We returned home quite refreshed from this little autumn getaway.