24 of 40: rocky ridge trail

 look close and you might see a white tail

 look (really) close and you might see a doe (look for her nose!)

The Overland Park Arboretum and Botanical Gardens  is a wonderful mix of formal gardens and casual woodland trails. We have enjoyed this area many times. It has turned COLD here in KC, which makes me want to get outside for a hike (I'm not sure of the logic there). Knowing the weekend would be full, and the opportunity for a family hike slim, I decided to take the kids to the arboretum Friday morning instead of book work. We arrived around 9am and although sunny and the temperature in the 40's , it was still really cold so it was best to get moving! We enjoyed a small section of the gardens, which to me are still so beautiful in hibernation even without blooms, but I was focused on getting to the woods. 

These trails are very easy to follow and well-marked, which is a good thing since I was the leader without my beloved human compass who was at the office. We only saw two other people on the trails, so we hiked mostly in solitude, which was lovely after a full week. I wasn't actively looking for wildlife, but my eye did catch something in the woods and it turned out to be a doe and her two fawns. They lingered for a while, although alert and wary of us. I did happen to capture a bit of them, although tiny specs, in a couple of pictures above. We probably observed them for a good ten minutes; quite the treat. We hiked the Rocky Ridge Trail, which is a mile, but with getting to it via other trails we probably hiked around two miles. It always feels good this time of year to get out of the house and take some fresh air on a hike! I never regret making the time to do so (even knowing a To Do list awaits at home).