Hot Springs Facts: Hots Springs National Park is the Nation’s oldest National Park within current NPS Parks, predating Yellowstone National Park by 40 years. On April 20, 1832 President Andrew Jackson designated “…four sections of land including said (hot) springs, reserved for the future disposal of the United States (which) shall not be entered, located, or appropriated, for any other purpose whatsoever.”
Another cold morning and I rummaged around for a pair of wool socks to go with my favorite boots. About 6 years ago I was in a Thrift store in Oregon and there was a brand new pair of hiking boots on the shelf so grabbed them. They ended up in a closet, buried, forgotten and never worn. When I cleaned out my home to move to Hot Springs, Arkansas I rediscovered them. My Garmont Storm-Bloc Boots ROCK they have saved my ankles on the hikes over solid rock and loose rock trails! I had not hiked in years when I grabbed them, the Universe must have known these days were in my future :o)
Today began with a chance meeting of a friend at the USGS Ralf Montanus. He is part of team monitoring the springs within Hot Springs National Park. Ralf is also a fountain of knowledge about places I should visit in and out of the park. This was a great start to my morning hike. Thank You as always Ralf for the great information.
I looked across at West Mountain and saw a rare sight in the park, city pigeons. Hot Springs National Park is a series of mountains and Central Avenue in the park rests between Hot Springs and West Mountains. The Pigeons seemed out of place trapped between the two Nature habitats. I wondered if they ever ventured into the park.
With an impending storm and bird of prey overhead it is difficult to find any bird out in the open. One Brave Robin could not resist the first rays of the morning sun and perched on the highest branch singing a beautiful song. In the tree below him another Robin sat quietly nestled in the the leaves cooing.
On my way up the mountain a female Cardinal popped out briefly for a photo shoot, I love Cardinals. As I turned onto the Short Cut Trail I watched as a Squirrel lept at something on the trail. It was a funny sight and I started giggling.
Up top the view from the Pagoda was as always spectacular with the sun shining brightly over the valley below. I glanced down at the Hot Springs Mountain Trail and saw Robert a fellow all weather hiker. He was headed into Hot Springs to get Jack London’s “Call Of The Wild” for a book report. I thought it was a great book choice.
I hiked the Hot Springs Mountain Trail and up the Hot Springs Mountain Road to the North Mountain Overlook. Storm clouds were massing and the sky was growing dark. As I hiked down from the overlook it occurred to me how quiet the park was today. Yesterday there had been people everywhere.
I took the Hot Springs Mountain Trail and discovered a wonderful area of moss that was like a Valentine from Nature and another like a Caterpillar. I then made my way to the top again and I decided to head down the Peak Trail. Once on the trail I looked to see if Hawks were on the dead tree perches. Nothing, so I headed home.
Have a Lovely Adventure
Much Love, Lee