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    The road to the Nature Institute offices and The Mississippi Sanctuary we're closed, so I parked at the Olin Nature Preserve parking lot and hiked in. I took the outer perimeter, plus a couple of the longer inside trails. There are a few other shorter inside trails as well. Rather hilly and rocky in places. Several stream crossings we're missing bridges, but it was rather dry so it was not much of an issue to cross and keep my feet dry. A small two tier waterfall just had a trickle going over it. The trail ends up going along the edge of Mississippi River bluffs. If you have an issue with heights be aware. Also, keep close track of any children, as it could be dangerous. I hiked in late fall, so all the leaves had fallen, but it was still a pleasant, pretty hike that I enjoyed very much.

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    20 days ago

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    2 months ago

    Nice long loop trail through forested hills and valleys and along some scenic bluffs. All saw from the time I left the trail head to the time I returned we're a couple horse back riders. It is marked as a bike trail, but it looks like it is popular with the equestrians, so watch your step.

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    2 months ago

    This morning was quite a workout. Johnson Trail is a mostly easy trail along the bottom of the bluffs. It's main drawback is how close it is to the farms, road and train tracks, interrupting the nature sounds. Newman is a rather rugged moderate trail that goes along a stream through the bottom of a canyon to it's trail head at the edge of the town of Valmeyer at the top of the bluffs. I took one leg of the Salt Lick Trail loop across the top of the bluffs. A lot of ups and downs, with views of the farmlands in the Mississippi River bottoms. My FitBit logged 78 floors.

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    2 months ago

    Part of the trail I took last year looks like it was taken out by a landslide, so some of the trail where I commented on being so narrow with a steep drop is no longer an issue. There are other sections that are similar, but not as bad as that one. They have another route that goes around it. I tried some alternative routes this time. There are still more I haven't tried.

    One of my favorite local hikes. Beautiful forested trails with several hills and gullies, a stream with a cascade of waterfalls (when it's not so dry), a Mississippi River overlook, all well maintained. I did come across one large tree blocking the trail that I assume fell recently. The stream bed next to it was dry, so it was easy to bypass it in the dry stream bed.

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    2 months ago

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    2 months ago

    A moderately rugged trail loop. Longer than the trail is marked or mapped on All trails. A loop hike through hilly forest area. A brief section near the parking with a pretty creek. Lots of deer. A very busy trail with lots of hikers, backpackers, runners, dog walkers, bikers and signs of equestrians.

    2 months ago

    A very short, easy trail to a small canyon. It looks like there might be a small intermittent waterfall at the end when it isn't so dry. The stream and falls were dry when I visited. I noticed a sign indicating a rock climbing and repelling area near the trailhead if that's what you are into.

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    2 months ago

    A mostly easy loop path, with several minor ups and downs and a few rocky areas to walk through. The main features are a couple shelter bluffs. One was fairly deep and the over was very high.