Heather Burt/For Wisconsinoutdoorfun.com
Sometimes winter weather hinders finding a good hiking trail to explore and since I no longer have a four-wheel-drive vehicle, Iíve been in pursuit of local parks that offer a natural hiking experience without having to travel too far when the roads are dangerous.
Last weekend Charlie and I discovered Paff Woods, a part of the Wausau Park System. I had heard about this park through a friend and was surprised Iíd never known about it before. Itís amazing how many unknown parks, trails and nature opportunities surround us; a lifetime of exploration to be found!
The trail within Paff Woods begins on a boardwalk over a small stream and wetland area and then turns into a loop trail on the side of a hill that offers a great workout while walking up and down hilly terrain. We enjoyed a quick view of downtown Wausau and the sound of geese honking overhead as we completed the loop. The woods were quiet with very few people on the trail, giving a sense of ďwildernessĒ while still being aware of traffic noises from nearby streets.
Even though the trail was relatively short, probably about a mile full circle, itís tempting to continue walking multiple loops as a sort of outdoor track. And since the terrain is varied and the hill provides ascents and descents, you really feel like youíve gotten a good workout, all while being outside!
Nature is the only place where you can get a satisfying workout while spending time with your dog and you donít have to deal with waiting in line for a time slot on a treadmill or wiping someone elseís sweat off your machine, plus itís free Ė no membership required! Just slip on a pair of boots, put on your hat and mittens and clip a leash to your dog.
Check out your cityís website and find the link for parks and recreation; you might be surprised by what you discover and inspired to get active with your dog Ė even in winter!
Read more posts from Heather Burt.
Heather Burt documents the ongoing journey with her dog as they play, hike and road-trip around Wisconsin in her blog www.HikingWithHeather.blogspot.com. Burt hopes to bring awareness to our state's bountiful natural beauty while encouraging people to enjoy nature.