Trail Review: Beaman Park

Great hike for groups with a mix of fitness levels

[First, yes, I realize I’m laughing in nearly all my pictures. Instagram model = no, happy woman = yes.]

Beaman Park is a beautiful hiking area nestled in the foothills just north of Nashville (near Whites Creek and Joelton).

Beaman Park is a great place to take a group because you can choose your own adventure for varying fitness levels or time constraints. The “entire” hike is actually made up of three trails. The first is a .6 mi out-and-back trail that connects to the second trail, a 2-mile loop. The 2-mile loop is interrupted by the third trail, a 2.1-mi one-way trail. Completing the third trail, joining back with the second loop, and going back out the first trail adds up to about 6.5 miles. The trails are marked with yellow, white, and red blazes, respectively.  Continue reading “Trail Review: Beaman Park”

Ride for Reading

Bikes and books!

Last month I learned about a great organization – Ride for Reading. Cyclists from all over Nashville met at Green Fleet Bikes and we loaded our backpacks and bikes with donated books to take to the children at the McFerrin Community Center. We biked about four miles around East Nashville and arrived at the community center to a crowd of excited kids. We looked at books, ate popsicles, and had a great time.

From the Ride for Reading website: “Our mission is to promote literacy and healthy living by donating books via bicycle to children from low-income areas. Since our start in February 2008, RfR has donated more than 400,000 books, delivering them by bicycle to kids at Title I schools.”

We got to spend time with the kids, who loved having grownups (even sweaty ones!) to talk to and look at bikes and read books. As things got kicked off, the Rfr representative had the kids say a pledge that they would read their book twice, pass it to someone else they know, and be the best student for the rest of the year.

Ride for Reading is in Nashville and San Antonio, Texas. If you find yourself in either area, join up with this great group. Even if you aren’t big on bikes, you can always drop off books at their donation sites around town – including Cumberland Transit!

The Pinhoti National Recreational Trail

A 24-hr lesson in humility

“I’ve had a wonderful time. This wasn’t it.”

One of my favorite lines for horrible dates now has a new application – my 24 hours spent on the Pinhoti National Recreational Trail.

Before I go further, please understand – it’s not the trail’s fault. Some things just aren’t meant to be. It’s not the trail; it’s me. We just didn’t meet at the right time in my life. These things happen.

Continue reading “The Pinhoti National Recreational Trail”

When Nature Sucks: Dealing with Mosquitoes and Ticks

It’s a jungle out there…

The outdoors are amazing – majestic views, beautiful flora and fauna, the chance to move your body and free your mind. The outdoors can also be a miserable experience – sudden blizzards, dried up creeks and streams, pack rash, and cranky porcupines. And then… there are the mosquitoes and ticks. You find out quickly the only thing you have control over is your attitude and your gear. Bug spray goes a long way to helping the first and is a must-have for the second.   Continue reading “When Nature Sucks: Dealing with Mosquitoes and Ticks”

New Mexico :: San Antonio Hot Springs

Beautiful, secluded, and where I proposed to Thrillbilly

The San Antonio hot springs are a beautiful series of three pools high up in the mountains north of the Jemez Pueblo and Jemez Springs. The water is warm but not scalding, and depending on the time of year, the hike to them is either 1 mile or 11 miles roundtrip. Of course, we ended up there during the 11-mile time of year.   Continue reading “New Mexico :: San Antonio Hot Springs”