great day for a hike

We moved to our current home in Illinois from Michigan back in 2004, but it’s not the first time we have lived in Illinois. We first arrived in Chicago-land back in 1988. However, it wasn’t until we came back in 2004 that we discovered Matthiessen State Park.

The day started out with the typical refrain of cold, low, gray clouds, but Mr. I-Can’t-Seem-To-Get-The-Weather-Report-Right promised clearing skies and it came to pass that a beautiful, mostly sunny afternoon emerged.

One of the things I love about each of the it-feels-like-hundreds-of-times that I have visited this park is that it is always new. It’s like discovering and exploring for the first time, each time.

And I love the quiet… the sense of calm…

I am glad I made time to reflect… walk… listen to a waterfall, or the water gurgling over rocks and a stubborn oak leaf…

Thanks for stopping by.

the sun at matthiessen park

It’s not the cold or the snow that can be difficult in the winter. For me, it’s the lack of sunshine. We seem to have the following four seasons in this part of the Midwest: Cloudy, Spring, Summer and Fall. So, I was so grateful when the clouds took a break and allowed the sun to brighten a recent hike at Matthiessen Park. Hope the sun is shining where you are. Thanks for stopping by.

matthiessen moments

Spent about 3 1/2 hours hiking at beautiful Matthiessen State Park, in Utica IL. Winter here has been a bit strange: lots of unusually warm days, and not much snow. The park was especially beautiful, with a mix of winter, and a way too early for Spring vibe. The park is named for Frederick William Matthiessen. This was his estate and private park!

when winter goes

when winter goes

In celebration of the end of winter (he said with great hope!) here is another picture taken at Matthiessen State Park when I was there a few weeks ago with my son and his buddies. We had a great time exploring these falls, and, considering where the boys climbed and explored, lets just say it’s a good thing that no moms were present!

bridge and stairs

bridge and stairs

I posted a similar picture of this location here. There are two beautiful state parks about 50 minutes west of us: Starved Rock State Park and Matthiessen State Park. This was taken at Matthiessen. We are experiencing the coldest winter here in Chicago since….well… since the beginning of recorded time, but I did enjoy the cold hike on the day this was taken. I would be interested to know which one of the two you prefer. Have a wonderful weekend!