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  1. #21
    Senior Member twentybelow's Avatar
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    My vote is for Butterfield, mainly because I've never been there and because [email protected] vouched for it in last year's discussion.

  2. #22
    Senior Member Dublinlin's Avatar
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    Iíd be down for either Butterfield or the Wilderness Loop at Meramec. Arkansas is always my first choice in hiking trails, but Missouri is ok. Looks like Wilderness Loop is the shortest and easiest of the two. My hunch is Butterfield would be the more scenic of the two. I think I did the Wilderness Loop solo (with my dog) maybe three years ago when my oldest daughter lived in Rolla. It was ok, but not especially scenic...course it was also horribly humid and hot since it was in the summer...so, that probably unfairly colors my memory of that trail! I might have found it much more scenic weíre I not dying of heat stroke at the time!

    As always, Iíll happily join in where-ever! And though Iím horrible at hiking long distances my preference would still be Butterfield. Come to think of it, Iím pretty sure I HAVE hiked part of Butterfield as well. I think my youngest daughter and I (and two of our dogs) hiked part of Butterfield late last Fall when Branch suggested it for that yearís hang. I think that was the place where I discovered spidersí eyes reflect in the night! I think that was the trip my kid forgot her hiking tent so we bought a bivy as we passed through Joplin and she set that up near my hammock. As I was walking back from a pre-bedtime natureís call, I saw thousands of pretty sparkly dots on the ground scattered as far as the eye could see. Closer inspection in the beam of my headlamp revealed each pair belonged to a spider! Iíve never seen such a thick concentration of spiders anywhere! I climbed into my hammock, zipped it tight(!), and didnít mention my discovery to my daughter until the next morning! I was just thinking thatís yet another reason I donít want to ever sleep on the ground!

    Update: Yup! Just now scrolled back through my Facebook posts. It WAS the Butterfield Trail my daughter and I hiked part of this past December! Home of a multitude of Wolf Spiders but a gorgeous trail! Definitely has my vote!


    Photos taken last December on the Butterfield Trail in the Ouchita Mountains:




    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Dublinlin; 11-27-2020 at 15:37.

  3. #23

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    LOL. I threw Butterfield Hiking Trail out there to see if there was any interest

    Itís further south than all other hangs so I wasnít sure how it would work for all.

    If there is real interest in the BHT, it would get my vote over the Wilderness Trail for sure. Itís a beautiful place, so much history.

  4. #24

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    I haven't been to any of these locations but my vote is for Mina Sauk Falls. I like Butterfield because it's closer but it looks like more trail that I want to tackle with my son. Wilderness Trail and Hawn State Park get thumbs up also.

  5. #25
    Senior Member Dublinlin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by doowahderek View Post
    I haven't been to any of these locations but my vote is for Mina Sauk Falls. I like Butterfield because it's closer but it looks like more trail that I want to tackle with my son. Wilderness Trail and Hawn State Park get thumbs up also.
    We normally all car camp together on Friday night and then on Saturday every one hikes in at their own pace. Year before last, the agreed upon camping place for the second night required a knee deep water crossing that I did not want to attempt with my dog and my own poor footing(!), so I opted to camp sooner than planned. As it was several other young men from our group had decided the same thing ahead of me, so I just crashed their camp. The hard-core hikers had traversed the stream and walked on a few miles further to Devil's Toll Gate(?). Some of them caught back up with us the next morning when they were hiking back out--having broken camp way earlier than we on the near side of the stream did(!)--and we hiked out together. So, don't necessarily make your decisions solely on DISTANCE involved. You don't have to do the whole loop. If we wind up doing Butterfield, I sincerely doubt that I will do the entire loop. Likely, I would car camp with everyone on Friday, then hike however near or far I am up to doing on Saturday and camp where-ever. If I make it all the way to the group camp, great(!), if I don't, then no big deal. We don't generally hike as a tight group. Everyone breaks camp as early or late as they want and head out singly or in pairs as they wish. The last day when hiking out, not everyone takes the same route out, either...some folks are seasoned hikers and like to get extra miles in and check out alternate routes. I know when we hiked Bell Mountain the second year, at least one person in our group headed up the mountain on Friday evening to check out where we would be camping the following night and then came back down the mountain to join us where we were car camping that night. Probably he just wanted to get some extra miles under his belt!

    Seriously, there is a LOT of flexibility in these hiking trips. We basically all hang out together the first night as we car camp and we eat and visit around the camp fire...but from Saturday morning on we just hike our own hike, knowing our friends are all somewhere along the same trail! We plan a second night camp site ahead of time, but not everyone makes it there--as evidenced by year before last! Also, some folks skip the Friday night gathering and just meet up at the trail head Saturday morning. Some folks year before last met on Friday night but then went home Saturday morning, choosing only to participate in the car camping portion of the trip. Then last year, I had my sister's family along and none of them had ever hammock camped before and they were using some of my equipment, too boot, so no way to familiarize themselves ahead of time since they live in St. Louis and I live in Southern MO...we just met up at the hang. They had issues that Friday night with their gear, so we opted just to stay put at the base camp next to our cars for the second night as well. We did hike up to where the rest of the folks were camping the second night (it was a really short hike) and visited with them a while before hiking back down to the same campsite from the first night to spend the second night. Everyone really is free to just do whatever works out best for themselves!

    Doowahderek, I don't mind hiking a shortened distance if you and your son don't want to go as far down the trail as the planned route winds up being. ALSO, if GEAR weight has your worried, I'd be happy to loan you and a your son two down underquilts to use Friday and Saturday. Someone else coming might be able to loan you some down top quilts...? That would lighten your pack load considerably. Also, if you don't have silnylon or silpoly tarps (if you are using the heavier Amazon.com type tarps like Kelty, ect) I could loan you two light, compact tarps. Just let me know. Also, how much does your battery powered CPAP weigh and how big is it? If you can cut weight and space in your pack going with lighter borrowed gear, that might help! I know you were probably joking about the wagon, but in case you weren't, I'm guessing that probably a wagon would be extremely difficult to drag up most any hiking trail as there is often some climbing over boulders is involved.
    Last edited by Dublinlin; 11-30-2020 at 13:46.

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dublinlin View Post
    Doowahderek, I don't mind hiking a shortened distance if you and your son don't want to go as far down the trail as the planned route winds up being. ALSO, if GEAR weight has your worried, I'd be happy to loan you and a your son two down underquilts to use Friday and Saturday. Someone else coming might be able to loan you some down top quilts...? That would lighten your pack load considerably. Also, if you don't have silnylon or silpoly tarps (if you are using the heavier Amazon.com type tarps like Kelty, ect) I could loan you two light, compact tarps. Just let me know. Also, how much does your battery powered CPAP weigh and how big is it? If you can cut weight and space in your pack going with lighter borrowed gear, that might help!
    That all sounds good to me on flexible hiking.

    My HH tarps are 27oz but I'm not too worried about them.

    Thank you for the offer on the quilts! I'm ordering a new down UQ but I'm not sure if it'll be here by the FBH. I have a couple of down bags that will work fine for top quilts. I'm going to try out my Gemini UQ this week with the HH insulation and reflectix to see how it handles the colder temps this week.

    As far as weight goes, the battery is pretty heavy but I don't "have" to have the CPAP it with me. I might use it Friday night and leave it for Saturday night.

  7. #27
    Senior Member Dublinlin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by doowahderek View Post
    That all sounds good to me on flexible hiking.

    My HH tarps are 27oz but I'm not too worried about them.

    Thank you for the offer on the quilts! I'm ordering a new down UQ but I'm not sure if it'll be here by the FBH. I have a couple of down bags that will work fine for top quilts. I'm going to try out my Gemini UQ this week with the HH insulation and reflectix to see how it handles the colder temps this week.

    As far as weight goes, the battery is pretty heavy but I don't "have" to have the CPAP it with me. I might use it Friday night and leave it for Saturday night.
    Sounds good! If you wind up needing to borrow the UQ's just give me a holler a few days in advance so I can pick them up from the relative's home where I'm currently storing my extra quilts!

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by twentybelow View Post
    A little history and links: The first two years (2017 and 2018) of the annual Missouri FBH were held at Bell Mountain. We camped at the trailhead on Hwy A near Ottery Creek the first night and at the top of Bell the second night which is about 5-6 miles from the parking lot. In 2019 we met at the Taum Sauk Campground on Friday and hiked down past Mina Sauk Falls Saturday and camped at various places beyond the falls within 5 miles of the parking lot. In 2020 we met at Hawn State Park the first night and hiked about 2 miles in to another campsite the second night. There is creek water near the parking lot as well as near the second camp.

    Iím going to try and get out this year too. I had to miss last year due to work, but look forward to getting out. Iím open to all locations, but I think my butt has reservations about Mina Sauk falls after slipping and falling twice decending..... although the rest of me really liked it. Iím in KC so everything is about 4 hours drive time for me..

  9. #29
    Member Sh4ggy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bmello View Post
    Iím going to try and get out this year too. I had to miss last year due to work, but look forward to getting out. Iím open to all locations, but I think my butt has reservations about Mina Sauk falls after slipping and falling twice decending..... although the rest of me really liked it. Iím in KC so everything is about 4 hours drive time for me..
    The drive from KC is the part I'm least looking forward to. Should be fun though

    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk

  10. #30
    Senior Member Groundskeeper's Avatar
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    I want to try to make it this year. I have been intrigued by the Buttermilk hike since [email protected] posted that little trip report, but I am more of a truck camper than hiker, so I have the same concerns as some others have stated. I will try to make it no matter what location is picked.

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