Friday, July 24, 2015

Rediscovering the Holden Arboretum

If you've been with us a while, you know that the Holden Arboretum is our very favorite place to visit. My parents get me a membership each year for my birthday and Barley and I make good use of it as we visit year-round, often several times a month. So, you may be wondering how on Earth we could possibly need to "rediscover" the arboretum.

Somehow, between traveling and exploring other parks, we hadn't made it to the arboretum in over two months! Earlier this week, I was in a funk for no apparent reason, so it was clear that the only cure would be to visit our happy place.

On Wednesday morning, I set an alarm so we could be sure to get the arboretum before it got too warm and off we went. I am pretty sure if Barley were in a car with someone who had never been to the arboretum before she could direct them there all on her own. She knows each and every turn, has one bark for correct turns, and a panicky bark for wrong turns (which makes driving really fun when there are construction detours).

The heat of the last few days seemed to have disappeared and we had the most perfect day. We got to stroll through the display garden and enjoy the flowers that are blooming right now.




We also got to spend some time strolling through the woods and taking advantage of the shade. There were plenty of logs for practicing balance and posing for pictures.



My favorite part, though, was doing the Strong Acres loop. I love the openness of the meadow and the skies were perfectly blue. We hadn't been to this part of the arboretum in ages--maybe over a year. 

To get to this trail, you have to hop across Pierson Creek, which means going down impossibly long staircases and then hopping across rocks; in the summer, that's not too bad as long as there hasn't been much rain, but with my foot issues last summer, we'd skipped out on the stairs. I'm not brave enough to try it in the winter when ice is added into the mix, so it's been a while.


Even though it was a sunny day, it was only 72 degrees, so it was perfect for walking in the wide open spaces. We stopped in the few shady places for water breaks, but we completed the full 1-mile loop without ever feeling too hot.


There were also a lot of bees and butterflies that we got the pleasure of watching towards the end of our walk.





There were also a lot of turtles enjoying the sunshine.
We spent over two hours wandering through the woods, gardens, and meadow to complete a 5.8-mile walk. We ended the week at 30.03 miles



22 comments:

  1. Lucky you - such pretty scenery and flowers. Here in CA we are in our summer 'browns' - everything is brown...

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    1. I do not envy you and the summer browns! We're taking advantage of the colors as long as possible because we know that once October/November rolls around it will be a good 6 months before we see anything but brown, white, and grey!

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  2. It looks so beautiful there and doesn't seem like you encountered a lot of others. Sounds exactly like my kind of place. ;-)

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    1. Yes! You would love it! In the display garden, there are usually more people, especially families with kids because there's a children's area, but once you get into the woods--regardless of whether you brave the rock-hopping or not--there's nobody else! We walked a good 3+ miles without encountering another person and the two people we did eventually see were just solo hikers with no dogs.

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  3. The arboretum in our area doesn't allow dogs except for one day a year and it is packed and expensive to go. Sounds like a fun place for you both to go. My sister Katie used to go wild when Mom took us to her favorite beach in Germany, but here she doesn't have a favorite place like that.

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    1. That's too bad that your arboretum only allows dogs one day a year! Dogs are welcome everywhere but the wildflower garden in ours--I don't think I'd ever go if I couldn't take Barley with me. Barley gets excited any time we approach a park she's been to before, but she's crazy when it comes to the arboretum. I'm sorry Katie hasn't found a place she loves like her beach here.

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  4. We haven't been to our arboretum in forever either. In our case, it's probably mostly because they started charging for parking lol.

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    1. Paying for parking definitely puts a damper on things. I'm so thankful my parents get our membership for my birthday every year because I would definitely not be as interested in going if I had to pay every time we went!

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  5. Oh that's so pretty and you're so lucky they allow dogs. Our botanical gardens are very pretty but they only allow dogs one day a year in December.

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    1. That's too bad! Even though I know you've got warmer weather in December than we do, I'm sure the gardens are nearly as exciting then as they are in the spring and summer.

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  6. It is so pretty there! I can see why you love it!

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    1. It is the perfect place. Each trail offers something a little bit different from all the others--and there are over 20 miles of trails, so whatever we're in the mood for, they have it!

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  7. Wow! That's beautiful. I'll bet you had a blast!

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    1. We did! Well, Barley didn't seem quite as excited about watching the butterflies as I did, but she enjoyed the rest of the adventure!

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  8. Wow, what am amazing arboretum. I've been in some lovely ones but they all refused entrance to dogs.

    You're very lucky.

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    1. We highly recommend visiting if you're ever in northeast Ohio! Barley and I are so spoiled with all of our wonderful parks here, so we're always surprised when we travel and there aren't as many dog-friendly places to visit.

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  9. What a beautiful place, I can see why it's a favorite. And so peaceful as well! That's definitely my kind of place. I'm really thinking we need to visit your area one day!
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

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    1. It is a peaceful place! We highly recommend our area as a vacation destination (just not between December and April!).

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  10. I loved that moss covered log! Gorgeous place for a summer walk!

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    1. It is a great place for a summer walk--and spring, winter, and fall, too!

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  11. Such beautiful photos, what a great adventure.

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    1. Thank you! We always get to see something new and different when we visit :)

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