Dec 28, 2020Gary at the Blair Ridge Trailhead

Color photograph of Gary Allman at the Blair Ridge Trailhead, Hercules Glades Wilderness, Missouri, USA. December 2020.
Gary at the Blair Ridge Trailhead. Copyright © 2020 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

The hike from the Falls to the Blair Ridge Trailhead is supposed to be around three-and-a-half miles. I’d say it was nearer to three. It was a cold, dull, gray day, so no pictures. Anyway, it was just standard Ozarks ridge trail scenery. That’s my last unhiked trail in Hercules Glades completed.

I saw no one on the trail, and just one pickup went past while I was at the trailhead, from which I received the statutory Ozark salute of the raised palm from the steering wheel, and to which I responded appropriately with a nod and raised hand.

Photograph of the Hercules Glades Wilderness, Blair Ridge Trailhead (Looking west). Gravel road, parking are (left) and trailhead (right).
Blair Ridge Trailhead, Hercules Glades Wilderness. It’s just a wide spot on a gravel road. Copyright © 2020 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.
Blair Ridge Trailhead, Hercules Glades Wilderness. Hercules Glades – Day Three. Copyright © 2020 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

Originally I was going to stop for lunch and a cup of tea. But while hiking the trail another idea had formed, and I decided to hi-tail it straight back without stopping. I could pile on a few extra miles by taking the Cedars (Middle) Trail up from Long Creek to the Pilot (Tower) Trail, and camp for the night overlooking ‘Twin Falls Hollow.’ I might have to set up camp in the dark, but it would push my day’s mileage up to around nine miles, plus some extra elevation, and it would leave me three miles from the trailhead for the hike out in the morning. If I stuck with my original plan and camped back near Long Creek, I might end up spending a cold afternoon sitting looking at the view.

And that’s what I did. I stopped briefly for some lunch when I got back to Long Creek and then set off towards ‘Twin Falls Hollow.’ Despite it being midweek and cold, I encountered around eight people on the short portion of the Long Creek Trail that I hiked. After that, I saw no one. There’s a good reason why I normally stay away from the trails near Long Creek and the Falls.

Copyright © 2020 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

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