Ozark Trail

Back to the start and some notes – From here there is just a short thirty-minute hike, south, down the Ozark Trail to get back to the trailhead. That’s it, trip over, though there’s still the two-hour drive home to complete.

Trail junction, there goes the Ozark Trail – Here I leave the Ozark Trail. +1

Cairns, cairns, and more cairns – there were lots in this area, but I couldn’t see any side trails or other blazes.

Dry creek bed – So much of my hope for finding water on the eastern side of the loop. +1

Loadsa trailblazes – From top to bottom: Ozark Trail, Ridge Runner Trail, North Fork Loop Trail.

Ozark Trail, trailblaze.

End of trip selfie – Day Four – In total I’d hiked 27.5 miles and climbed over 2,600ft. I’m still not particularly fit, but my averages are rising.

Splashes – As anticipated, the hike out was cold and damp. So I ‘poured on the coal’ again and got moving. I wanted to get to the warmth and heated seat in the car as soon as possible.

Packing up after the rain – Everything including the hammock has been packed away leaving just the tarp which I kept up so that the occasional rain shower and drips from the trees didn’t get me and the gear wet.

Beecher Spring and site of the abandoned Edward Beecher Recreation Area – my destination for the day. One-minute read, +2

Poor flag etiquette – Not content with letting the flag touch the ground, it’s also in an appalling state. +1

Kudos to the Ozark Trail Association – The trail is very well maintained, and I like the new routing away from all the wet and marshy ground. The extra three miles are welcome too. I noticed that the complete Berryman Trail is now marked as a ‘spur trail’ of the Ozark Trail, which is good. If only all the Missouri trails were this well stewarded.

Crossing Floyd Tower Rd. (again). On the western loop this time.

“Blazes? We don’t need no stinking blazes.” I have no idea. They are everywhere.

Cedars – make for a nice soft trail

Gary (without Ginger) on the Berryman Trail – The caption refers to a picture I took in March 2011, about three-quarters of a mile from where this picture was taken. +1

What the blazes? There are hundreds of these blazes in various forms on this section of the trail. I couldn’t see any rhyme or reason for them. Unfortunately, Google was of no help either. +1

It’s a bit brushy in places. Berryman Trail – Day Three, December 2020.

Fire damage or prescribed burn? Huge swaths of the western loop go through areas cleared by fire. I have vague recollections of a large fire here, but Googling hasn’t shed any light.

Ozark Trail – Trail Blaze. I can attest to the effectiveness of the reflective strips when night hiking. Berryman Trail – Day Three, December 2020.

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