Everything backpacking: our gear, trip write-ups, and individual pictures.

Camped at sunset.

Camped at the end of Day Two — And I’m facing east, ready for the morning sun.

Ticks and Chiggers and snakes! Oh my! This (and the heat) is why I don’t like summer backpacking. All those places for ticks, chiggers, and snakes to hide! And don’t forget the spiders too…

I had just crossed Paddy Creek Road for the second time today.

Lunch in the shade by Paddy Creek.

Paddy Creek Crossing — Looking down Paddy Creek from the crossing. +1

Gary (and company) at the Paddy Creek scenic overlook. +1

It’s a long way down — according to the map, over 200 ft.

Scenic Overlook — Paddy Creek, looking southeast.

Scenic Overlook — Paddy Creek, looking northwest.

Scenic Overlook of Paddy Creek on the Big Piney Trail, Paddy Creek Wilderness, Missouri.

Spur trail to Big Piney Trail Camp.

All motorized vehicles prohibited on this trail — Sign just after crossing Paddy Creek Road.

Gary, about to cross Paddy Creek Road — The Big Piney Trail has three road crossings. I’m about to cross Paddy Creek Road, and if things go according to plan, I’ll be crossing it again a few miles further on and after lunch.

Day Two — Camped off of the North Loop of the Big Piney Trail. +1

Visitor — It’s not the first time I’ve shared my tarp with an amphibian when it rains.

Junction with the shortcut to the South Loop. Big Piney Trail, Paddy Creek Wilderness.

No one at home — someone has removed the surprise from this trash/swill can. That’s very mean. +1

Lunch Stop — Time for lunch, a cup of tea, some noodles and summer sausage. +2

Junction of the North and South Loops, Big Piney Trail, Paddy Creek Wilderness. For a change I’m starting out on the North Loop (left).

Starting Out — Hiking the Big Piney Trail Clockwise. I’ve taken a day off so that I can spend three days on a slow hike of the 16-mile loop of the Big Piney Trail in Paddy Creek Wilderness. Unlike previous trips, it is forecast to rain on the first day, not the last. +1

Back at the Trailhead — Two nights, 18.5 miles, and 1400 ft. of elevation. It took me a smidge under two hours to hike the four-and-something miles from ‘Cab Creek’ to the Tower Trailhead. One-minute read

Camped at ‘Cab Creek’ — Finally, the sun is high enough to start warming things up. I went and sat in the sun on the other side of ‘Cab Creek’ and enjoyed the morning. +3

Day Three – tea in bed at ‘Cab Creek’. Note the sun just rising above the edge of the hollow.

Rose Verbena (Rose Vervain) — Bit of a nothing picture. At the time, though, I’d just finished hiking through a section of dense trees, and the colors in the sudden patch of sunlight really popped.

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