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Pate Hollow Trail

Monday, January 14th, 2008

Sarah and I went hiking on the Pate Hollow Trail yesterday, a 7.7-mile hiking trail near Paynetown SRA by Lake Monroe. We did the shorter 3.8-mile eastern section. Initially, I thought it might be better not to take Rob (the dog), as I figured it’d be really muddy and didn’t feel like giving him a bath after our hike. But as we started getting ready, Rob somehow figured out what was going on (I know I didn’t tell him) and got really excited, begging to come with us. We couldn’t resist, so Rob joined us for this hike.

It was a dreary, slightly foggy day in the upper 20s, snowing a bit on and off. Really the kind of day that makes you want to sit at home and not do much of anything, but it really was beautiful once we got moving. Sarah and I have found that we much prefer winter hiking to intense summer heat. Granted, it hasn’t been extremely cold on our hikes thus far, but in colder weather, we can always add layers. In the summer, the heat can be brutal, and there’s little you can do about it. We don’t have to carry as much water during the winter, either.

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Pines along the Pate Hollow Trail

The trail starts right behind the Paynetown DNR office and is pretty close to the highway at first, but before long you are away from it and it’s surprising how quiet it is, given its proximity to the highway. The trail starts on a ridge and gradually descend into a valley. You barely even notice you’re going downhill. The trail crosses a creek a couple of times and then begins a gradual climb that doesn’t feel too difficult, but before long you realize you are way above the valley, and in fact higher than you were at the trailhead.

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Rob, running

The trail was well-marked, with maps with yellow arrows indicating your current location, at each intersection. Since we were doing only part of the trail, an old dirt road served as a shortcut.

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The old road

The trail followed the ridge tops for a while longer, climbing higher before descending into another ravine and climbing back up the other side.

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Rob peers across the ravine

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Creek

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Rob and Sarah

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Hills in the distance

This was a really cool trail, and we want to go back and hike the whole thing. The western half of it goes near Lake Monroe, so it should be even more scenic.

6 Responses to “Pate Hollow Trail”

  1. furiousball Says:

    Rob is such a cute pup, he looks like he’s filled out a bit more?

  2. Dave Says:

    You’ll really like the section that you haven’t yet hiked – it is a bit more scenic. A very similar hike is the penunsula at Allen’s Creek, though not quite the same mileage. Hurray for winter hiking!

  3. Dave Says:

    Re: Solution to flat tire and road riding: do more mountain biking. 🙂

  4. Apertome Says:

    Van: that’s what I’ve been telling Sarah, but she doesn’t seem to think so. But hopefully this hiking will help.

    Dave: good call, except the mountain biking trails must be a sloppy mess right now, with the freeze/thaw cycle …

  5. Dave Says:

    Touche’ – and posted under wrong blog anyway (meant to post under most recent). My bad…

  6. Marty Says:

    That looks like a great trail to be on with a bird guide (hint, hint). BTW, Rob looked VERY happy about the hike.

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