We embraced REIs #optoutside campaign and spent some time hiking at Fermilab in Batavia. It was a cold 37 degrees with constant misty rain hitting our faces as the wind harshly blew. The trail was flat and consisted primarily of recent burned prairie grasses. Not very pretty. Huge lake-like puddles had formed wherever the trail took a slight dip. There was some disagreement among us about the term. Ellie thought they were ocean, or at least pond sized. Zak argued that they were absolutely no larger than puddles. We closed the debate by agreeing to call them “spots where water has gathered.” Regardless of their name, they were tough, cold, and obviously wet, but really fun to cross. Most were at least ankle deep, allowing for fun splashing.
The hike as a whole certainly was pretty miserable, but I think we all still had a decent time. And I am confident we had more fun hiking in not-ideal conditions than if we had fought crowds in big box stores. Thank you REI for constantly inspiring us in so many ways.