Remembering how we all enjoyed the trip we did over the summer to Starved Rock state park. I really wanted to venture on another day trip outside Chicago, this time to see the beautiful colorful autumn leaves. Unfortunately work commitments, life commitments and rainy weather all combined to delay this trip.
Finally there was a Sunday beginning of November when the weather was gloriously and unseasonably warm, plus there were no work commitments . I was determined to use this day off to soak in every last bit of warmth outside. We went to hike Indiana Dunes, a state park on the banks of Lake Michigan, an hour outside of Chicago.
The first thing I noticed on nearing the Dunes was the sparseness, the land was bare. I thought, firstly, if only the leaves had not all fallen, the colors on this landscape would have been beautiful. Secondly, despite the temperature being in the mid 60’s the naked trees were a reminder that autumn was slipping away and a long winter was ahead.
The trail we hiked comprised of half wooden walkway and half sand. The just over a mile long trail ended on the beach of Lake Michigan. As I have written in a previous post here. I find beaches in autumn and winter just as beautiful as in summer. There are no crowds to share the space with, just you alone with your thoughts on the sand looking out at the water.
We were very lucky with the weather on this trip, the bright sun reflected off the sand and gave the landscape a golden glow. It did not matter that the leaves were all gone, the landscape was still beautiful. As much as I love living in the city I also enjoy the peace, quite and solitude of the country. The change in environment and pace clears my head and makes me realize how lucky I am to call the great city of Chicago home.