The plan, originally, for last weekend was a grand camping adventure at the Buffalo National River. But watching the weather on Thursday night, those plans got cast into doubt. The low temperature on Friday night around the Buffalo would be well below freezing, with rain storms turning into snow overnight. While I thought the Buffalo River would look amazing with some snow on the ground, the thought of sleeping outdoors in below-freezing weather didn't sound appealing and the camping trip was postponed to a later and hopefully warmer date.
Instead I made yet another trip out to Petit Jean Mountain State Park on Saturday, this time hiking the Cedar Creek trail. The trail loops around for 1.5 miles, running alongside Cedar Creek in a scenic area upstream of Cedar Falls. This is the third trip to Petit Jean I've taken this year, but its been ages since I've hiked this trail. I was eager to explore it yet again.
So our tour of the trails of Petit Jean Mountain continues. The Cedar Creek trail starts out running downhill alongside a small creek with several nice little waterfalls. This one was just about 10 feet from where it ran into Cedar Creek.
As I started the hike, there were ice pellets falling to the ground. This would later change to snow, and I hiked the rest of the trail as the snow continued to fall. It was nice, we don't seem to get that much snow here nowadays, and it was nice to hike through.
The trail met up with Cedar Creek, and then followed alongside it. This one little spot had a neat little waterfall, which ran in between several huge boulders.
From there the trail crossed over the creek via a small bridge that was already starting to accumulate ice and snow. The bridge overlooked a few more neat little waterfalls, which I went over to get a few pictures of.
From there the trail leaves the creek and runs up along the hillside. It eventually went back down to the creek, and this one neat spot with this little bluff hanging over the water.
There was a lot of snow coming down, and it was beginning to stick. The top of the bluff and the fallen tree are now starting to show a little covering of snow in this shot.
The trail ran above the creek, eventually dropping down alongside this neat area where the creek made a nice waterfall and then shot around a few large rocks.
And a wider view of these small falls:
The snow had begun sticking, and was maybe a quarter of an inch thick as I was finishing up the hike. The trail crossed over Cedar Creek one last time via another bridge, and this was taken from the bridge looking at another small waterfall.
And this is looking back towards the bridge, which has a small layer of snow on it. Shame about the footprints there, which were mine.
From there the trail heads uphill, heading back to the trailhead. It was still snowing, sometimes a bit heavily. It seemed to be sticking more and more, and I hoped that it wasn't affecting the roads. This last shot was taken along the trail...