Taking children for a hike on the Holy Tara trail at Mountwood Park
I love taking children into the woods for a hike. Their views of nature and the words of wisdom that come from their lips always makes me smile and think. Out of the mouths of babes.....so true.
As some know, I am contracted through the Mid-Ohio Valley Health Department to map and document trails and physical activity opportunities in 6 counties. Ritchie county is a county we are tasked with documenting and we are currently working in Mountwood Park and the Hughes Wildlife Management area. The weather has been brutal and we are out there mapping, hiking, photographing, filming and doing everything we can to give those a glimpse into the amazing public space we have in our region. I love this job, for so many reasons.
We set out to map Holy Tara trail and had the pleasure of having some special guests along, age 5 and 6. What a magical day, from log surfing to spider watching, we enjoyed.
The trail is on the hike/equestrian side of Mountwood park. We entered it from the Sand Hill WMA entrance off of Route 50. You can also access it from the campground located around the horse stalls and facilities, known as the horse camp, although others can camp there. The trails on this side of the park are dedicated to hikers/backpackers and equestrians.
The Holy Tara trail itself has some steep and difficult climbing sections on it. It is sparsely marked. We used a compass a couple of times to get our bearings (mostly because I have absolutely no sense of direction) and when the trail seemed to disappear, we were able to find it again if we just kept walking. It is close to the entrance off of Route 50 and the trail itself is .73 miles, according to the map provided by the Wood County Horse Riding club on their website. It worked well for the little legs and energy of our guests.
My grandson, age 5, half way through the hike, hugged me and thanked me for taking him on a hike. It is such a gift to introduce a child to nature. We hope our work encourages you to do the same.
Go outside and play.