High Line Canal Segment 10

High Line Canal Segment 10, Up and Back Plum Creek


Two things were missing on our up-and-back on the Plum Creek: plums and me. I couldn’t make it on this segment, so our High Liners went ahead with the help of my back-up leader Steve, the High Line Canal Conservancy and Walk2Connect. Eight of them saddled up, strapped on their gear and battened down their hatches in the high winds of an early fall day. Unable to park at the end of this segment where mile 9 breaks from mile 11, the High Liners parked at the top of the segment at Roxborough State Park trail head and walked east, then south, and turned back around after finding the end of High Line Canal Segment 10.

No Plums

High Line Canal Segment 10 eatwalklearnDespite the name, Plum Creek, no plums were to be had. Although we had eaten them all along the High Line Canal, expectations were spoiled on this namesake. No plums. None the less, the High Liners paced along, holding on to their hats in gusty winds, feeling the affects of the incoming Fall.

Trains and Prairie Views

High Line Canal Segment 10 eatwalklearnWhereas segment 9 offered up several trains at which to wave, only one scooted by on this route that paralleled our previous tracks. None the less, wide views across the prairie to the south entertained the high liners until they reached the end of the segment, which was also the end of the trail. At mile marker 9, they turned around to head back up to the start.

And, We’re Back!

High Line Canal Segment 10 eatwalklearnAfter a quick four miles and various texts to the missing leader, the High Liners moseyed back to their cars. No carpooling was necessary. But all were excited to think that the next segment will be the last of 71 miles. The High Liners will walk all the way to High Line Canal Mile Marker 0 in Waterton Canyon. As High Line Canal Segment 10 came to its end, they all promised a grand finale on Segment 11. Who will join us? Sign up here.

High Line Canal Segment 10 eatwalklearn

Following the #summerofwalking

The SummerOfWalking Tops for Take-aways

summerofwalking eatwalklearnThe beginning of summer brings high expectations for thrills and adventures.  By the time fall rolls around, I’m generally disappointed I didn’t achieve all I dreamt about back in June. So this summer, I decided to take on summer’s expectations so that when the fall came around, I’d have fond memories of an unforgettable summer. I even developed a special tag in my social media so that I would be able to search my digital memories better. I created #SummerOfWalking.

summerofwalking eatwalklearn
Now that fall is upon us, it’s time to search #SummerOfWalking and see if my summer expectations played out. Oh my gosh, what a fantastic summer I had. Although technically, summer started on June 20, I started early by leading my first segment of the High Line Canal. This 71 mile adventure began on June 4 when 26 people followed me through Green Valley Ranch in search of the High Line Canal. I knew none of these folks, and by the time we reached segment 9 at mile marker 10 on September 18, ten of them had become my tribe.

So, first take-away from #SummerOfWalking. Made over 40 new friends, built a tribe of 10.

Walking Denver Brings Surprises

summerofwalking eatwalklearnIn between leading the segments along the High Line Canal, I took off on my own urban hiking adventure in Denver, which I called the 9 Creeks Loop. Over 8 days, I walked, documented, and discovered 41 miles of Denver via its regional trail system. From a lady in Aurora who thought I was crazy to be walking alone, to a family that loved the free Wallaroo hats I gave them, I shot footage of the entire loop (thanks Forest City for the GoPro!) What did I discover?

Take-away two from #SummerOfWalking. Denver contains fabulous people who are kind and caring.

The Summer of Love

summerofwalking eatwalklearnDue to the #SummerOfWalking goal, my husband got to benefit too. Although he had been to Niagara and Toronto, I hadn’t. Thus, we loaded up our back packs, got off the plane in Buffalo, and scooted our way across the border. With the help of busses for the longer sections, we walked our adventurous selves to Toronto via the Bruce Trail. Having no agenda, no cell phones, and no time schedule, we got the chance to just hang with each other and enjoy our own company.

Take-away three from #SummerOfWalking. I married a great guy.

Steps Don’t Really Count, But They Are Fun

summerofwalking eatwalklearnI am not much of a fan of counting steps; walking is about connecting and discovery. It’s the platform for life. But I do use an app called Walksome that runs in the background and only counts true walks, not ambient walking (like around the house and other steps.) Occasionally I would check into the app and discover big, giant numbers that I never thought I’d walk on a consistent basis. I’d have days and days in a row of 22,000+ steps.

Take-away four from #SummerOfWalking. When you’re connecting as you walk, the step counts add up to giant numbers.

Walking is the Platform for Life

summerofwalking eatwalklearnMy feet took me through wonderful art work scenes, along paths and trails in Denver that I never would have discovered, across the Canadian border 4 times, and into areas of my own neighborhood I’ve previously ignored. By bringing forward the simple act of walking into my summer expectations, I won.

Take-away five from #SummerOfWalking. Winning comes from small steps that add up to big steps, and in between each step is a friend, a story, and an experience. It’s not the amount of steps on the shoes, it’s the experiences had while in them.

Now that fall is upon us, I’m wondering what follows the #summerofwalking. What types of expectations do you have for fall?

High Line Canal Segment 9

High Line Canal Segment 9 Highlands Ranch

high line canal segment 9 eatwalklearnWe had a short way to go and short time to get there. Fortunately, the 88 degree sun began to set as the eight of us headed west into its sunset through Highlands Ranch along the High Line Canal Segment 9. Feeling the support of the High Line Canal Conservancy and Walk2Connect, we High Liners knew that we had 2 hours of walking but only 1 1/2 hours of daylight, so off we went.

Fly N By Ranch

high line canal segment 9 eatwalklearn
We picked up the trail just west of mile marker 15, walked west just a bit, and made a quick rest stop at Fly N By Ranch. A few folks were fishing. We nibbled off an apple tree and reviewed the 110 years of history on this wonderful treasure now managed by South Metro. Here, the Trail turned southerly and we picked up some well-needed shade.

Is Everyone Walking?

high line canal segment 9 eatwalklearnOriginally the Fly N by expanded beyond c470, but now a large senior citizen complex owns its southern section. We marveled at how big and how many buildings made up the complex including a giant skyway that crossed over the Canal and the Trail. A gorgeous tunnel goes under an intersection within the complex. We hope the residents of this facility are out using the Trail. Sadly, we only saw one other person on the Trail here this evening.

A Break Up or a Romance?

high line canal segment 9 eatwalklearnWe continued along the Trail and meandered through the Highlands Ranch Golf Course. Two fathers were out with their teenage daughters playing golf enjoying some family time. We started to catch some scrumptious front range views as the foothills came closer. At one point, we decided to take a break at a bench. At the bench, we weren’t sure if we had found a very romantic moment or a broken-hearted moment. Surrounding the bench were hundreds of dried rose petals of various colors. We settled on the romantic side and made up stories of proposals and commitments.

Industrial Design

high line canal segment 9 eatwalklearnAfter being in some of the prettiest parts of the Trail for a good 20 miles, starting in Cherry Hills, we emerged out of the visual love of vast landscapes, barns, and places. Crossing Santa Fe, which was sheer terror where no crossing exists, the industrial impact of Denver abutted the Trail. With train tracks on our left and right and concrete and gravel plants sandwiched in between, we still found interest in the area. The sun began to set, casting our beloved pinks all over Denver. We could even see the Denver skyline to the north.

high line canal segment 9 eatwalklearn

Trains, Bridges, and the Dark of Night

high line canal segment 9 eatwalklearnTrains began to pass on to our right, carrying coal. With darkness just about to descend, we continued our journey, picking up our pace just a bit. By mile marker 11, it was dark. We had another mile to go, and a few of us pulled out head lamps. Finally, we arrived at mile marker 10. Just south of the mile marker is a foot bridge sorely in need of some loving care. Lit by our cell phones and flashlights, we crossed the bridge single file on its north side–where the best footings could be found–then crossed the train tracks, then arrived at our cars.

high line canal segment 9 eatwalklearnIn the dark, we raised the number nine on our fingers and took our parting shot. Now in the single digits of mile markers, we are getting very excited for the end of this 71 mile journey. With High Line Canal Segment 9 in the books, next up we’ll be walking along Plum Creek. It should be a pretty walk; join us next Friday. Sign up here.

High Line Canal Segment 8

High Line Canal Segment 8, An Amble through Littleton

High Line Canal Segment 8 eatwalklearnIf you haven’t joined us yet, what are you waiting for? We are having an absolute blast connecting with the High Line Canal and walking the 71 miles from the Denver International Airport to Waterton Canyon along the High Line Canal Trail. With the support of Walk2Connect and the High Line Canal Conservancy, 8 of us headed out this morning under 42 degree skies and foggy breath. In no time, the sun warmed the air, we shed our light coats, and our pace ambled through Littleton. With 10 miles to go, our feet pointed south, then west, then north, then south. Ah, the joys of the High Line!

Banquet of Flavors

High Line Canal Segment 8 eatwalklearnThe theme of this particular segment from Julia DeKoevend Park to Highlands Ranch was “banquet!” We had a virtual smorgasbord of the earth’s bounty. First up, apples. Green. Red. Ripe for the picking and delicious, we feasted several times on these special pieces of trail magic. Not be to outdone, peaches popped up. Then Russian olives, plums, and crab apples grabbed the, sadly, not-yet-ripe-enough, spotlight. We even stumbled upon a couple of trees of spiky apple-like pears. Anyone have guesses?

Barns with Views

High Line Canal Segment 8 eatwalklearnIf this walking smorgasbord hadn’t been the theme, then I think “barns” would have been the first runner up. Red, white, small, quaint, giant, and everything in between. Some had horses, a few had chickens, all had a story to tell whether they were brand new or historic. But regardless of size, the barns back-dropped to the exquisite views of the Rocky Mountains. Dotted between our views, we caught glimpses of Red Rocks Amphitheater and even Waterton Canyon, our final destination.

Head Gates Dominate!

High Line Canal Segment 8 eatwalklearn
Okay, if the theme hadn’t been banquet or barns, it would have to be “head gates.” All of these barns need water, and the water for these barns with farms must come from the High Line Canal. As we make our way closer to the start of the Canal, where the water can actually reach these water rights owners, we began to see actual evidence that water actually flowed through the Canal for real usage!  Head gates everywhere! Although they generally all look alike with their black bodies and orange wheels, each one is just a bit different than the last, giving each head gate its own personality. All of them are numbered as well, sequentially. Today we made it to head gate 15.

Attack of the Teens

High Line Canal Segment 8 eatwalklearnAt each mile marker, we try to take a picture. Sometimes the model for the marker gets a bit crazy with the significance of the number, other times, the pictures are fairly routine. But as we crossed over mile marker 20, we realized we were finally in our teens. While walking, we began to think about how a teen would take a picture of a mile marker, and we decided it would be a selfie. So at mile marker 19, we couldn’t resist selfies. And we had some fun. I love how all the models are taking pictures of themselves, and the mile marker is not even in their pictures. How teen!

Tired, but Always Happy

High Line Canal Segment 8 eatwalklearnBy the time we made it to mile marker 16, our feet hurt, and energy lacked. We thought we were parked at mile marker 15, but actually, it was a bit further. So the last mile was certainly the longest, but as the views from McLellan Reservoir treated us and let us escape our thoughts, suddenly mile marker 15 appeared and then our cars. With another 10 miles under our belts from High Line Canal Segment 8 and only 15 more to go, we hugged until our next segment, which is in a week. Will you join us for High Line Canal Segment 9? Sign up here.

First Creek DEN Open Space

first creek eatwalklearnWhen you’re the first group to do the first hike on the First Creek Trail at DEN Open Space, you’ll also be the first to discover its many surprises.

And many showed themselves.

first creek eatwalklearnSix of us signed up on MeetUp for a Walk2Connect Walk&Talk at 9 am to do an inaugural walk on the new First Creek Trail DEN Open Space. Recently opened, this 192-acre trail which is owned by the Denver International Airport (thus, the reason for DEN in its title) and manage by the Denver Park and Rec, greeted us to a wonderful 4-mile total down-and-back walk. We met in the trail head at the northwest corner of Peña Blvd and 56th Ave in Denver.

First Creek eatwalklearnAfter a bit of prairie dog interpretation highlighting the large prairie dog colony at the trail head, we headed north on the old abandoned Buckley Road. A short distance later, we took a hard right to jump onto the trail. With a 8-ft wide concrete path ribboning the First Creek, we ambled along under Peña Blvd. Our first surprise literally jumped out at us–a fledgling barn owl. Photos and a quick call to Colorado’s wildlife line to confirm we should leave it alone, we continued along.

First Creek eatwalklearnNext up, who knew a horse barn and corrals would dot our view to the south while the Creek flowed on our north? The trail opened up to a wide prairie view and the Creek flowed wider while we crossed over it. Shortly, we passed under 56th Ave, marveled at the mud swallow nests, and then continued.

First Creek eatwalklearnJust as we were hitting our stride, we walked through the double-arched bridge of Airport Road, and surprise, the end of the Trail! Sadly the Trail abruptly ends, but to our joy, there’s a nice water feature of flat rocks which invites walkers to have a seat and enjoy the respite. Mallard ducks greeted us as we took a small break before heading back to the trail head.

First Creek eatwalklearnOn our way back to the trail head, the A train passed over us and the barn owl still held its perch. Kingfishers, Killdeer, and Golden Finches flew by. Although a short 2 mile to the end and 2 miles back to the trail head for a total of 4 miles, the First Creek Trail at DEN Open Space offered up a quality walk. We can’t wait to see it extend to the High Line Canal! Join us on our next walk on the First Creek at DEN Open Space on November 2, 2016. Sign up here.

First Creek eatwalklearn

High Line Canal Segment 7

High Line Canal Segment 7 Greenwood Village to Centennial

high line canal segment 7 eatwalklearnIt’s funny to think that walking 5 miles is chump change. But that’s how we felt this morning after coming off our last segment of 10 miles. None the less, 20 High Liners headed out, with the support of the High Line Canal Conservancy and Walk2Connect, under gorgeous 70 degrees and partly cloudy skies. On this beautiful Sunday morning, we wanted to clock 5 miles between mile markers 29-25 through Greenwood Village and a bit of Centennial. Only smiles graced our faces as we started out on High Line Canal segment 7.

Mile 29, Hello Greenwood Village

high line canal segment 7 eatwalklearnLucky for us, we had several new folks walking with us. So after a brief run through of how we’d carpool and a few rules of the road, we started our jaunt through Greenwood Village. One of our walkers is very familiar with this area, and she told us to keep our eyes peeled for a treat right after mile marker 29. In no time, we discovered our treasure! Ceramic birds mounted onto a Cottonwood snag. Deliciously decorated and hung with care, not only did we marvel at the artwork, but we all remarked how everyone passing us quickly on bikes, jogging, or walking dogs was missing this wonderful treat that only an amble would uncover.

To see footage of mile 29, watch this video.

Miles 28-26 Greenwood Village

high line canal segment 7 eatwalklearnQuiet and idyllic, the High Line Canal and its Trail subtly wind through scenic views and grand vistas. What’s interesting is that the Village has a storm water run-off challenge, and the Village together with Denver Water have a plan. They have developed a pilot study to see if the High Line would be a good collector of storm water and cleaner of the water that enters it. Fortunately, halfway into the 2016 study, the report is looking good. If all goes well, Denver Water will attempt other storm water projects elsewhere along the Canal. None the less, for the first time in quite a while, we saw water in the Canal!

To see footage of mile 28, watch this video.
To see footage of mile 27, watch this video.
To see footage of mile 27.5 watch this video.
To see footage of mile 26 through Village of Greenwood, watch this video.

high line canal segment 7 eatwalklearnAs we ambled along, the large custom homes provided charming visual treats. Hearts on barns, tiny re-created pump houses, and general overall beauty at luxurious scale treated us on every corner. The dirt and pebble trail hosted many walkers, riders, and even an interesting fellow training for an Antarctic Expedition. He was plunging ahead of us in full hiking gear, heavy pack, trekking poles, and he even dragged a 25-pound tire behind him.

Mile 26-25 Hello Centennial

high line canal segment 7 eatwalklearnAfter crossing several solar-powered crossings in the Village of Greenwood, the Trail continued as it has been, offering up serene views. We had to convince the new walkers that we don’t do boring on our walks. And in timely fashion, the famous “wagon wheel” bench was upon us. We couldn’t resist the challenge of how many folks we could squeeze into a wagon-wheel bench (12) which gave us clear views to the Rockies. A passerby facilitated our picture.

To see footage of mile 26, watch this video.
To see footage of mile 25, watch this video.

high line canal segment 7 eatwalklearnShortly after our wagon-wheel escapade, all of us stopped dead in our tracks. It’s easy to forget and take advantage of the wealth of beauty around us. We ooh and ahh all the time, laughing at yard ornaments, amazing gardens, charming barns, and of course, the occasional glimpse of the Rockies. But sometimes it’s easy to forget where the beauty came from, and thanks to a grateful homeowner, we got reminded.

Mile 25 Breakfast time!

high line canal segment 7 eatwalklearnAnd then boom, the walk was over. Granted, five miles is good distance. But when walking with friends, learning new things, and enjoying the company of good conversation, the miles pass quickly. Since it was still early and a Sunday, we figured why not have some brunch together. So off we went to the Pancake House for a hearty meal to follow up our morning activities.

high line canal segment 7 eatwalklearnPlease join us next time for segment 8, a 10-mile jaunt through Centennial and Littleton. Sign up at www.walk2connect.com/connectingthecanal. Free for everyone, don’t miss it. Thanks for reading along High Line Canal Segment 7.

High Line Canal Segment 6

High Line Canal Segment 6 Beautiful Cherry Hills

high line canal segment 6 eatwalkearnPeople who enjoy Denver think they need to get up into the mountains to see amazing views. They couldn’t be more wrong. This High Line Canal Segment 6 walk meandered through some of the prettiest places and views I’ve ever seen. Backed by the High Line Canal Conservancy and Walk2Connect, a group of 16 set out on an amazing amble through Cherry Hills last night under perfect weather, great attitudes, and wonderful new friendships. Here are the highlights from High Line Canal Segment 6.

Entering Cherry Hills Village–No Parking, But Glorious Views

high line canal segment 6 eatwalkearnWe started at Mamie Eisenhower Park and continued south from mile marker 38. We were all very excited knowing that we’d soon cross our halfway mark in this 71-mile adventure. But first we had to cross Hampden, which actually had good beg buttons and pedestrian markings, follow the complicated High Line Canal signs, discover the Cherry Hills Village neighborhood, and cross a foot bridge to reconnect with the pebble trail south of Wellshire Golf Course.

To see footage of crossing Hampden, watch this video.
To see how to navigate from Hampden/Colorado through Cherry Hills Village, watch this video.

Mile Marker 35.5, The High Liners Cross the Halfway Line!

high line canal segment 6 eatwalkearnNot long after we hit our stride, we hit our mark. At 35.5 miles, the High Liners paused to reflect on the all the fun and adventure we had experienced as we crossed into the second half of our journey. Strangers had become friends, friends had become motivators. Three disc golf courses, 1 deer, hundreds of birds, thousands of flowers, over 100,000 steps–5 of us who have walked all 6 segments named ourselves the Olympians of the High Line.

To see the Halfway celebration, watch this video.

Cat’s Conservation

high line canal segment 6 eatwalkearnAround Mile Marker 35, we walked along the Cat Anderson property. Here, Ms Anderson has conserved 17 acres of horse country. With sweeping views of horse jumps, grasses, and even delicious apple trees (yup, we tried some of the best, sweet, green apples we’ve ever eaten), we took a respite. Nice benches greeted us, and a wonderful, wheelchair-accessible porta-potty came handy at just the right time. Watch this wonderful videolog of Ms Anderson describing her property and its conservation. (Thank you Debby Miller for the pointer!)

A Wonderful Place to Retire

high line canal segment 6 eatwalkearnMile Marker 33 popped up in surprise, as the miles seemed short when surrounded by good friends and good sites. We found ourselves bordering the Kent-Denver Day School property, one of the largest users of the High Line’s water. The High Liners were quite surprised to learn that Mamie Dodd Eisenhower originally owned this land, and she and Dwight had plans, at one time, to retire here.

Ode to the Cottonwood

high line canal segment 6 eatwalkearnWith such a bounty of beauty, we had gotten accustomed to the large cottonwoods watered by the Canal. These shady giants had become routine until we came across the largest tree I’ve ever seen in Denver. Six of us gathered our arms and hugged out a big sign of appreciation. One of our new walkers held up a 6 sign to mark the occasion, reminding us that around each corner on the High Line there’s always a surprise.

Preserving the Best Front Range Views

high line canal segment 6 eatwalkearnWe didn’t think it could get prettier, but then we crossed into Greenwood Village, and we stumbled upon the amazing Marjorie Perry Nature Preserve. With wetland views backdropped by the sun-setting Rocky Mountains, our cameras clicked in amazement. Here, just a few miles from downtown Denver, we enjoyed National Geographic worthy views of the best of Denver’s front range.

The Famous Asparagus

high line canal segment 6 eatwalkearnSince Mile Marker 71, we had heard about the famous wild asparagus growing along the Canal. Even the Conservancy’s Harriet LaMar had egged us on. After 35 miles, our skepticism had set in. But then, on a chance, we had set down for a break to enjoy the sun set along the Preserve. And lo and behold, what was right in front of us, but some actual wild asparagus! We dug in–only to find that it had gone to seed and was a bit too bitter. But next Spring, we now know where to gather (hint, near Mile Marker 32.)

Always Connecting

high line canal segment 6 eatwalkearnTo our delight, a new walker joined us at around Mile Marker 31. A local, he rolled along and gave us some insight into the frequent walkers of the Trail. Our new friend wants to walk the Camino de Santiago and was thrilled to find a group of walkers who had either walked it themselves or had friends who were planning to walk it. We connected, shared contact info, and he promised to join us with his wife on our next segment. He also refreshed us by letting us know that once we passed the house under construction on the right, our parking lot at Orchard Road would be not much further on the left. Thus, with another 8 miles under our belt, High Line Canal Segment 6 came to a glorious end.

high line canal segment 6 eatwalkearn

High Line Canal Segment 5

High Line Canal Segment 5 Denver’s Urban Core and Cherry Creek Respite

High LIne Canal Segment 5 eatwalklearn11 miles–that was our goal for this segment through Denver’s urban core and through Cherry Creek–and we tackled it with finesse and grace. All 13 walkers on High Line Canal Segment 5 eagerly took the 11 mile challenge, and the Canal gave us much joy under cloudy skies and 75 degree temperatures. It was a perfect day for a long walk on the High Line Canal.

Rather than give a mile-by-mile, blow-by-blow as I have in the past, I’ll highlight a few features we uncovered on this fabulous segment walked in partnership with Walk2Connect and the High Line Canal Conservancy. We started off at mile marker 48 between Windsor Gardens and Fairmount Cemetery.

Fairmount Cemetery–A Denver Historic Landmark

High LIne Canal Segment 5 eatwalklearnWithin the first mile, we came across the wonderfully historic pump house. Here, the pumps move water from the Canal into Windsor Lake where the water reserves until the Cemetery needs it. Fairmount Cemetery is the 2nd largest and oldest user of the High Line Canal. Denver Water is working with the Cemetery to come up with alternatives to ditch irrigation, but in the meantime, not only does the Cemetery continue as a historic landmark, but it also stewards several champions trees, rare roses and other flora and fauna. Tours are available for this historic landmark.

The Parker/Mississippi Crossing

High Line Canal Segment 5 eatwalklearnAtrocious, dangerous, and downright obnoxious, the crossing at Parker and Mississippi near mile marker 48 begs accidents to happen, but thankfully, the High Line Canal Conservancy is on the case. With over 22,400 cars a day, at least, and a beg button that is halfway across the street, help is on the way! Studies have been completed, construction of a box culvert below the intersection will begin in 2018, and by 2019, High Liners will have a safe way to cross Parker and Mississippi. Let’s give a huge shout out to the High Line Canal Conservancy for brokering and advocating for this great improvement!

Walking in the Canal

High Line Canal Segment 5 eatwalklearnOh what a treat! Between mile markers 46 and 47, we actually walked down in the Canal! A gorgeous dirt trail leads the way through mature fruit trees and bushes while offering a cooler walk by about 2-3 degrees! We had to exit the interior of the Canal to enjoy the wonderful and new tunnel under Iliff, but what a nice change of pace to actually be down in the Canal walking!

Cherry Creek Culvert

High Line Canal Segment 5 eatwalklearnWater rights: long ago fought over and still continuing in the west. Water rights play out at the intersection of Cherry Creek and the High Line Canal. Here, a culvert transports water from the Canal under Cherry Creek so that the water systems don’t intermingle. Now I don’t know for sure why this is the case, but I imagine ecosystem issues weren’t in the front of conversation in the late 1880s, but water rights were. None the less, we spied where the Canal ditches under Cherry and then picks up just south. We snaked around the Cherry Creek and followed the signs to continue along the High Line Canal.

Wonderful Bible Park

High Line Canal Segment 5 eatwalklearnBetween miles 42-41, we enjoyed a nice amble through Bible Park. The Trail follows the Canal on the dirt trail which runs between the Canal and the paved trail within the park. Tennis courts, outdoor fitness gyms, baseball fields, natural areas and green fields decorated our view as we horseshoed around the park. It was nice on our legs to enjoy the dirt path and get off of the concrete and asphalt Trail. In addition, we took advantage of the restrooms at the baseball fields to fill water bottles and use facilities.

To see footage of Bible Park, watch this video.

Crossing under Interstate 25

High Line Canal Segment 5 eatwalklearnIt’s easy to lose yourself while walking on the Canal, and street crossings often feel a bit out of place. Even when exiting the Trail, it’s easy to wonder where you are. So when we suddenly came upon interstate 25, we all felt a bit shocked. Where did this giant under-crossing come from? None the less, we ambled under the 8 lanes of drivers going 60 miles per hour–a much different pace than our 3 miles per hour.

A Party at the End

High Line Canal Segment 5 eatwalklearnIn no time, we reached out last mile marker for the day as we entered Mamie Eisenhower Park. To our surprise, a live band played us into the Park and the High Line Canal Conservancy, there participating in a neighborhood event, welcomed the 13 of us 11-milers. Pictures, hot dogs, and cold water greeted us as we completed our longest walk on the High Line Canal Segment 5.

Changes to the High Line Canal Walking Schedule

If you aren’t up on the changes to the segment schedule, be sure to check the updates. Our next segment will be on Friday, August 12. If you joined us on High Line Canal Segment 5, you’ll certainly want to join us for the 8-mile Segment 6 through Cherry Hills. See you then!




Mineral Salts Deodorant Product Review

Mineral Salts Deodorant Stops Stink

yummy reviews eatwalklearn

Whether true or not, the information out there about aluminum-based deodorant’s affect on brains and memory is scary. Then, when stopping and thinking about putting a layer of aluminum-based chemicals and fragrances in our armpits, which are next to our lymph nodes and breasts, via a daily dosage of antiperspirant or deodorant, just seems a little bit crazy. Truly though, no one wants to stink. It’s a fate worse than spinach stuck in your teeth. So when Sprouts Farmers Market gave me a free sample of a “natural deodorant,” skepticism arose. Here’s my review of Mineral Salts Deodorant.

Eliminates Body and Foot Odor?

Sprouts gave me a complimentary set of both the Mineral Salts Deodorant spray and the stone. When I first looked at them and read the label that they “eliminate body odor and foot odor,” I really doubted it. You see, I sweat. A lot. I walk everywhere, and I work up quite a wet armpit which even on its rosiest day, smells. Like most folks out there, I am not willing to let even the possibility of the slightest whiff of unpleasantness settle in. Scars from 5th grade bullies rhyming my name “Chris” with, ah, well, unpleasant smells still run deep.

A Spray and a Stone

I set both products on the bathroom vanity, and to my surprise, my husband snatched the stone. He has done research on aluminum’s affect on Alzheimer’s, and unbeknownst to me, he’d been looking for an alternative solution to his Right Guard. He tried the stone first, and I followed his lead with the spray.

yummy reviews eatwalklearnThe Sniff Test

After our first day, we did sniff tests on each other. Nothing. Nada. Not a stench to be had. I couldn’t believe it, nor could he. Granted the day had been cool, so not much sweating had occurred. The next day in blazing Denver heat, we gave the Mineral Salts Deodorant another try. Granted, this product is a deodorant (built to manage smell), not an antiperspirant (built to manage sweat). Even though our pits were wet from the heat, we didn’t stink. Nor did we stink after the sweat had dried into our t-shirts. Not even a glimmer of ill-smelling funk.

Buy Yourself Some Mineral Salts

Thus, I’m sold. You’ll find me spritzing two sprays each morning. I will admit, though, on hot days where I know I’ll drip, I still wear my favorite Suave. But now, though, it’s not every day that I throw an aluminum-based stench killer into my armpits. Whether or not my new habits will prevent me from getting Alzheimer’s, I have no idea. But I do have to say that it just seems to make a lot of sense to use a natural product when available. Thus, I give the Sprouts Mineral Salts Deodorant an A-. It’d get an A if it would also manage the wetness. Perhaps another day…

High Line Canal Segment 4

High Line Canal Segment 4

high line canal eatwalklearnAll around us, thunderstorms threatened our attempt at High Line Canal Segment 4. But guess what, we had gorgeous walking weather. In partnership with the High Line Canal Conservancy and Walk2Connect, I am leading a 71-mile walk along the High Line Canal, one segment at a time. This Segment 4 left from the Central Library in Aurora on Alameda and ended between Windsor Gardens and Fairmount Cemetery. With cool breezes and a few rain drops, our evening walked ventured on.

Mile 54 Leaving the Aurora Government Center

high line canal eatwalklearn

If you read my last post, you know that our mileage got a little wonky. When we picked up our walk again, we discovered a marker missing its number, which we determined to be mile marker 54. It’s behind the Aurora Government Center just to the east of Sable. Thus, we jumped back on the High Line and continued west. After crossing the very busy and poorly marked Sable crossing, where one of our brand new Walking Movement Leaders got to practice getting a group across a street, we set out for what we hoped would be dry skies.

To see footage of this mile, watch this video.

Mile 53 Just another Day on the Trail

high line canal eatwalklearn

Since we hadn’t walked for awhile together, there was a lot of catching up to do. Of the original 26 folks who signed up on our first day, only 4 remain who have done all the segments. But each time we walk, new people join us, bringing their own experiences of joy on the Canal. As we walked along the Aurora Hills Golf Course, our group of strangers became a team, checking in on each other and getting to know one another.

To see footage of this mile, watch this video.

Mile 52 Approaching Denver

high line canal eatwalklearn

It had been a while since we had actually seen a mile marker with a number on it. When we finally came upon mile 52, it was reassuring to know that we were making progress in the right direction. We had crossed into Denver and the tone of the Trail changed. Whereas some of the houses along its border seemed proud to be associated with the Trail and its access, other homes completely fenced off their yards trying to ignore the Canal. By the way, I love the photo above. It has two High Liners who have done all 4 segments and two brand new walkers!

To see footage of this mile, watch this video.

Mile Marker 51 We Complete 20 Miles

high line canal eatwalklearn

Thinking back to how far we’ve walked and what we’ve seen so far, 20 miles impresses all of us. From a subdivision where we couldn’t even see a trail, across major roads, through three Frisbee golf courses, a gorgeous urban farm, and now our second county, the High Line Canal is allowing almost 40 people to connect to Denver in ways we’ve never connected before. We have such a treasure in the Canal and a capacity to change people’s lives through its use.

To see footage of this mile, watch this video.

Mile 50 Which Way at Expo Park?

high line canal eatwalklearn

At Expo Park, the Canal splits the Westerly Creek to the east and the High Line Canal Trail to the West. Although a nice new sign points to the Trail, we realized that the sign culled you to walk through Expo Park along Westerly Creek. The older traditional High Line sign to the west pointed us in the right direction down a pebble trail. Dodging a few rain drops with the goal to pick the pace up just a bit, darkness started to fall.

To see footage of this mile, watch this video.

Mile 49 Windsor Gardens

high line canal eatwalklearnAt Mile 49, one of our Walking Movement Leaders had stashed a cooler of cold water, which was an absolute treat. Unfortunately, one of our walkers had a bit of a heat exhaustion issue. While taking care of her, the remainder of the walkers went ahead and finished our last mile before darkness finally set in. Slowing down a bit to do a little first aid, a small group of us banded together to help everyone finish this leg.

To see footage of this mile, watch this video.

Despite a very late night, all the walkers completed the segment with smiles on faces and joy in hearts to tackle the next segment. Thus we all completed High Line Canal Segment 4, will you join us for Segment 5?