Hiking the Hankinson Hills Trail

Yesterday afternoon, I decided to take off down the Hankinson Hills Trail. It is an 8 miles loop that passes right by the campground I have been staying at. Passing through long grass prairie and woodlands, it’s an enjoyable hike. With some wrong turns, I even got to see some of the sand dunes, and hiked a total of 10 miles.

I set off from the campground, not really sure where to go. I took a wrong turn immediately and wandered around for a good bit near the campground, before ending up just walking up the road to a more obvious trailhead. It turns out that there is a really obvious gate from from the campground that leads to the trail, but I missed it.

IMG_4449Setting off on the trail, however, things got pretty easy. I was really impressed with the diversity of the land that the trail goes through. I tried to take a lot of pictures of all of this diversity that I enjoyed.

Throughout the hike, I found a lot of wrong paths splitting off. Most of the paths were obvious enough with some thought and map studying. One time, however, I did follow the wrong path andIMG_4463 found myself wandering about sand dunes for a good bit. It was very confusing, but I thoroughly enjoyed the interesting side of Sheyenne National Grassland.

When I did finally finish the hike and got back to camp, I cracked open a beer and settled down. I ended up finding a total of 4 ticks on me, though. It was pretty clear that they had not been attached on me long at all–probably latching on during some of the last woodland area and thicker¬†tallgrass of the hike. They were all very distinctly American Dog Ticks, too: big, red beasts with some distinct marking.

Despite the getting lost, adding 2 unnecessary miles, and the ticks I found on me at the end, it was a wonderful hike!

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