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Forest Park - St Louis, MO
mini location map2012-06-05
43 by photographer avatartibber
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Forest Park - St Louis, MO 
Forest Park - St Louis, MO
Hiking avatar Jun 05 2012
Hiking5.06 Miles 226 AEG
Hiking5.06 Miles   2 Hrs   39 Mns   2.81 mph
226 ft AEG      51 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Since the company got me in so early for the conference, I was able to fit in a couple hours of hiking before our first meeting... that is after I had a wonderful kobe beef burger and fries :D from the restauarant at the Chase Plaza. I ate the whole thing and fries; something I rarely do.

I wanted to do a circumference type of hike so I could get in some miles. I headed along Grand Drive and the first thing you see is a nice fountain. From there you head down hill and over a bridge that takes you above the Metro Line. I continued along Grand Drive but not before a stop at another big fountain spurting water high into the air from Round Lake. I followed along the water until I had to cross over to the other side. I came across another pond with some interesting greenery in it and then proceeded along the outside edge of the Park.

I passed by a statue of a man on a horse (General Sigel), passed by the Visitors Center and then hung a left past the tennis courts and across a bridge. My goal was the Jewel Box. I had a sense of where it was in my mind but getting there was a little tricky :-k as there are all sorts of trails in this park but there are also signs every now and again so you can't get too lost. I came upon the Boathouse area (there is a nice restaurant here and paddle boats). It is always planted so nicely.

My next stop was at Government Drive where there is the large step fountain (Kerth) with the World's Fair Pavilion (built in 1909 from proceeds of the 1904 World's Fair in STL) above it. Two years ago the planted flowers were much more colorful but I think because of the later time frame, they had just planted summer flowers. Nonetheless, there was plenty to take photos of :DANCE: and per two years ago, as I was walking up Government Hill there was some kind of professional photography going on at the Pavilion.

I am now heading toward the other end of the Park in pursuit of the Jewel Box. I passed by the zoo (it's an awesome zoo and FREE) and took a photo of the Animals Always Sculpture and then headed along Wells Drive. Like I said, I kind of had a sense of where the Jewel Box would be and eventually I found it. Two years ago the sky was overcast and there was a wedding party outside of the Jewel Box so my pic taking was limited. This year, there wasn't a soul in site and I had the place to myself :y: . Luckily the water lillys were blooming too so that was fun to try and get some good photos of them.

From there I headed back down toward the Pavilion, altho I wasn't quite sure where it was (there's lots of tall trees so you can't get a good visual of where things are) but per usual, I did get there and ended up walking down the other side and toward the Muny. The Muny is an outdoor theater where you can view Broadway plays. However, I am wanting to walk around the Nathan Frank Band Stand that is in the middle of another big pond. The Bandstand garden has giant white hydrangeas around it. Hydrangeas are one of my favorite flowers :) .

On the way back to the hotel, I spotted a white heron so I zoomed in to get a few photos. Needless to say, this type of hike is so different from our desert. It is so green. There were lots of different kinds of trees and birds (lots of robins and noisy red-wing black birds) and flowers than what we normally get to see. It's funny, as I was walking around the Jewel Box, I smiled; much like I do as I make my way through Boyce Thompson Arboretum.

My conference cohorts were impressed that I was able to get in a 5 mile walk before our dinner. It hardly seemed like five miles with all the distractions in the Park. Oh, and then we ended up walking about 1/2 mile to our dinner spot.

Here is a video from my hike:
Here is a short video of the birds from my 2010 hike at Forest Park:
Named place
Named place
Forest Park Jewel Box
For me, sometimes it's just as much about the journey as the destination.
Oh, and once in awhile, don't forget to look back at the trail you've traveled.
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