I’m back from a week camping in a state forest as a ‘dispersed camper’. All that really means is that I am on state forest land where there is no campground, no running water, nothing except me and my stuff. I find the routines of that kind of living reroute my brain and relieve my anxiety and depression. I really enjoy being in the woods.
My latest spot was about five miles southwest of Red Wing, MN. My campsite was next to a spring fed creek. The one really hot day while i was there had me immersing myself in that chilly creek. I figure, the water comes out of the ground at about 45 degrees F and near where I was camped it may have warmed up a bit, but still very, very cold. I’d have stayed, but there was some sort of project involving moving of stone and backhoes, caterpillars, and a handful of workers who arrived at 8 in the morning. The project is supposed be take about two weeks, and I may return to that area, but I will set up a little further from the dirt road to avoid the dust raised by autos zipping by at 40 to 45 miles an hour.
The creek flats were lovely, and the deciduous old growth forest beyond is just beautiful. I like that setting very much indeed. The weather wasn’t the greatest, with rain three of the six days I was there. The hiking was kept to minimum by the wet conditions. There’s a layer of clay that is partially exposed in that area, so it takes a long time for it cease being mud and go back back to being simply clay.