John’s Recon

May 7, 2009

Vacationing With Ticks

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Prichard @ 7:41 am

The best way to forget about the Swine Flu is to replace it with something else … Lyme Disease. Yes, we have chosen to go to Arkansas for almost a week starting tomorrow afternoon. Although we have done mostly the twisty roads through the forest in the past, this time we will have two mountain bikes strapped to the back of the roadster. This way we can get right in and feel the vegetation.

So we will spend some of the time hiking in Petit Jean State Park and riding trails in Mount Nebo and Devil’s Den State Parks. Plus there is a choice on Saturday before we get to Petit Jean. We could go either to Lake Ouachita Vista Trail or Fern Hollow Trail that circles White Oak Lake State Park. Although Fern Hollow Trail is probably a safer way to go for our first Arkansas mountain bike trail, I kind of favor the spectacular pictures I might get since Lake Ouachita State Park has one of the prettiest lakes you will ever visit. We even spent a summer vacation on the lake in a houseboat with a hot tub and slide, when our kids were teenagers (haven’t posted those pictures yet – film camera). Plus Lake Ouachita is closer to Petit Jean so we will have to be careful if we go here … we wouldn’t want to take a bad fall or ride off a cliff on our second day now would we.

All told, we are maximizing our exposure to the Ouachita and Ozark tick habitats. Now ticks aren’t as bad as the blood-sucking gruesome leaches of Vietnam, but they tend to prefer the more private areas where detection is made harder due to additional body camouflage … leaches don’t give a damn where they suck blood. In either case, I’d rather have neither. Such is life … there seems to be a direct correlation between scenic areas and body predators … except maybe Hawaii.

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