When I first relocated to Louisville, there was one thing that worried me - where would I go hiking? In Michigan, I hiked a lot, and there were an abundance of places to do it. They say you’re never more than five miles from a body of water in Michigan, and I would say that probably goes for hiking trails as well. You could imagine my surprise when I moved down - the city is full of parks, and there is a bunch of hiking to be done! I’m hiking a lot of these trails for the first time, and the season for getting outside is finally upon us (for longer than 48 or so hours), and so I figured I’d share my experiences with you. Whenever I hike a trail, I’m going to write about it here, so check out my recommendations and see where the best spots are!
Today we went to Waverly Park, which has a bunch of trails. We took the dog with us, and since he’s a Greyhound with less stamina than the typical dog we decided to do the three mile trail they call the Fresh Air Loop. The scenery was stunning - lots of hills, and plenty of views up and down the ridges that the trail looped along. There were some moderate up-and-down elevations, but nothing too strenuous, and the trail is mostly wooded as well - don’t worry about being baked by the sun.
The biggest drawback to the trail is the lack of signage - there were indicators for major trail splits (The Clinic Loop buds off the Fresh Air, for example), but we came across lots of forks that weren’t marked at all. I’m not talking about tiny little deer paths either - a lot of them had the same amount of width and wear that the main trail did, and it left us wondering quite a few times where we ought to go. To add to that predicament, maps aren’t freely available - they’re $10 and only available at the park office. You can print one, but in our case we were left without a map in hand on the trail. Further, the printable map doesn’t show the splits in the trail, making it a bit useless for clarifying where you are when you come to a questionable fork.
The trail also contained some serious patches of Poison Ivy. It was plenty wide in those areas, but a false step or jumping aside for a mountain biker could put you in a seriously itchy spot.
Overall, I’d say the walk was still highly enjoyable - the scenery was beautiful, and most of the trail is far enough from any roads to make it a nice retreat into nature. On a five star scale, I’d say 3.5 to 4.
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