From 2009 to 2012, Granger hiked over 1,000 miles on hiking trails in seven different states. Wendy began joining him on most hikes in 2013, and the pace slacked off once the novel trails within easy driving range were exhausted, but we still enjoy the pastime.
Thus far Granger’s favorite hikes have been:
- Oregon’s Saddle Mountain and Eagle Creek
- Colorado’s Piedra River, Williams Creek, and Alberta Peak
- Arkansas’ Mount Nebo
- Oklahoma’s Robbers Cave and Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge
- Missouri’s Roaring River
- Kansas’s Elk City Lake
To read about the day hikes, you have several options. You can click Day Hike in the category cloud in the lower right-hand column to see those posts in reverse chronological order, or get the same effect by visiting happywanderer.us. But if you’d like to see where they have been and focus on a particular spot, you can use the custom Google Map or Google Spreadsheet.
Click on a map marker to bring up the name of each hike and links to any blog posts and photo sets from it. You can drag and zoom the map to your liking.
You can also access a full-page version of the Google Map.
There is a public spreadsheet in Google Docs, tabbed by each calendar year, with entries for each hike and links to each blog post and photo set.
Granger’s Hiking Outfit
Camera: Canon PowerShot SX700 HS
Poles: Leki Corklite Aergon SpeedLock Trekking Poles
Pack: Ascend H1250 Hydration Pack
(Link is to a newer style of that model, picked for its size; we use bottled drinks instead of hydration systems)
Boots: Columbia Fireland Mid Omni-Tech Hiking Boot
Socks: Smartwool Hiking Light Crew Sock
Hat: Tilley TM10
Summer Shirts: wicking T-shirts, such as Under Armour
Summer Long Pants: Magellan Yellowstone Cargo Pants and Railriders Eco-Mesh Pant with Insect Shield
Summer Shorts: Cargo Shorts
Insect Repellent: Cutter Backwoods Unscented
(Cutter doesn’t stink like Off!; applied liberally to bare legs, socks, boots, pant cuffs, hat, etc.)
Hiking GPS: MotionX GPS app on an Apple iPhone
Driving GPS: TomTom GPS app on an Apple iPhone
Audio: Audible audiobooks, The Great Courses lectures, and podcasts on an Apple iPhone
Why Do It?
Granger spent most of his childhood vacations at his parents’ lake home near Roaring River State Park in Missouri and grew up hiking its various trails with family and friends. In his adult life he would go on the occasional hike, but it wasn’t a focus for him until he did some hiking during summer vacations in the cool and beautiful Pacific Northwest.
When Granger returned to Oregon in 2009 for his fifth summer vacation in the Pacific Northwest, he made hiking trails the focus and posted daily blogs and photo uploads, enhanced by his iPhone’s GPS tracking. The feedback from the posts and enjoyment of the experience led him to continually seek out new trails in the region around his home.
Long drives to reach distant trailheads are less appealing for us as a married couple, but thankfully there are several decent trails at the nearby Osage Hills State Park and there is Bartlesville’s Pathfinder Parkway to get in some long walks with minimal driving. And we still include some hiking in most of our vacation plans.