Where should I walk today? I love walking at Vadnais-Snail Lakes Regional Park, but I have written about it before. How long has it been, two years? Well, I’ve seen this park go through some changes since then. In addition, more changes are in the plans. Variations in water levels have forced rerouting of trails. Yes, this is where I will walk today.
It is New Year’s Day. My plan is to create one map that will have ALL the trails in one red line. I am curious. What will the distance be?
Small loop first. 0.6 miles. That is exactly one kilometer. So a person could just do loops here if they wanted to do a specific km distance. Interesting.
Now cutting through to the Reiland Lane path. Not as many people have walked here yet. The snow is bumpy and a little hard to walk in. Some have sledded right on the path. And why not? It is a nice hill. Many people are sledding over on the big hill. It is a nice day for it.
This trail along the shore of Snail Lake is beautiful! Snow is heavy on the branches. I notice someone is walking a dog on the ice. Strange, he doesn’t seem to be walking toward any of the ice houses and he doesn’t seem to be walking in deep snow. Wait. There is a trail of cleared snow on the ice. If I had ice skates with me I would put them on at this point. Is it a public or private path? There are no signs, others are walking on it, so out of curiosity I will follow it as far as it goes.
I’m halfway around the lake and I see people walking on the other side. This trail DOES go all the way around! I am so glad the weather is not too windy. This is very pleasant. OK, almost back around to the parking lot now. I’m actually feeling like I prefer to end my walk, get back home and paint. This is turning out to be an awesome New Year’s Day. I am curious what the distance would be if I could combine all my hiking maps of this park into one route, but that curiosity can wait.
Now back at home after painting, I am curious about what was decided about the flooded areas of this park. Sure it is fine for walking in the winter, but I want to still be able to walk loop trails here in the spring. Dear reader, if you are interested, you can find more information about the planned changes and habitat restoration at the Ramsey County website. I see that the 30 day public comment period for this plan ends on January 7, 2021. You still have time, but not much. My opinion is that the plan is fine as it is. If you disagree, please let me know!
I’m glad they are planning to install boardwalks in the areas that have flooded. I’m also glad they are restoring the vegetation. So many of the trees died from sitting in floodwater the past few years. It does make me sad to see the once thriving forest now filled with stumps. Change is always with us. At least efforts are underway to heal and restore this area.
Just like last time I wrote about this park, The Grass Lake section will be in a future post. The proposed boardwalk for the south end will complete a loop that I look forward to exploring.