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Backpacker Magazine – June 2012

Trail Mix: Central

Explore Chicago's wild places, seek out solitude, and experience three perfect days, all this summer.

by: Rachel Zurer and Stuart Peck

Explore: Chicago’s Wild Places
Morton Arboretum Heritage Trail
Stroll native ironwood, sugar maple, and ash on this 1.6-miler through the north side of Morton Arboretum, a living museum that’s home to more than 3,400 species of trees and plants (Trip ID* 554127). Download GPS Trails, our free smartphone navigation app, to check out 20 more Chicago-area dayhikes.

3 Perfect Days
Green Bay, WI: Hartman Creek
This 3.9-mile, figure-eight loop meanders the shores of glacial lakes under a mixed forest of hardwoods and pine. Bring suits to swim at Hartman Lake’s 300-foot-long sand beach, then stop for fresh curds (a local delicacy) at the Union Star Cheese Factory ( Trip ID 8253  

San Antonio, TX: Lost Maples State Park
Spot wild pig and armadillos, then dip into a cliff-shaded swimming hole on this 4.8-mile Hill Country loop. On the way home, grab a burger and a slice of pie (before 3 p.m.) and pick your own fruit (blackberries are ripe in June) at Love Creek Orchards ( Trip ID 250161

St. Louis, MO: Taum Sauk Mountain This rugged 11.2-mile out-and-back on the Ozark Trail winds to Missouri’s highest peak (1,772 feet) and tallest waterfall (132 feet). Little known: Missouri is actually the U.S.’s oldest wine country. Head to Weingarten Vineyard (12 miles east of Farmington; for a tasting—Norton is the house specialty. Trip ID 12343

6/2 National Trails Day
Spotlight: Kansas City, KS
Help build new sections of trail at Wyandotte County Lake Park ( Find an event near you:

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