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National Trails Day - Hike Des Lacs National Wildlife Refuge

We'll go to the Headquarters (which will be closed, but there is an information kiosk) to look at maps.

We'll hike Taskers Coulee Hiking Trail (2 miles) and have lunch at a picnic area near that trail.  http://www.fws.gov/refuges/trails/refuge.cfm?orgcode=62570.

We'll also hike the Canada Goose Nature Trail (6 miles). Here's some info. about the Canada Goose Trail from a few years ago http://www.kenmarend.com/kenmare-news/features/canada-goose-trail-opens-friday-on-des-lacs-nwr-for-wildlife-observation-opportunities/.

We'll drive at least part of the 19-mile Des Lacs National Wildlife Refuge Scenic Backway, listed as one of the top 10 drives on US National Wildlife Refuges http://www.gorp.com/parks-guide/travel-ta-scenic-drives-bombay-hook-national-wildlife-refuge-bosque-del-apache-national-wildlife-refuge-lower-klamath-national-wildlife-refuge-tule-lake-national-wildlife-refuge-sidwcmdev_148259.html?page=2.

And, optionally, visit Pointe of View Winery on our way home.  They have wine,  cheese, Pride of Dakota products, a short hiking trail through a wooded area, and a gorgeous view of the Souris River Valley.

Des Lacs National Wildlife Refuge map http://atfiles.org/files/pdf/DesLacMap.pdf

Schedule:

Those that want to carpool from Bismarck:  meet at the north end of the K-Mart parking lot and leave at 7:30 AM.

Proceed to a rural church parking lot east of Wilton http://goo.gl/maps/e6sUX.  Meet me and my husband there at 8:00 am (we live northeast of Bismarck and this is a convenient spot for us).  We can carpool/caravan from that point taking a few miles of gravel, then Highway 41 (if some carpool with us, you could leave your car in the parking lot). 

If you are joining the hike from somewhere else, we should arrive at the Headquarters by about 10:45 am. We can exchange phone numbers and I'll let you know when we leave the church and Velva.  My phone number is[masked]-0973.

We'll take Highway 41 to Velva, getting off the well-worn Highway 83 route to Minot.  We'll stop at gas station in Velva in case people have had too much coffee that morning ;) or forgot water or a snack. 

Then take Highway 52 to Minot, and on to Kenmare, then the Refuge Headquarters (not open on weekends, but has information kiosk open) 
Drive to Tasker's Coulee picnic area and have sack lunch
Hike Tasker's Coulee (2 miles) 
Drive to Canada Goose Trail  
Hike Canada Goose Trail (6 miles, some could do all, some could do part and go back to start to move vehicles; this is 6 miles one end to the other, with one-way traffic, so we either need to do part, turn around and get vehicles, or have a few people do a shorter version and go back to start to move vehicles to the end).

Some could return home at this point others could do the optional extension.

Optional: Go to Pointe of View Winery near Minot (between refuge and Minot; winery closes at 6 pm).
Hike their trail (1/4 mile, through trees, with a beautiful view of the Souris River Valley)
Return home via Highway 83.

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  • Karen R.

    Terry said the hike was ritickulously enjoyable.

    June 8, 2014

  • Linda

    I really enjoyed the day with you all and was pleasantly surprised with the area. What a hidden gem! Thanks Karen for the arrangements and Leanne for driving. A glass of wine was the perfect ending to a great day.

    1 · June 8, 2014

  • Kris

    It was another adventurous time with this group. I was glad to meet many new people. I'm excited to try the wine tomorrow too ;)

    1 · June 7, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Thanks Karen for a fantastic trip - your planning was top rate as always, thanks to Leanne for driving, and thanks to everyone who came because we all know it's the people who make an outing.

    1 · June 7, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Beautiful place. Perfect weather. Perfect length / time.

    1 · June 7, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    I would like a spot with you Leanne if possible. See you at the Kmart (assume this is the one off Exit 159).

    1 · June 6, 2014

    • Karen R.

      Yes, just off of State Street.

      June 6, 2014

  • Linda

    I would like to attend and would appreciate a ride with someone. See you all at Kmart's lot.

    1 · June 6, 2014

    • Karen R.

      Glad you can join us Linda.

      June 6, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    I would be interested in carpooling. Can meet in Wilton or at the Kmart in Bismarck.

    June 4, 2014

  • Sigrida R.

    I would also like to carpool and visit the winery. I'll meet everyone at the church near Wilton and see how the carpooling shakes out.

    1 · June 4, 2014

  • Kris

    I'd like to carpool...if needed I can drive too. I'd also like to visit the winery.

    1 · June 3, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Hi Karen,
    I would like to carpool. Do you still have room in your car? If yes, I meet you east of Wilton?

    Winery sounds great too.

    1 · June 3, 2014

  • Karen R.

    Please post if you want to carpool with someone or have room in your vehicle. We have room for 2 in ours and we do plan to stop at the winery.

    June 3, 2014

  • Karen R.

    Munch's Coulee (which was the shortest hike, 1 mile) is inaccessible because the road is closed due to heavy rain over the weekend.

    June 3, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    I'm interested, but have to see how my week goes.

    1 · May 31, 2014

  • Karen R.

    I updated the schedule. I'll call the Wildlife Refuge next week to get some details from them, then we can discuss carpooling.

    May 23, 2014

  • Matthew S.

    I was looking for people to hike with this summer and it looks like I found exactly what I was looking for!

    1 · April 27, 2014

    • Karen R.

      Looking forward to having you join us.

      April 27, 2014

    • Matthew S.

      I'm probably going to be wearing my full backpacking pack just to get a feel for it and see if I like it before I go on an overnight trip. Hopefully people won't think that's too weird haha.

      1 · April 28, 2014

  • Karen R.

    This is a couple months off, but I'm announcing it now to get the date on your calendar and to encourage you to get some hiking miles in between now and National Trails Day. This hike would be up to 9.25 miles, but in four pieces with breaks, with an option for one of them to be shorter, so this would be a good hike for a variety of fitness levels. It's also in a beautiful area.

    April 6, 2014

  • Karen R.

    Get Your Goose On!
    \ ˈɡɛt jʊr ɡus ɒn \ v1:

    The act of hiking, bird watching, fishing, and otherwise experiencing with childlike wonder America’s great outdoors at National Wildlife Refuges across America.

    March 31, 2014

  • Rachel L.

    This event sounds fantastic!

    1 · September 20, 2013

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