The hike this morning (9 miles in all) was more eventful than usual. After hiking for an hour in the dark (part of which was on a wrong trail – hey, it had to end somewhere!), I ended up at the point where Piney Creek ran into Table Rock Lake. This was where I had really wanted to be anyway, so I composed the picture below (a blended image). The only problem I had was that once I stopped hiking, I was immediately swarmed by horseflies. I must have looked pretty funny as I randomly flailed my arms trying to keep them off of me. They drove me away before the sun came up (the color would have bee a little bit richer than what I’ve pictured here, but not by much – it wasn't a very spectacular sunrise).
Piney Creek before sunrise
Later on in the morning, when I was not intending to take any more pictures, I ran across a section of trail with some pretty nice flowers, so I had to stop.
False Dragonhead (2-image panorama)
I don't know what this one is! (Update 8-24-05 Don Kurz identified this as one of the 17 species of beggar's lice here in Missouri - who knew they had any redeeming value!)
Ouch – with the heat and humidity, I bonked pretty bad while climbing the last big hill on the way out. I just had no energy, wasn’t recovering from the exertion of climbing and had to rest quite a few times. This has only happened to me once before, and about the only thing you can do is grit it out. It was pretty miserable, though – can’t wait until cooler weather.