Wakaw Hills Hike Epilogue – Nov 6, 2016
By Cliff Speer, Hike Leader
Well, records were broken on this hike! The semi-tropical weather reached a record-breaking 20º C and our hiker count hit a record 42! Nothing like unusually balmy late fall weather to flush everyone out of the woodwork!
Our trek took us into the wild and wooly country of the Minichinas Hills, northwest of Wakaw. We followed a route I had fashioned out of a maze of forested trails once used by the Wakaw snowmobile club. I had connected the old trail network via rolling grain fields, old gravel exploration tracks and abandoned pits to create a great variety of trailside scenery and terrain. The entire circuit amounted to approximately 11-12 km. I’m estimating because my bike mileage counter got dislodged by all the trailside vegetation while pre-hike scouting & trail clearing.
I said variety in terrain, which is sort of a euphemism for lots of hills! It didn’t take long for my announcement, “This is the last big hill!” to become a joke from being heard too often! The continuous change in elevation was designed to prevent anyone from getting too relaxed en route!
We stopped for lunch at an abandoned pioneer farmstead that is being gradually overgrown by its own former shelterbelt. Mid-afternoon, we took a break at the abandoned snowmobile clubhouse # 2. No evidence in the area on the whereabouts of shack # 1.
After negotiating a few ups & downs through old pits and more forested trails, we exited onto a scenic winding grid road taking us back to the trailhead and our vehicles. A short drive brought us to St. Theresa Church in Wakaw to feed the hungry multitudes. After all, it was the last supper (and the last hike of the season)!