It’s officially winter here in the stateline.

We were very fortunate to get through December with very mild temperatures. I even wore shorts on Christmas. It was awesome. I know some were dismayed by the lack of a “white” Christmas, but I’m fine with putting it off as long as possible.

As long as possible lasted until about January 1st of this year when we got a first major snowstorm and our first dose of frigid temperatures. Winter’s bill had finally come due and we pay for it by being very uncomfortable and possibly mildly depressed for about 6 weeks.

January stinks. Then we’ll get one or two nice days around Valentine’s Day before second winter shows up. We generally ignore second winter, it’s a very stubborn Midwestern trait, and are just perpetually cold until spring shows up.

What I’m saying is this is going to be a tough month and a half coming up. You can attack it two ways. You can never go outside and be angry for 6 weeks OR you can go out and enjoy the “unique” season of winter that we experience here in the Midwest.

I’ll be honest. I’ve usually fallen in the former camp. I don’t like the cold and hate being damp but I’ve also been kind of depressed for approximately 35 consecutive winters. I think I’ll try something new this year and try to enjoy the beautiful scenery that a freshly fallen winter snow can provide.

It just so happens that we have a WONDERFUL spot right here in town to such activities at Rock Cut State Park.

The website highlights 5 trails at Rock Cut that are open year round. So grab some nice boots, layer up, don’t forget the sunglasses, and embrace the Midwestern beauty that is freshly fallen snow at one of the best state parks in Illinois on one of these 5 trails in Rock Cut State Park.

1. Rock Cut Park Main Loop

This 3.2 mile loop has mild elevation changes and is a great easy hike that you can knock out in a few hours with some great views along Pierce Lake.

2. Pierce Lake Trail

This 3.6 mile loop is a little more difficult than the main loop but offers great views of every side of Pierce Lake. …….


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