Walking the Papio Trail | 36th to 72nd Street | Omaha, NE | March 2021
As the temperature is warming up and summer is quickly approaching, we are getting more serious about training and preparing for our hiking plans this year. At home, that looks like dehydrating fruit and preparing other healthy and space-efficient trail snacks. And now when we go for walks, we carry our backpacks filled with camping and hiking supplies to get accustomed to their weight.
We’ve enjoyed visiting our favorite lake parks over the winter, but lately we’ve been looking for a change of scenery without having to drive too far. Fortunately, Omaha has extensive bike trails all over the city that connect many of the parks. Since we’re training to walk for long distances, we’ve taken to walking these trails small sections at a time while carrying our backpacks. I wouldn’t say we feel the need to hike the entirety of these trails, but I’m sure as time goes along we’ll end up covering a good amount.
We began today’s walk on the West Papio Trail at the lot off of 36th Street in Bellevue. It was chilly enough to need jackets, but not uncomfortably cold. We’ve realized that this fleeting time of year is possibly the best time for outdoor adventures, especially for Charlotte’s sake. She did a great job in the cool air with cloud covered skies, but just one week later we tried again on a sunny day and she was not a fan. (The entire trail is exposed to the sun, so in hindsight it wasn’t our best idea to subject her to that.)
Altogether, the walk was just over 6 miles between the two roads. It was far enough from the major roads so that we weren’t hearing traffic the entire time, and we even spotted a bald eagle on a high voltage tower on our walk back. The most interesting thing we passed on this stretch were grounds for a renaissance fair/pumpkin patch fun park. While walking by, we heard what we can only assume was the loud call from a peacock which had Charlotte very concerned.
The real highlight for this stretch of trail is that the trailhead is right next to a Culver’s! We obviously had to stop and treat ourselves for all our hard work today.