Take a hike at Boone Cliffs in Boone County Kentucky
Summer is sadly drawing to a close. I don’t want to admit it.
Usually, by this time, I am ready for the kids to go back to school. But, not this year. The summer has flown by and I am not ready for that big yellow bus to pull into my court. We don’t have much time left!! I want to savor every last minute and help the kids create fun memories.
My kids, on the other hand, are fighting like cats and dogs! I struggle with what to do about this.
Last Friday I decided we needed to get out of the house and away from everything and everyone. We needed to be alone as a family and away from electronics. That’s sometimes hard to do when you live in a crowded suburb 10 minutes from the city.
We headed to Boone Cliffs.
I had heard of it before and a friend told me she visited with her kids the other day. I searched on line and found directions. Boone Cliffs is located in Boone County off of Hwy 18. From I-75, take exit #181 west 5 miles to Burlington. Continue on KY 18 for 6 miles, where Middle Creek Road intersects from the left. Turn left and proceed for 1.9 miles and you’ll see parking on the left. It’s a very small lot with a very small sign, so be on the look out! The official address is 4990 Middle Creek Road, Burlington KY 41005. Boone Cliffs is 74 acres of old growth forest and several 20 to 40 foot cliff formations.
Boone Cliffs was just what we needed. I did not look at the trail map very hard before we left the house, so you may want to do this to prepare. We headed out on Trail A once we arrived. I found out it was about 1.7 miles! And, can you believe the kids did not complain once? The trail was definitely challenging as it had several downed trees in the way and there was one very steep incline in the beginning. But, my 5, 7 and 11 year old did great.
We came across our first felled tree and I almost turned back, discouraged. Then I remembered my childhood. A fallen tree over a trail would not have phased me. It would have been an adventure. Sometimes I shelter the kids too much and do not let them test their independence. So, over the tree we went. I should have taken a picture, because this was not just a log in the way, but a full grown tree probably full of critters.
Next up was the steep hill…another point at which I felt we should turn back. Nope. I told my younger two to turn around, sit on their bottoms and crab walk up the hill. Done! Mission accomplished!
We traveled down the trail past wild ferns, gorgeous purple butterflies and tall trees. I pointed out sassafras and let the kids smell the leaves. They learned to identify poison ivy, because it flanked the trail in spots. We took breaks on the rustic park benches periodically along the trail. And we enjoyed the view from the top of the small cliff at the start of the trail.
It took us one hour to hike the trail. During the hour, there was not one single argument or complaint. There were only shouts of excitement and giggles. I think I heard the Hallelujah Chorus when the trees opened and we got off the trail.
In hindsight, I would have brought snacks and more water. We had one bottle to share. There were plenty of park benches for resting.
Some advice from the park:
- There is no cell phone coverage.
- Do not hike alone.
- These trails are NOT paved.
- Let someone know you’re going to this park before you leave.
- Wear appropriate hiking attire.
- Do not go off the trail if at all possible.
- This park is closed during hunting season.
Advice from me:
- Wear old tennis shoes with good traction or hiking boots
- Bring light snacks and water
- If you don’t want to hike the whole trail, go to the over look, which is right past the super steep hill (you can’t miss it!) and turn back
- If you can make it over the steep hill, you can do the rest of the trail…there is nothing steeper!!
This is a great cool weather hike and would be beautiful in the Fall. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did!
When not blogging for Family Friendly Cincinnati, you can find Michelle writing at her personal blog, I’m Living the Good Life.