About Danielle Huddleston Photography:

I am a wife, homeschool mom, a hiker, and a photographer living in Oklahoma. I love beautiful light and being in the woods. I share what I love on this blog, be they trails, pictures, or homschooling curriculum. Thanks for stopping by!

  • Tag: ‘national forest’

    Shawnee Nation Forest ~Southern Illinois

    Wednesday, May 31st, 2017

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    The Rim Rock Trail in the Shawnee National Forest was nice and easy with some pretty views.

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    We also saw a snake climbing a tree!

    But the winner of Shawnee National Forest for us was definitely the Garden of the Gods Trail!

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    It had an easy walking path, beautiful views, amazing light because of it being late in the day and…

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    My kids loved climbing on all the rocks.

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    He takes his photo bombing seriously…

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    Even little bit loves to climb.

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    My kids were like “Path? What path?”

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    We just had to keep an eye on what was on the other side of their climbs.

    Thankfully there were plenty of rocks nowhere near the edge.

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    This was a huge hit!

    So glad we found this beautiful hike!

    Bighorn National Forest, Wyoming

    Thursday, September 26th, 2013

    trailday2We hiked twice in the Bighorn National Forest.

    Once on the way to Glacier National Park and once on the way back.

    We found both hikes using the trail.com app.

    bighornThe first hike was at Circle Park.

    It is pretty close to the interstate from Buffalo, WY. so it does not take long to get there.

    laketrailcloudusThe 5.6 mile loop we did had several lakes on it.

    lakeview lake3 photo crossingbridge

    almostfellI almost fell in this pic.

    I knew that was a possibility since I am clumsy but I thought it was worth the risk.

    For the second hike we drove a little further in to the West Tensleep Trailhead.

    westtenWe decided to take the trailhead to Helen Lake.

    We did not really know how far it was but I thought it was just a few miles.

    I try to keep these opinions to myself because I am a horrible judge of distance, as I found out over and over on this trip…

    cloudpeakIf you hike into the Cloud Peak Wilderness you have to register.

    There is a place for that at the trailheads.

    ohgoodabrigeThere is a water crossing.

    We did not see a bridge and the place the horses cross was way too deep so this was our crossing.

    crossinglogsThis is me telling myself over and over “I do yoga, I got this, I will not fall”.

    I really did not want Nick to get a picture of me falling.


    wherearewe mapI could not handle the whole “hiking to a lake somewhere ahead of us anymore” and decided to try and figure out the distance.

    I used a folded up tissue to measure.

    Eye balling it does not work for me…

    I just stopped hiking and sat down to do this.

    I figured Nick would notice eventually.

    It ended up being over 11 miles round trip.

    helenlakeHelen Lake

    We took a different trail back which added onto the miles and elevation climb.

    I did not know about the elevation.

    I would have chosen to go back the easier way!

    This was supposed to be my easy hike after  a lot of hard ones in Glacier, my poor legs had been told easy all morning.

    lasthikeI had a lot of moments where I thought we should turn back and that I had made a big mistake!

    Like when they made me climb a little hill…

    flat upontopI think my biggest “maybe I made a bad choice” moment was when we were up here with a storm approaching and no sign of the trail down.

    It did have beautiful views though.

    mountviewsAnd I felt like I was in a different world.


    The wind was blowing in the storm and we were freezing so we were both REALLY happy to see the trail down!

    deer babydeer momdeerWe saw these deer on our drive out of the forest.

    There were so many we did not even pause anymore when one of us would say “deer”.

    lightningsunset lightningLighting at sunset.

    This place is beautiful!

    I definitely want to go back.

    Maybe someday I will be able to hike to the top of Cloud Peak!

    Of course I would probably have to start training now…

    Ouachita National Forest ~Ouachita National Recreational Trail, OK

    Friday, May 25th, 2012

    Over Mother’s day weekend we went camping and hiking in the Ouachita National Forest in SE Oklahoma.

    It is one of my favorite places to go when I am feeling crowded.

    I did not mean to plan this trip on Mother’s day but it was a perfect way to celebrate!

    We had planned on camping in the Winding Stair Campground off of OK 1 but it was not open yet so we stayed in the backpackers camp instead.

    There is a vault toilet right by the parking lot and water at the camp.

    Both campgrounds have beautiful views! I loved it!

    We did a small 2mile hike on Friday night after we got the tent all setup.

    It was on the Winding Stair Mt. trail.

    So peaceful and beautiful.

    Saturday morning we took the Honda to the trailhead of the Ouachita National Recreational Trail at US 259.

    We were hiking back to the Winding Stair Mt. campground (where we left our tent), camping that night and heading back to the vehicle Sunday morning.

    I found the hike at backpacker.com, here.

    The trailhead sign near the camp says that it is just under 7miles one way but Nicks GPS and backpacker both said closer to 8miles.

    The total length of the Ouachita National Recreational trail is 192 miles.

    It would be so much fun to do the whole thing!

    It rained all night long Friday night so the river was a little high but still passable.

    We took a lot of breaks!

    It is a little more work doing long hikes with kids but totally worth it!

    We told stories, sang, and did a game where you have to listen for 5 different sounds, to try and keep the boys in good moods.

    My handsome man.

    The boys actually did best while doing the most difficult part of the hike.

    You have to go up the mountain in a series of switchbacks and it is quite the climb.

    They were a train the whole way up though so they loved it.

    We made it back to camp in about 5hours.

    Not bad for a 4 and 5yr old!

    The above picture is the boys looking for a bird to catch for dinner.

    WAY too much survivorman!

    They did NOT get one thankfully.

    So happy and proud!

    We played a little go fish.

    Trying to dry gear out after the constant rain.

    It is a good thing I absolutely love to hike in the rain!

    I smiled a lot.

    Their pet.

    Happy Mother’s Day to me!

    It was so hard to leave but we needed to start the hike back to the Honda.

    I am glad it was so pretty because my legs were not feeling the early morning climb.

    I kept encouraging the boys but I kept thinking, I do not want to do it EITHER!

    I told them the story of the little engine that could and we kept saying, “I think I can, I think I can!” until we made it to the top.

    They make me smile.

    The one who puts up with all my crazy ideas.

    So exhausted!

    It was beautiful and if you have never been and live in the area, GO!!!!