Sun rays intermingle with smoke from a campfire, and a light breeze strokes my cheek as I ride my bike through the Sweetgum Loop of Sam Houston National Forest.
The trees provide just enough shade, and the air temperature is just right. Daniel rides the tandem with M-girl perched on the back seat, while K-girl and G-boy ride their bikes as fast as they can; round and round the loop they go.
Eventually, we convince M-girl to ride her bike with the training wheels, and she’s proud of herself for making it up the hill that’s a little steep for a 4-year-old. She beams as she looks back, her eyes saying, “did you see what I just did?” Yes, my sweetheart, I did. After I tell her, “you did a great job going up that hill,” she smiles wider and returns to the task at hand.
Later, I go for a short bike ride on my own, out of the loop and around the forest. The trees and water bring me peace, and it’s nice to be out in nature one more time.
We decide to stay overnight at the campground. The price is reasonable, and the forest is alive with the sound of happy campers, children and adults alike. Tomorrow, we’ll go biking again.
What is your favourite conservation area?