Tuesday, May 17, 2011

South Dakota Freehike

Can one find a place to freehike in the mid-west? I did today!

Over the last few weeks, PJ and I have traveled from Southern California, through Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, and Nebraska – driving nude most of the way - and have reached Arlington, South Dakota, where we have been visiting a daughter and grandchildren. It’s been fun visiting those we love, and yesterday I helped put in their garden – clothed – oh well.

Today I had some free time since PJ and driven into Sioux Falls to help another daughter, so I decided to walk along the roads to pick asparagus. I didn’t find any, but several miles out of town I came upon a nice wooded section of land bordering a large corn field, cut down to just brown stubs from last season. It looked just too inviting, so I decided it was time for a freehike.

I stepped through the woods, stripped, and wandered naked along the edge of the cornfield for about 15 minutes until the wooded area neared the road and petered out. Hiking nude outdoors always feels so wonderfully freeing – I guess that’s way it’s called freehiking. I walked back to where I’d started, and dressed, prepared to return to town.

On the way back I noticed a dirt road that passed through extensive, stubbled cornfields. Walking down this detour I realized that the land rolled, leaving shallow valleys in the fields through which one could walk without being seen. It was time for another, longer freehike.

I walked far enough down the dirt road so I couldn’t be seen from the main road, except perhaps from afar. At a shallow valley in a field I stepped off the dirt road, again stripped to my brown, naked and natural self, and hiked out into the open field. The day was clear, the sun warmed my skin, the temperature was just right for freehiking, and a nice breeze constantly brushed against my entire bare body. No bothersome bugs. It was soooo natural and wonderful to be freehiking once again.

Along the way I jumped up rabbits, ducks, pheasants, and even a white-tailed deer. Experiencing and observing nature is such an integral aspect of freehiking.

Occasionally, I’d reach a rise in the land and see a truck pass by on the distant road, so far away that it would be impossible for the driver to see that I was as naked as God made me, hiking through the corn fields.

As I neared town, just when I had about decided to get dressed, I came upon a marshy area that diverted me away from town a little way. That turned out to be fortunate. I stayed naked.

Eventually, I reached a row of trees, four wide, that been planted by a business on the edge of town, so I just continued walking naked through the trees until I was only 25 yards from the first road in town. It was finally time to get dressed again.

As I returned to our daughter’s house, it felt so very good knowing that I had enjoyed an hour freehiking through the flat cornfields of South Dakota, and to realize that with just a little care, one can enjoy the love of freehiking nearly anywhere.


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