Moore State Park – Paxton

Two trips in one weekend?  Definitely!

With the weather improving greatly, we decided to take another day hike, this one with our daughter.  Jess suggested Moore State Park in Paxton, which she had stumbled on in the past when researching hiking locations in the area.  We’d driven past it several times when driving North on Route 31, but never stopped.

Our daughter enjoys hiking but prefers geocaching to a vanilla hike.  Knowing we’re headed to a destination and that once we get there we’ll find a box full of goodies gives her incentive to keep moving.  There are several caches hidden at this park, and with that carrot dangling ahead of her, we packed her up and headed North.

(Here’s a trail map, if you want to follow along.)

We parked at the closest parking area to the main entrance, and started by exploring the “Healthy Heart Trail” where a few geocaches were hidden.  The highlight of this trail is definitely the Old Sawmill at the end.  We took many pictures and explored the general area for a while, including playing in the leaves near the dam.

066 leafpile

After burning off some energy by the mill, we took the Old Brigham Road trail, an easy wide trail, up to where it meets with Brigham Road.


There, we turned down towards the Stairway Loop Trail (which had some moments which were as steep as stairways) and then explored Judy’s Secret Garden Loop with some beautiful views of the pond.

We paused for a few moments at Enchanta, a covered bridge/pavilion with seating and a nice view of the water.  Then, rejuvenated, we headed back towards the Davis Rd. Trail, which we explored briefly (just long enough to find a geocache) before our little one ran out of gas and sent us back to the parking lot.

With about 3.3 miles covered, it was a respectable hike for our daughter who has limitless energy but tends to get bored without a concrete objective.  We were impressed by the general cleanliness and upkeep of the park and will return someday to explore the trails we didn’t get to.