One wrong step could be your last, or maybe making you a little sore and lame. Some tricky stairs and icy trail ahead gave evidence of the recent thaw. The riverbank was a stretch of smooth ice formed, I should have brought my skates. The stairs are at the end of a nice bridge getting you over the stream in the first picture above. It was hard to say which was harder, getting up, or getting down these frozen stairs. They lead to an almost entirely frozen trail so it was best to walk in the snow to the side and exposed leaves. I thought about glaciation and small similarities on my hike this day as the snow and ice moved down the hillside. The dogs didn't care, but a slide off to the river side was often steep and would have been hard to get back up. A trip up the hillside appeared to be less treacherous, but a challenge when coming down another side that had not melted clear of snow. It was 9 F or -13 C on this cold January day, out on the prairie.
Huge slabs of ice dotted the riverbank
Tree shadows streak across the Des Moines River, at Ford's Crossing, along the Mormon Trail.
Still in one piece, thankfully.