Hiking in Fontenelle Forest

This weekend Josh and I did something we’ve never done before: we went hiking together!

The weather on Sunday was perfect. 60 degrees and sunny. In January? We’ll take it! After I finished an awesome Zumba class we ate lunch and headed to Fontenelle Forest. We had never been but heard great things and have wanted to check it out for a while. We’re also making it a priority to have more “active dates”. We love going out to eat and seeing movies (We saw Saving Mr. Banks on Saturday and loved it!) but want to make sure we’re getting moving even when we’re not working out. We really want to be an active couple so we have to start taking steps to get there.

We started off on natural paths just walking around and choosing directions as they came up. It was so fun just getting to be together in nature, talking and exploring. Some of the paths were a little muddy from recent rain. Right as I was saying, “I think I’m pretty good at this hiking thing,” I stepped on a mud slick and almost slid down a hill. That made me laugh. ;p

After about an hour on the natural trails we stumbled across the wooden trails. These are maintained year round by the park so people can access them. They warned today that a tree had fallen and was blocking part of the path. When we came across it we just decided to cross it. It felt like an outdoor jungle gym.

We came across some beautiful scenery. This is the Mississippi River.

A frozen pond.

Downtown Omaha (and our apartment) way far off in the distance.

After an hour on the wooden trails we ended up back at the main entrance. We lucked out that we chose paths that converged so perfectly since there’s over 19 miles of trails in Fontenelle Forest. At the main entrance we sat at a picnic table and had dinner. We picked up pretzel rolls, brie, apples, and peach jam from Whole Foods on Saturday just for the occasion. It was delicious!

On the way out of the forest we made sure to take a picture with these statues. We actually ran into a book signing by the creator of these statues (and author of a book describing them) in Midtown Crossing a month or so ago. We loved the story of these characters and ended up buying the book. Ever since then we’ve wanted to check out Fontenelle Forest. I love that the forest was as wonderful as the book describes, and that we got to see the characters. They look sort of ridiculous but they’re part of a very touching story. We had so much fun at the forest we ended up getting a yearly membership on the way out. We want to come back a lot on more active dates.

After the hike we decided it would be nice to end the day with dessert. We ended up trying Nicola’s Italian Wine and Fare in Old Market. Yelp reviews raved about their Italian lemon cream cake, and whenever I see a brownie and ice cream pairing on a dessert menu I get excited. We decided to get one of each to share and a cup of coffee. I was very proud of myself in that I didn’t eat until there was nothing left on the plate but just ate until I was full. The desserts were delicious, especially the Italian lemon cream cake. It was a wonderful end to a great day.

Questions of the Day: Have you gone hiking before? Are you a fan?


  1. says

    I love hiking and we have such great weather here – 80s in January! I’m hiking every other weekend right now but wish it was every weekend. I just can’t go by myself.

    I too love little obstacles – makes me feel more hardcore. :)

  2. says

    Oh my gosh,we hike ALL THE TIME here in California! Love to take the family on all day hikes, we back the backpacks and head out. Sometimes they go smoothly, sometimes they turn into journeys and adventures as we have gotten totally stuck vertically on huge slopes and hills, lost in the thick of woods, but always come out laughing and loving it.
    I have some great hiking stories and pictures on my blog if you ever want to check them out {Randoms Talk/Motherhood/Family}. So glad you enjoyed your day:)

  3. Michelle says

    Fontenelle Forest is a great place – no two hikes are the same, even on the same trails! Make sure you check out the Wetlands, too! Enjoy the quiet wild in our backyard, and thank you for sharing your journey with us!

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