Sunnyvale Park on the West side of Wausau. This is an ideal place if you want a scenic but easy hike. The small "lake" is man-made and has a wide hiking trail around its perimeter. There is a sandy beach with bathrooms, volleyball pits and picnic shelters. One side of the park features an open area for model airplane flying ~ you can hear the buzz of the aircrafts in the air on most days. If you follow the occasional foot-paths through the woods, you'll end up on the bank of the Big Rib River which flows around the park in little s-shaped twists and turns. When the river is low enough, you can walk through the shallows to the little islands dotted throughout. Last summer I threw a tennis ball across the river onto an island for Charlie to fetch ~ she LOVES to swim ~ but she didn't see where it landed; it's still there.
I didn't really have time to hike all the way around the lake, but Charlie was having so much fun and I was inspired to take pictures of all the beauty around us. So the lesson to take away from today's hike: even though you don't have a lot of time and the weather is not cooperating, you can have a good hike if you just let the mood take over you. Typically once you motivate yourself and get out there ~ even when you don't feel like it ~ it'll be worth it!