Of walks in 99 counties, local lake is favorite

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By TAMMY PEARSON Adair County Free Press
Barb Huston has walked in all of Iowa's counties.
photo by Tammy Pearson/Adair County Free Press
After having walked in all 99 counties in Iowa, Barb Huston of St. Charles decided that Greenfield Lake was among her favorite spots, so she returns regularly, not only to walk, but to visit shops in town.

From April through September of 2014, Barb Huston of St. Charles reached her goal of walking in every county in Iowa. And, in the end, one place ranked as her number one favorite walking spot — Greenfield Lake.

Since then she has returned to Adair County regularly to walk around the lake and do some shopping while in town.

“I definitely had my favorites,” said Huston, “and Greenfield Lake was number one. It had all I needed,” she said, citing the beautiful scenery of the park and shelters. She said she enjoys seeing “ducks and little goslings,” as well as the wind turbines on the horizon. 

Huston said she has “always been a walker,” and once she started on her 99-county goal, she found it was “very addictive” — and a great activity for her retirement.

She often walks with relatives and her walks vary from half to three miles. She would “hit four or five counties” on a day’s outing. Although not all counties had the best trails, Huston said she found interesting places in all of the counties. Of course, she also encountered lots of mosquitoes in the more “primitive parks” where she walked.

However, she did not run across any snakes or skunks, so considers herself lucky.

Her final county to visit was Lafayette, and she may have had one of her biggest adventures there, getting lost. After finding cell phone reception in a meadow, she called her husband, who found someone to give her directions.

To celebrate reaching her 99-county goal, Huston said she treated herself to a Midnight Truffle Blizzard.

Upon returning from her walks, she made quilt blocks to commemorate each county. Although each block has an identical pattern, the colors of each are based on the location‘s first letter. Therefore, the Greenfield, Adair County, block features the colors green and apricot.

Huston said her time at Lake Greenfield may help her cross of another item on her “bucket list.” She said she would like to catch a walleye and has heard that Lake Greenfield has some.

Huston said she recognizes that a lot of hard work goes into keeping Lake Greenfield so nice and appreciates it.

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