Monday, April 11, 2016

Arizona Dreaming . . .

I woke up to 2½” of snow on the ground Saturday morning – not quite what I was looking for on the second weekend of April.  Except for remnants in shady areas, it was gone by evening, and it’s back in the 50s today.  But days like that make me long for the winter warmth of Arizona – which reminded me that I wanted to share more of our hiking pics from our trip in late February.  So if you’re not a fan of my travel anthologies, it might be wise to click on that “X” in the upper right corner of your screen.

I have already shared our first hike and Dad’s mishaps – he’s fine now, and a year older (he turned 80 last week).  The day after those 20 staples graced his scalp, we took Blake with us to the top of Mount Lemmon, about 6,000 feet above Tucson.  This was a hike that Dad and I took two years ago without him and I wanted to share the sights – but I forgot that it took nine hours!


This is part of a sign on top of Mount Lemmon – it explains how a 1,000 foot change in elevation give you an environment similar to driving 300 miles north.  Amazing . . .

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We parked at the same spot near Summerhaven (the town at the top of Mount Lemmon) where we parked two years ago, but quickly lost the trail and had to bushwhack our way to the top – didn’t lose the remnants of the scratches on my knees for nearly two weeks.

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Rough life – the ski lift was running all day in case anyone wanted to ride to the top even though there wasn’t enough snow for skiing.  So this guy was mostly playing games on his computer . . .

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Wanted Blake to see the observation shack, out on a windswept rock overlooking the mountain forest.

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Looked very different – actually, the belt wrapped around it made it look like the shack was in danger of blowing apart in a stiff breeze.

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I love “what he saw . . . what I saw” pics . . .

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Same thing, part two – this time I was enthralled by a tree that appeared to be growing out of the rock . . .

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Lots of changes as we hiked – many areas were scarred by a fire about ten years ago, while others showed the progress after scattering pine seeds from the air to restore the forest.

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The north side of the mountain was different – and treacherous – especially when hiking laterally.


Best memento of the day came when we encountered four other hikers along the trail – two of them were Ohio natives.

Tomorrow I will take you to the most beautiful area I have encountered in Arizona that isn’t the Grand Canyon, and after that I should be caught up . . .

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