Well that got your attention didn’t it? When I, Ingrid and Nancy went hiking it was a marvelous day spent with friends. I shall confess that they are far far more adept at hiking than I am, then again look what they have to work with! Arizona on it’s worst day is nothing compared to spots in the Midwest and eastern seaboard where when it gets cold and snowy it goes hard!
While I’ve been on the Apache Trail before (see here) I’ve never explored parts of the Tonto National forest where we went hiking. After we tracked the wild horses down it was off to explore more of the Salt River. The others scrambled down a hill to get to the riverbed, I chose a paved path that led closer to it. Told you I wasn’t that good of a hiker but I’m working on improving that.
It was really fascinating to be surrounded by mountains with cacti growing on them while standing in a river bed with those beautiful tumbled rocks. I guess this is just part and parcel of what the high desert is like.
Our next stop was Saguaro Lake; a large lake surrounded by mountains speckled with cacti along with it’s own marina and docked boats. There was even a river boat passing through on the lake with tourists being told to look to the left for such and such view. Who knew!
It was suggested we go for a little hike around the edge of the lake. I didn’t last as long as they did as I came down a bit awkward while scrambling over the rocks and had to sit and wait for them to return. There was much ice on an ankle that evening but I survived to hike again the following day. Frankly, just sitting there watching the world and two paddle boarders go by was so tranquil.
When the others came back we sat down on my rock to take the prerequisite selfie picture of our feet over the scenery. Well, we gave it our best shot anyway. Those rocks were uneven so it was best to have one foot down for stability and the other up for the photo.
Heading back to our vehicle Ingrid surprised us with a picnic lunch she made for all of us. A picnic lunch by the side of a lake on a sunny day in February? What more could one ask for. Grilled chicken breast with potato salad and chips along with tortillas, rolls, soda pop, lots of water (very necessary in the desert) and wine. We aren’t teetotalers yanno!
Everything was tasty and wonderful until we began to notice the extra company. There were birds surrounding us waiting for handouts that tried to get close to see what they could grab. They kept a reasonably safe distance. And then there were the squirrels.
They were deadly ninja assassins hell bent on hijacking our good eats. One of our crew (not naming names but she knows who she is) was more “anxious” about the squirrels than the others but when one of the bushy tailed varmints came within two feet of me, glaring at me with his hungry beady eyes while I had my chicken wrap sandwich in hand, it was just too much!
After some shouting, flailing of arms and stomping of feet they kept their distance and we finished our lunch in peace. Have you ever had your meal stolen or threatened with theft by wildlife before? Don’t let the cuteness fool you! Never let your guard down! Your lunch will be gone before you know it! You’ve been warned!
It was time to pack it up and pack it in and head off down the trail to our respective abodes. It was great transitioning from blogging friends to in person friends; finally getting together and going hiking. It’s something I highly recommend everyone should do. If hiking isn’t your thing then at least be open to meeting new people. It could be the start of a great friendship or at least some interesting tales to tell later.
The last photo is really cute. We always have food to share with the critters and make peace with them.
They were trying to distract us! I like sharing from a distance.
Oh I really hate squirrels. I completely agree with your analogy! But it looks like fun besides the demon rats.
It was fun and their antics were adorable but nawwww! Keep your wildlife distance thank you.
Sounds like a fabulous good time, despite the squirrels. Such beauty scenery!
Thanks it was and the scenery is wonderful.
Fun fun day and guess I was the only one who didn’t mind the squirrel on the table. They were entertaining. I’ll turn you into a hiker yet!
Yes! You were the only one who wanted to play Snow White and commune with the animals! I think I might have a touch of the hikers itch now 😉
I have some great hikes with tons of photo-ops to share with you. All I need is your physical presence in Phoenix 🤣
You have no idea how much I’d love to be able to do that!
Those dang squirrels were to close for comfort!!! That one almost jumped in my lap… Aaaaa!
A fun day and so glad we could make this happen! Ingrid ad I have been out since and will be going again soon.
Spring is coming!
Yeah that one that was staring me down had me fearing for my safety! So jealous of you two being able to hike. Weather might be changing here… from cold and wet to cool and wet LOL
These images are so beautiful! I want to jump right in!
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oh my gosh these pictures are beautiful. I looked up to see how far Tonto National Forest is from me and it’s not far at all. I will defiantly visit there!
If you really really want to know the ins and outs of Tonto NF then check out Ingrid’s blog at Livelaughrv.net and she has maps and everything! You will enjoy it… but take lots of water 🙂
Thank you 🙂
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I love hiking with new friends! Such a peaceful way to get to know one another. And if you hiked at all, even half a mile, I’d still consider you a hiker. Half a mile is outdoors is better than no mile at all! Cheers.
Thank you and I agree with you, even a little bit of hiking in the great outdoors is better than not hiking at all 🙂
Fun read and great images. Thank you!
Sometimes I’m afraid those squirrels have rabies or something! Great pictures!
Was kinda thinking the same thing.
I enjoyed reading your post!