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.