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Tag: Friday Fitness Hike (page 25 of 31)

Friday Fitness Hike

Linda, Janet, Bob, Bill, and I met at the Horse Staging Area (in McDowell Mountain Park) for Friday’s hike.  We hiked a 7.25 mile loop.

The sun had not quite risen yet when I arrived.  Linda took this photo of me taking some predawn photos using my tripod.

2013-08-16-From_Linda-015This is one of the photos I got:

2013-08-16-DSC05005-mediumIt’s amazing how much the sky can change in just a few minutes…

2013-08-16-DSC05083-mediumLinda’s photo of the sky just before sunrise:



A view of Red Mountain, just after sunrise:

2013-08-16-DSC05128-mediumAnother pre-hike photo taken just after sunrise:



I had seen this area from the Technical Loop before, but we found a road that brought us closer.

2013-08-16-DSC05143-mediumI like this photo from Linda…

2013-08-16-From_Linda-020Janet noticed the remains of a dead saguaro with an interesting looking protrusion at the top.  I think this might be from one of the arms when it was alive.

2013-08-16-DSC05163-mediumLinda took a photo of it too…

2013-08-16-From_Linda-021A dead tree in Stoneman Wash:


We noticed some very green and healthy looking trees in Stoneman Wash, but none of us knew what they were.  Below, Bill, Janet, Linda, and Bob pose in front of one of them.


Two more views of Stoneman Wash…

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Senna flowers on the Pemberton Trail:


Friday Fitness Hike


This week’s hike started at the Wagner Trailhead, though we never actually got around to hiking the Wagner Trail.  Even so, we hiked 8.7 miles.

I got this photo of the sunrise before the hike started.  Part of the Wagner Trail is visible in this photo.


Another pre-hike photo; A good view of Red Mountain off in the distance with some interesting foliage in the foreground.


We hiked the Tortoise Trail to the Pemberton and then hiked Pemberton to Stoneman Wash.  We hiked up the wash, stopping to take photos at this rusted convertible.


From left to right are Kevin, Bob, Amy, Janet, and Teresa.


Bob took this photo of me while I was photographing the car.


A large palo verde tree in Stoneman Wash:

2013-08-09-DSC04559-mediumWe hiked up one of the feeder washes for Stoneman Wash.  It eventually lead us back to the Pemberton, somewhat south of the Bluff Trail.

We saw this rattlesnake along the way.  Ranger Amy has confirmed that it’s a Mohave rattlesnake.  We saw one on last week’s hike too.

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I was suprised to see a blooming barrel cactus in the area.

2013-08-09-DSC04652-medium Ranger Amy examines the skull of a small animal.


A view from the Pemberton Trail.  There is a small bench just below and left of the Palo Verde on the hill.  Just below and beyond the tree and bench lies the Bluff Trail.  The yellow sign visible in this photo warns of a sharp turn on the Pemberton Trail.


Teresa and Bob hike down the Bluff Trail.


A view of Weaver’s Needle and the Flatiron far off in the distance:


We came across a number of healthy looking ocotillos while hiking back on the Bluff Trail.


Ranger Amy spotted this horseshoe on a granite boulder.

2013-08-09-DSC04727-medium A view of the nine o’clock fountain with Red Mountain behind it.


Friday Fitness Hike

Janet, Linda, Bob, and I hiked out on the Pemberton from the Trailhead Staging Area today.  We passed the site of the ranch homestead until we found a promising looking wash heading west.  We hiked the wash, seeing three snakes along the way.  I only got photos of two of these snakes.  We returned via the Tonto Tank Trail.  Total distance was 7.67 miles.

I took this photo from the road leading into the parking area while before the hike.


A photo of the sunrise, also before the hike:


A large multi-armed saguaro in Stoneman Wash:


A view from the Pemberton, near Stoneman Wash:


This is the wash that we hiked after leaving the Pemberton.  It meandered both west and north, though there were several forks we could have taken along the way which would have probably lead us to the Pemberton again.


Linda takes a photo of…2013-08-02-DSC04217-medium

…me, Janet, and Bob:



Three photos of the first snake we encountered.  I believe it’s a Western Diamondback rattlesnake.

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Linda took this photo of me photographing the snake:


Bob, Linda, and Janet wait for the snake to move off.


This is the second rattlesnake that we saw.  Linda and Alan’s research suggests that it’s a Mohave rattlesnake.  I saw one other snake, but it was not a rattlesnake; I don’t know what it was aside from being small and quick.


A view of Four Peaks from the Tonto Tank Trail:


Friday Fitness Hike

Friday’s hike met at the Tom’s Thumb Trailhead, where we hiked the Marcus Landslide Trail.  The hike started off rainy, but cleared after perhaps twenty minutes or so.

Amy composed this group photo, which I shot from my tripod.  From left to right are Linda, Kevin, Amy, Janet, Teresa, Marilyn, Mary, and Jerry.



A bird’s nest in a chain fruit cholla, with Sven Slab in the background:


Linda sent me this photo of me photographing the nest.



More chain fruit cholla:


Sven Towers III, and II.  (Seven Tower I is only partially visible at the far right in this photo.)



A spider web among some barrel cacti:


Linda took this photo of the web from above:



We saw a mule deer, but the wide angle lens that I was using didn’t get me very close:


Marilyn got this photo of the deer with her camera.



The Granite Ballroom with the Thumbnail Pinnacle off in the distance.

2013-07-26-DSC04026-mediumBroken mushroom rocks:



We spent nearly all of the hike in Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve.  Some of us did, however, take a few steps into McDowell Mountain Park.  Here, Amy and Teresa pose by a sign on the Boulder Trail.

2013-07-26-DSC04050-mediumThe trail leads up a hill formed from the slide mass:

2013-07-26-DSC04053-medium Linda took this photo of me at around that point.


The trail goes past a lichen covered slab of granite:

2013-07-26-DSC04056-mediumAmy makes her way up the slide mass.  Rock Knob is in the background at the right.


We stopped at the interpretive viewpoint which shows the locations of various landmarks including Four Peaks and Weaver’s Needle.  I took this photo from that view area.

2013-07-26-DSC04077-medium Taking a break near the view point…


Submarine Rock:

2013-07-26-DSC04093-mediumWe returned via the Caballo Trail.  Along that trail is an old feeding trough…


There’s also an old water tank nearby.  Tom’s Thumb can be seen just left of the water tank.


On the drive out, after the hike was over, Teresa took this photo of caballos crossing the road.







Friday Fitness Hike

Friday’s hike started at the horse staging area near the entrance to the park.  I took this photo of the sunrise while we waited for everyone to arrive.


We walked across the road to the competitive track parking area and started by hiking part of the Technical Loop.  We branched off onto the Long Loop and then hiked up to Pemberton via Stoneman Wash.  We went through the Trailhead Staging Area on our way to the Scenic Trail.  After about a mile on the Scenic Trail, we turned right onto the trail taking us back to the Horse Staging Area.

Note: I do not recommend hiking the loops in the competitive track area.  They are one way tracks and mountain bikes take them pretty fast.  I warned everyone on the hike to listen for bikes and to be prepared to step off the trail quickly.


A view from early on the Technical Loop:


A view of Red Mountain in the distance.


One of the steep downhill sections on the Technical Loop.  It appeared in pretty good shape.  It often has a lot of loose rock on it.

2013-07-19-DSC03566-medium On our way to the tunnel going under the Sport Loop.


The tunnel…


Another view of Red Mountain.



Linda took this photo of me taking a picture.

2013-07-19-From_Linda-002-mediumWe had some cool clouds on Friday.

2013-07-19-DSC03652-medium Sarge leads the way, followed by Bob, Janet, Teresa, Marilyn, and Linda.


Chain Fruit Cholla on the Long Loop.


We saw this horny toad near the end of our hike on the Scenic Trail.


Horny Toad

We saw this little critter on our hike today.  The end of my lens was six to eight inches away from him when I got this shot.  Being a 24mm lens, however, I still needed to crop away a lot of the image to get this close-up.


Friday Fitness Hike

Friday’s hike was 6.25 miles, starting from the Trailhead Staging Area.  We hiked out on the Pemberton Trail and then explored some of the washes near the former site of the Pemberton Ranch homestead.  We returned via Stoneman Wash and Pemberton.

Linda showed up with a new pair of gaiters.  We needed our gaiters today – they kept stuff out of our shoes as we hiked though sandy and vegetated washes.

2013-07-12-DSC02379-mediumTwo views of one of the washes we explored:

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A photo of Amy as she was…



…taking this photo of us:


The small canyons we hiked started out fairly open, but gradually narrowed with lots of twists and turns.  We encountered several forks along the way too.  If you choose incorrectly, you end up in a box canyon.  Today, however, we guessed at the right route; some of our past explorations of this area required us to retrace our steps.2013-07-12-DSC02442-medium

Bob and Sarge pose beneath an undercut section of wall:


Linda and Amy hike past a steep wall.


Amy tells us about this Verdin nest:


As noted earlier, our way narrowed down.  At this point, we had to hike single file.

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Taking a water break…




More views on our way back to the Pemberton:

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We came across this rusted piece of metal.  None of us could figure out to what it might have once been attached.

2013-07-12-DSC02631-medium A short while later, Amy found this spoon in the wash:


We followed our wash across the Pemberton on its way to feeding into Stoneman Wash. Bob stopped to give Sarge some more water.  I used the time to hike to the top of a small hill to see if we were already in Stoneman wash or if we still had further to go.  (We still had a ways to go.)  While atop the hill, I took this picture of the group with the McDowells in the background:


While still on the hill, I turned around and took this photo looking across Stoneman Wash towards Four Peaks.


It was starting to get warm as we hiked up Stoneman Wash and Sarge was panting a lot. Bob stopped to give Sarge some more water.



Friday Fitness Hike

Friday’s hike started at the Wagner Trailhead.  Bob, Teresa, Linda, Janet, and I hiked 7.25 miles.  The highlight of the hike was the wash paralleling the Bluff Trail.  Most of the photos below are from that area.

The morning was cloudy, which is kind of unusual for Arizona, though not too unusual for hikes in July and August.  We heard thunder off in the distance and were able to see rain in the distance too.  Occasional gaps in the clouds allowed the sun to light up mountains in the distance.


This is a view of the wash, just after leaving the Granite Trail.  We climb the boulders near the left edge of the photo in order to continue on up the wash.


Teresa and Linda make their way up the rocky part of the wash.


Teresa found this antler in the wash.


Anyone know what kind of plant this is?


We saw many holes as we hiked up the wash.  This one was quite large, but shallow.  We were able to easily see the bottom of the hole.  We wondered what kind of animal made this hole.


Spooky looking tree branches:


Here’s a spider hole.  But what kind of spider lives here?


Part of a burnt tree…


Teresa and Bob hike through another rocky section of the wash.


Rain showers in the distance…


Teresa, Janet, Bob, and Linda at the top of the Bluff Trail.  Janet, Bob, and Linda are wearing colorful gaiters purchased from Dirty Girl Gaiters.


Another view of rain showers from the Bluff Trail:


Another view of the Bluff Trail, with Four Peaks just visible behind some rain showers.


Friday Fitness Hike

We hiked the Scenic Trail during last Friday’s Fitness Hike.  We had a fairly large group for a hike in June.  Often, it ends up just being the regulars who show up for hikes during the summer months.

I didn’t take many pictures.  The desert is very brown right now; plus I have more than a few photos of this area.  See this post from several months ago for other Scenic Trail photos.

Sarge greets Heather as Bob looks on:


Sarge waits for water at the top of the hill on the Scenic Trail.



From left to right are Heather, Teresa, Mary, Janet, Mary, Marilyn, Linda, and Bob, with Sarge in front.



Bonus photo!  This is Mary’s husband, Clayton, riding the Pemberton Trail on Sunday:


Friday Fitness Hike

Today’s hike started at the Wagner Trailhead.  We hiked the Wagner Trail, turned right onto the Granite Trail and hiked past Stoneman Wash, stopping when we got to another wash which feeds into Stoneman Wash.  We hiked a short ways up the wash where Amy and I took the group photo shown below.  From there, the group split up with Amy leading Doug and Mary back to the Trailhead via the Bluff Trail.

Bob, Teresa, Janet, Marilyn, and I hiked continued up over the rocks and followed the wash up to the Pemberton Trail.  We turned left on Pemberton and returned via the Bluff Trail.

From left to right (and back to front) in the photo below are Kevin, Amy, Mary, Teresa, Janet, Marilyn, Doug, and Bob.  I took one exposure.  Amy took another.  I combined them in post processing so we could all be in the photo together.

2013-06-14-DSC03250-mediumThis photo was taken from the wash after the group split up.  (I didn’t take many photos today. I still have a lot of photos from the Moab area to process.)



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