Writing Prompts

Business Matters and Another Hike

It’s been a couple of ho-hum days here with rain one day and cool, windy conditions the next.

Not much going on except to take care of business matters before next week when we leave to head back to Texas. Doing maintenance, calling to cancel my now worthless investment I made a few years ago, cleaning house and trip planning. We have New Mexico location booked, Alvarado location booked and beach location booked, but may be winging it for the second overnight on the way back to Texas. We can dry camp in a parking lot if we have to, no biggie.

Cactus budding in the garden on our site.

I sure hope we are here long enough to see our cactus flowering as well as others in the park. I’ll miss this place and all the sweet friends we’ve made here.

I’ve been looking at possibly buying an E-bike. Lectric Bike keeps having sales on their new trike and model 3.0 E-bike, but Dave would rather I wait until we get back to DFW before we seriously consider it. I’m still leaning towards the trike for stability but would rather see them live and try them out first if possible. I’d also like to take advantage of the sales going on because they are offering package deals on free accessories.

Right after I finished writing the intro to this post, Dave says “Want to take a walk?” This usually means around the resort. Not up the side of the mountain again, but off we went. Me unprepared, except for the proper footwear. We got this high before the trail became rather vague and very steep. We decided it was best to turn around.

Ugh, so close!! This is as close as I’ve been to the top of the ridge.
From here, the peak looks totally doable, but my legs had just about given out.

I was disappointed yet decided to err on the side of caution. No walking sticks for stability and balance, no water, no food. My knees were weak and my legs were shaky, and I knew the going down would be dicey on all those loose rocks. There is not much smooth ground up the side of the mountain. My Apple Watch showed the elevation to be over 2,000 feet we climbed by the time we got home. I thought I did pretty good, for just casually walking out the door, game for whatever.

From up here, you can see where all the land has been cleared for the new park models to go in.

Dave walked a little higher than me …again!

Part of me feels like a wuss, but the smart part knows I’m better off than twisting my knee or something more tragic. There is nothing to break a fall but rocks and cactus. The wildflowers were beautiful though!

Dave got me while I wasn’t looking! Ha, I’m texting pics to Julie. 🤣

You can see how high up we were, and to the right of me in the above photo, starts the hardest part of the trek to the top. I bet it would be a pretty waterfall if the rain came down that solid rock wash we were about to have to cross to continue to the top of the ridge. The steeper the terrain became, the more wary I did. So we started down at that point, me crab walking my way down until the ground leveled back out.

I’m really going to miss doing things like this!

One more pic from Dave’s phone and then look what he snagged for me at the bottom of the foothills! He found part of a geode!

It was already broken open either by nature or machinery.
Writing Prompts

Hiking Muggin’s Mountain

In the mouth of a nearby cave.

The cave pictured here is at a location near the mountain peak that was our destination, but the hike up to Muggin’s Mountain had several more, though none that big in the area we searched.

I wanted to go all the way to the highest point, but my knee was grouchy because of the cold front that came in last night I guess. To prevent accident and to keep me able to enjoy the rest of our time here this week, we decided at a certain point that we had done enough climbing for the day.

We wanted to hike this particular mountain because we pass it frequently and it looks like a crown from the highway. We just had to see it, had to find a way up there. So in our true fashion, we took off and explored on our own this morning, finally finding the correct hiking path that actually becomes a BLM park (7,100 acres worth) yet we were only interested in the crown-looking part. Had we looked up Muggin’s Mountain on the internet, like I did when we got home, we would have found exact driving directions. Where’s the fun in that? 🤣 We had so much more fun (and possibly did some trespassing) our way though! As a matter of fact, during part of our driving search, we were on some lands used by the military as a training ground for munitions. Signs warned that there was unexploded ordinance, yet we just didn’t stray from the path paved by Jeeps and/or ATVS that came before us. After regrouping and doubling back however, we found the correct way up there.
From other vantage points on nearby peaks, it kind of looks like a toad crouching. Use your own imagination as I take you through the photo journey of our hike.The first group of pictures is from the first set of hills we climbed before arriving at the BLM area.


The crown-type peak on the right was the destination.
Our view as we climb a steep hill.
The crown is over this range but we had to leave this are a drive around.
Over the edge is a sheer drop into this gorgeous valley. The cave is off to the left .
This is the cave I’m pictured in at the top of the post.
Beautiful views atop this peak though.
Here the rocks were all interesting, some looking just like petrified wood. I took a few shots as examples.
Enlarged, you can see the striations.
A different clump of it.
Smaller but better example.
I left all these alone, as there weren’t any small enough rocks to take back that really represent petrified wood. On BLM land, however, you can take as many rocks as you want.
Driving past fields of kale as we searched for the way to get up to Muggin’s Mt.
On top of a hill in the (possibly) off-limits area.
The other set of mountain ranges over there are what you cross through on your way to Yuma.
Finally arriving at the destination. Now to pick a path!

We parked here and started walking toward what looked like the easiest way up. We were wrong. After climbing up a hill, we took some pics and carefully made our way back down. That part might have aggravated my knee a bit, the shale and rocks were loose, gravelly, and hard to walk sideways on. In fact, Dave beefed it coming down, but was not too injured. It was a slow fall, but a rough enough landing that he remarked, “That’s gonna leave a mark.”

We could see our Jeep from our vantage point before the climb down.

Here, we decided to walk the path through the river bottom, taking in some beautiful sights, interesting rock formations that years of water and other elements have created.

One more from atop the hill first.
Dave posing for me as we explored part of the River bottom.
Just a cool pic of being at the lowest point.
Small caves are back up in there, but I’d had enough climbing for the day.
Embedded in the River bottom, such a cool formation. All the cliffs through here looked like this.
Another awesome example.
Headed back in the right direction, I wanted to go all the way, but my knee (and Dave) advised against it.
More caves in the cliffs.
A close-up of the trail and peak. Maybe we will finish the hike up next week.
Enlarged, I could swear I spotted mountain goats watching us. We definitely saw other hikers.
The one rock I took, I liked the striations.

Believe it or not, this rock was actually picked up in the first area we stopped, before we got to Muggin’s Mountain Wilderness.

I was going to use the gallery but figured each picture needed an explanation. Also, I don’t like the way my pictures come up in the editor. I wanted them in order. So, slow as the process is, I chose to display them like I did instead. I hope you enjoyed the trip as much as I did. I’ve already used some balm on my knees and taken a dose of Tylenol as a precaution. Still, I’m pretty sure I’ll be a little sore tomorrow! We did a good bit of walking and climbing but unfortunately not at a pace conducive to much fat burning. Darn my knees! Oh well, time to lay off the bread again I suppose. 😁

Writing Prompts

Picacho Peak State Park

We finally took that hike I’ve been dying to go on today!

We decided to do the short, moderate trail today, it’s called the Calloway Trail.

We were both wearing tennis shoes and only had a bottle of water each, but did ok.

It’s going to be difficult to explain exactly where we were on the mountain without a trail map, but I’ll share the few pics that would load today and the best selfie we’ve taken since we got here. I took some, Dave took some, but other than where we were, concentrate on the differences in the trail topography. Some places were smooth, some had built in steps, and others were rocky, slippery, and/or steep.

Not the peak, but a good climb nonetheless.
Dave posing near a palo verde tree.

At one point I pause to catch my breath and take a drink, so I took this pic of Dave and he took one of me.

Still on the easy part of the trail.

Actually, this was the first pic he took of me.

I must be allergic to the cottony stuff that comes off the cholla cactus or something because the whole hike, I dealt with my eyes and nose pouring. Thankfully, Dave had a folded paper towel in his pocket. Every time I walk around the resort, or walk the dogs, the same thing happens.

Still not the peak, that’s a different, more difficult hike.

The terrain was rocky or gravelly all the way, nothing to grab but rocks (or cactus) so you had to be very careful. Along the way we thought of everything we need for the next hike. Backpacks or Fanny packs, Kleenex, extra water, wear our hiking boots, and snacks so I don’t get shaky. I guess I was hungry when we started because I was ravenous when we got back!

King of the hill here. I think it’s a great pic of Dave.
Closer to to hill I took a picture of at the start.

Saguaro cactus dots the entire mountain and foothills, as well as palo verde, some kind of sage, and many varieties of cacti. They say this is the site of the most western conflict of the Civil War. Can you imagine having to fight the enemy while fighting these elements!

The end of the trail and the scenic overlook. Our RV site is down there somewhere!

It’s gorgeous up there, and I will have some work to do before I’m ready for the big trail that goes to the top of the peak. I’m probably going to be sore tomorrow just after today’s hike, but what great exercise it was! So far, my knee is not swollen, so that’s a plus!

There were so many pics in between, but they never would load, so I’ll have to post them later. Here is the state park pamphlet you get upon entrance. And, because I’m a vet with a partial disability, we got in for half price and I got my park pass card that will get me in to all the state parks around the US.

One of my favorite pics on the way back. I love the natural rock formations.

The trail leads up between the greenery there, then back down before leveling off again. While we were at the top, Dave took a really good selfie of us with saguaro as a backdrop.

Dave and I at the top of the trail.

Since there are mountains all around us, almost any shot we take around the resort has a mountain range in it. I want to see them all, but we will fit in what we can. I’d also like to visit a spot with a lake, there are many around, just none real close.

Coming back down I got a good shot featuring the mountain range across the freeway from us.

One Dave took somewhere along the trail. See the camping spots lower down the hill?

A cool rock formation I just had to get.

That’s a big rock! On the way out and back to the Jeep, I snapped this shot.

A great map showing where we are in relation to Tucson.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the hike along with us. I will have to increase my walks and get my legs stronger so I can do the three-mile hike. We have one more really warm day before the weather turns cold and rainy again. Wonder what we’ll do tomorrow?!

Stay tuned!

Writing Prompts

“Let’s Take a Walk”

“Let’s take a walk,” he said. I was all in! I’ve been begging him to join me in something, so off we went.

How did I know it would turn into a hike up the mountain, no path, no park, and no hiking boots!

I don’t want to get all sanctimonious on you guys, but did y’all climb a mountain today? Well, I made it halfway up before I freaked out a little about the coming down part. For someone with a bad knee, the going up is the easy part, it’s the coming down part that’s difficult.

Also, on this mountain there is nothing to hold onto or grab if you were to slip and fall. It’s covered in a variety of cacti, and scrub. It’s rocky, steep, and we weren’t on any pre-made path. We just took off up the hill and kept going. Dave went higher than me, but came to a difficult spot and decided not to risk it. I was rooting for him from my paralyzed position, I wouldn’t go up and couldn’t go down yet, not without his hand.

I asked him what would have happened if he had slipped, I wouldn’t have been able to help! Oh, I’d have gotten up there to him, but I don’t have a clue how we would have gotten down! A bit risky, but you can see from the pictures it was worth it for the view!

I wish I had a better camera, I’m sure I could have picked out our motor home from one of these pictures. I like the picture with the dead or dying giant saguaro, it adds color to the landscape. We also realized from our perch, that the mountains across the freeway would be a much more difficult climb! They are even taller than ours!

Time to shop for some backpacks, and some hiking boots! I was wearing cowboy boots and he had on tennis shoes!! But we did it, and I was out of breath and starving when we got back. Now it’s about 3:30, we’ve done nothing else, and it’s cooling down already. Clouds have moved in. It’s movie night at the clubhouse, I wonder if we’ll go? I’ll miss Survivor, but it would be worth it to have him join me again. ☺️

Enjoy the photos.

I sure wish I knew if the blue rock was turquoise or not, I’ll have to ask around because it’s everywhere out there!

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