Two snaps for urban sprawl!! Heyyyyy!!
The one exception? Hiking. There are lots of amazing desert hiking trails in and around the Phoenix area. Camelback Mountain is one of the more famous ones rising 1300 feet (for a total elevation of 2700) above the most fancy part of the city. I’ve suggested it as a fun hike for old and young to help pass the time between stops to strip malls or luxury med spas. The only catch? In spite of living here for nearly 7 years I’ve never hiked it myself. Oops. This weekend I decided that streak needed to end.
One of my never published new years resolutions was to break out of my normal routine and stick myself out there a bit more. That goal is of course terrible as it is neither measurable or necessarily accountable, but I’m trying my best to make it a reality.
None of the pictures I took were as good as ones I could steal off the internet!
Photo credit: The Internet
So, after dropping off my son, I hopped on the motorcycle and drove to where the fancy people lived (Scottsdale / Paradise Valley) to start on my hike. A storm front had blew in which meant that it was cloudy, 5 degrees cooler than normal, and a bit breezy. (Hopefully the sarcasm comes through on that.) It was perfect hiking weather!
I decided to take the “easy but long” trail to the top. At just under 2 miles to the top, it was obviously a man who tagged it with the “long” moniker. But, what it lacks in length it makes up for in variety and scenery (
Sand and and trees and stucco as far as the eye can see
I ran when I could and scrambled around people as politely as I thought I could get away with and 40 minutes later I was a the top. With 360 degree views of the city, it was really a sight to be seen. The “mountain” itself is visible from all parts of the valley and thus even in spite of the clouds and haze you could see for miles and miles in either direction.
After a few obligatory social media style selfies, I started on the scamper down. Like on the way up, I tried to go essentially as fast as I could
Teeth and Sweat: A memoir by Adam
Before I knew it, I was down. 75 minutes / 4 miles / 1300ish feet of elevation. The shocking thing? My busted up knee felt AMAZING. As in, better than it had all week. So, I’m not sure if the stress I put it under knocked it back into alignment or if maybe my pain is some sort of psychosomatic thing. Either way, I’ll take it as a win. Of course, since I'm now obviously an expert mountain climber and trail runner, I'll go ahead and start on my EPIC trail beard.
Overall, I really really liked hiking this mountain. It was a busy trial, but I can see why. There were great views and enough of a technical challenge to keep things interesting both up and down. Score one for the sticking it out there goal.