Friday, January 23, 2009

Hiking the Desert

Today the WINs took a break from all the shopping in Quartzsite and went for a hike. When Chuck organizes a hike, you can be sure it will be an adventure. He doesn't believe in following trails and blazes his own. He's a true 'Road Less Traveled' type.

As we were leaving home, Ron and I were surprised to hear that the drive in was for high-clearance vehicles. Somehow we missed that. But it was too late to get a ride since they were pulling out, so off we went in the Saturn. Luckily the high-clearance turned out to be optional. Hey! We drove through Monument Valley! This was nothing.

Here we are getting last minute instructions at the trailhead. (Or it would have been the trailhead if there had been a trail.) There were 30 of us!

My camera really hates cloudy days, so I apologize in advance for these pictures. They really don't show how lovely it was. We even had a few drops of rain!

We started out winding our way up, around, and through the hilly landscape.

There was one section that was pretty scary. I'm not much of a rock climber.

The view from the top was gorgeous - lots of green in the desert this year. Here we are blocking the view.

When we came down the other side, we stopped at the bottom to regroup. Ron thought to count the hikers and came up with only 25. Oh no, that's two more than the 10% you're allowed to lose on a hike!

Don't worry the rest showed up soon and we continued on our way.

I was going to say, "Watch out for the jumping cholla, guys," but I think I'm the only one who was clumsy enough to get stuck today.

Finally we stopped for lunch at this unstable-looking spot. Chuck had informed us that the hike was about 4 1/2 miles and, at this point, I thought we must be almost back to the cars. However the darn GPS said we had only gone just over two miles. Geez. I guess all that climbing and descending is deceiving.

Thankfully the rest of the hike was pretty flat and we all made it back without too much whining from me.


  1. You sure are brave. I try to avoid following Chuck anywhere.

  2. Wow! Chuck must be part mountain goat. I hope those rocks weren't as steep as they looked in the photo.

    While you are risking life and limb, we are playing it safe. The snow in our Blog melted and then we received another inch and a half of fresh white stuff. After a couple of springlike days that snow is now gone. We are back to cold weather this week. Have fun but be careful!