Arizona - home to the wild, dry, sunny desert, full of mountain ranges, cactuses (cacti?) rattlesnakes, coyotes, cowboys, and my snowbird parents. After running through the Minneapolis airport, I was able to meet up with my parents, and later sisters for the week. This post, I wanted to talk a little about the adventures I had, and things to do in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area.
For the first day my mom surprised me with horseback riding - the area is a huge spot for equestrians, and the desert is a beautiful place to slowly meander through while riding a horse. I hadn't been on one since middle school, but I've always been fascinated with these animals. They are so big, beautiful and intelligent. I had Big John, and he was a big fella who was thankfully patient with me as I yanked this way and that, learning the ropes (ah! that's where the saying's from!). One thing I can't imagine though, is how people back in the day could ride horses all day long, day after day - traveling across the country. We were only gone for two hours, and getting off I already had a cowboy gait!
Lots of beautiful wildlife in the desert - while riding we saw a pack of coyotes!
The other big activity for the week for us was hiking. The first hike my dad took us on was Black Mountain - and let me tell you this is not for the faint of heart (great first pick, dad). This mountain was aptly named - it is made of black shale rock, and seemed to have a vertical incline of 90 degrees. There were points in the climb where I, gasping for air, generously rasped out to my companions "go on with out me, I'll never make it!" But they wouldn't give up on me until we made it to the top. The views were worth it - 360 degrees of mountains and valleys all around us.
Of course ya gotta have good hiking boots - mine are Merrell, and were a great fit. Being high enough to prevent me from tripping and twisting my ankle, but the neoprene made them pretty light weight and easy to walk in.
The next hike was the LADY's hike! And much, much more enjoyable. This was Pinnacle Peak, which is an easy loping hike that goes up and down with lots of different opportunities for incredible views.
On our last day we hiked Tom's Thumb - which was probably my favorite. This hike was a little big longer, with steep and then level parts, so very do-able. But it's only once you get to the top that you see Tom's thumb!
Well - my dad keeps me young. He is more active and in shape than all my sisters and I combined, I swear. Outside of our house were some mountain biking trails that he took me on. I was a little nervous at first, and while the first half was a slow, gradual up up up and wasn't that exciting - I'll admit that going down was a blast! Hitting the dips, bumps and rocks fast on your bike gives you adrenaline and made me feel a little invincible. I definitely recommend trying out mountain biking!
And of course, a lot of time time was spent relaxing and laying out by the pool!
More stories and outfits from Arizona to come, and if you're visiting the area/have visited the area let us know what else you like to do there!