Tuesday, November 28, 2006

One of the reasons...

I haven't been hiking for a long time. Been traveling and taking care of other stuff. Here's a picture of one of the things I had to take care of. Now that that is out of the way I can get back to hiking. After I drive this out to Canyon Lake and back, that is.

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Sunday, November 19, 2006

Another hike near FR80

There's a side road off of FR80 that looks like it doesn't go anywhere. I confirmed that today. I went down it a little ways and decided to hike to the top of a hill near there, to see what the view was like. I figured I would have a view of another hill, or something equally boring. The view was great, though. Click on the picture below to see all of the pictures.

The first picture shows the boring hill. The next nine are the view in various directions. There was other cool looking stuff, but the lighting wasn't good so I didn't include those pictures.

Next is what looks to me like fossilized wood. The next picture has what looks like more fossilized wood. Also, all the circular things look kind of like cross sections of sticks. I say "kind of" because they seem to have a radial pattern instead of rings. Maybe some plants have that, though. Hey, maybe there's an advantage to being ignorant. You won't know things that shoot down your theories. Make up things to explain the facts and charge ahead. Reminds me of something that's been in the news lately...

Anyway, back to the stick cross sections. Notice that there are also some circular depressions. If you look in the right place you will also see some circular bumps. Hmm. The next picture has more of the "cross sections".

Then there's a couple of pictures of some of my fingers. Oh, and they're holding a rock. The rock is mostly spherical, except for the parts that broke off. The center is chewy chocolate small crystalline quartz (I'm guessing) and it has an outer shell of something else (kind of like an M&M). The next picture shows lots of the "nodules" stuck toghether. There were also a lot of unbroken spheres laying around. Anyway, the point of all this is that I started to think that maybe the "cross sections" were actually these spheres imbedded in rock and not fossils. I'm going to go back out there some time and spend a couple of hours looking at rocks and see if I can figure it out.

The last picture is a stick that I was carrying back to the truck. Looks like there's a bark scorpion in it. That scared me. It's just the exoskeleton, though.

Saturday, November 18, 2006


No hike today. Instead, Suzanne, Lauren, and I drove up to Sedona. We got a late start and there wasn't anyplace to park by the time we got there. We did make a stop at the chappel, though, which is where I took these pictures.

The girls also found some Navajo jewelry they needed at the top of Oak Creek Canyon. They had some very pretty vases and pottery there. I'd like to get some, but I don't know where I'd put it. We've just about got more clutter than our house will hold.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

A hike near FR80 (close to Apache Lake)

I decided to try hiking in the middle of the day today. It was in the low 70's. There was a little too much sunshine for me, though. Click below to see all of the pictures.

The first picture shows a narrow canyon with a big rock wedged in the top. I wanted to hike down that canyon but it starts off with a big pouroff that I couldn't get past. Well, I could have gotten down to the bottom, but then there was another big pouroff just a little further downstream. Click here to see a video of the pouroff.

I hiked along the top of the canyon for a little ways. I stopped because it was about to get dangerous. I don't hike somewhere that if I fell and slid or rolled a little ways, I would fall off a cliff. It was getting steep along the side of the canyon. Click here to see a video of the cliff I could have fallen off of.

I seem to have trouble getting good pictures when the sun is so high. There are a couple of others on the web page but I don't like the way they turned out. There's also a picture of an Elmo baloon that I found tangled up in a cholla out there. That reminds me, I need to get a bunch of beer bottles and cans out of the back of my truck.

This was the first time I used my new backpack. For years I've used one of Kyle's old school backpacks. I didn't want anything fancy, and I kind of liked the stick figure break dancers that Kyle had drawn on it. They look like the petroglyphs in Hieroglyphic Canyon. But I was in a sporting goods store a couple of weeks ago and looked at backpacks. They had a stiffener in them that would keep them from rolling up when full of water bottles, gold ore, or whatever. They also are designed to keep your back from getting so hot. I decided I needed one but they were $40 to $90, which seems rediculous for a backpack. Well, yesterday I happened to be on Power road (long sad story) and decided to check out the backpacks at Big 5. They had a bunch on sale for half price. I got a fancy Nike backpack for $20. It has pockets and zippers and cubby holes all over the place. I'm going to loose stuff in there. It has stiff mesh on the part that's against your back so that air can circulate. It works, too. My back didn't get soaked like it usually does. Sometimes the old tried and true things work, but sometimes the fancy schmancy new stuff is good, too.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

I didn't plan to go for a hike today, but I was out near Canyon Lake and couldn't resist hiking up a very small mountain. I forgot my camera so I don't have any pictures. When I got back to where I parked, I noticed tire tracks going off the road. Going off the road near Canyon Lake is a very bad thing to do. What might knock your car out of alignment most other places will kill you there. I followed the tracks down into the ravine and found a lot of glass and smashed rocks. It looked fresh, less than a week old. I found a place nearby where another car had gone off, probably a few months ago. It burned. There were blobs of molten metal.

I decided to put an old picture here, to see if it can be displayed on the blog. It's a 360 panoramic view from the top of Lone Mountain.

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Monday, November 06, 2006

The pump motor

This is one of the reasons I haven't been hiking much lately. See that white stuff? Mineral deposits. They show where the water was leaking out. I took the motor off when I got home today and hurried over to the Shasta store. No charge for the repairs since I bought the motor just a month ago and was assured that there would be no leaks. The pump was leaking so much that the fake river in the back yard has water in it. I'm not going to put the pump back on tonight. Too muddy back there.

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Sunday, November 05, 2006

What I climbed yesterday.

Here's a couple of pictures of the small mountain that I climbed yesterday. These were taken from the "Weaver's Vista Viewpoint" parking lot. Seems like a repetitively redundant name to me, but that's what the sign says.
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Saturday, November 04, 2006

Between Canyon Lake and the Superstition Mountains

It's been a long time since I went for a hike. Just too many things to do this week, and the sun sets so early. This afternoon I was thinking about all the things still pending on my to-do list and decided that I needed to go for a hike. Last week I had pointed to a small mountain near Canyon Lake and told Lauren that I was going to climb it some day. Today was the day.

I wish I had a picture of it. I'll have to post one later. I didn't take a picture on the way there and it was too dark on the way home. The top was only .4 miles from where I parked, and slightly less than 700 feet higher. Since I've been a desk jockey all week, it was a challenge. The ground was very rocky and hard to walk on. I slipped and fell three times (not on a cactus, praise the Lord). My ankles are tired from the constant strain of keeping them from twisting. Gee, all that makes it sound like a pain. I had a blast. The views were fantastic. I'll do it again tomorrow if I'm not too sore.

Click here to see pictures from the hike. The first is of the Superstition Mountains. The next 4 are various views from near the top of the mountain I was climbing. The next three are views of Four Peaks. In the next one you can see the road to Canyon Lake. You can also see a dirt road that seems to be a service road for all the power lines through this area. Then there's a picture of Weaver's Needle, named after Pauline Weaver, who had to have been a tough guy with a name like that. Next is a stand of teddy bear cholla. That sounds so cute, but they're like Chucky. I was walking past them and thought I was being careful about where I put my feet when I felt something hit the back of my leg. The feeling included the sensation of spines sinking into my skin. Under high magnification you can see that the spines are covered with what look like fish scales. The scales are oriented so the spines go in easily but are difficult to pull out. I carry pliers in my backpack just for occassions such as this. I had to get them out and pull the cholla ball off without putting my backpack down, so it wouldn't get covered in cholla spines. I've put it down in situations like this before and it isn't fun when you put it back on. I got another one of those things stuck on the back of my left leg later but it didn't get into the flesh. I knocked it off with Kimberly's stick.

I put the last picture here. It's a small animal's femur.
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