LAZAROW WORLD HIKE-ABOUT
Southern Utah: A land blessed with an abundance of natural beauty. (Kodachrome Basin State Park, slick-rock cutoff extension trail.)
'WHAT IN THE WORLD IS HIKE-ABOUT?'
Hike-about is an adventure that commenced June 2010. After storing our household movables, ridding ourselves of a house but retaining our 'home' together, we set off with the purpose
of hiking in different parts of the world, not forgetting the home country, the USA. Our primary focus is hiking to mountain peaks but any challenging hike will do just fine. Extended stays
allow us to enjoy and experience living in various places amongst differing cultures. Hike-about has evolved into a way of life. It's also a process of discovery, both the world and ourselves.
We work and live 'on the road' but return to the city in which our grandchildren reside, every couple of months. This provides us the wonderful opportunity to be with them as well as a
child or two, even three and of course, friends.
By December 2016, the blog contained 800 hikes, each a set of pictures with stories and anecdotes from the trails. An index to the right allows the viewer to identify earlier experiences.
Finally, we are often asked about the journey's end.
Our reply, as accurate as we can state, is: "When we are either forced to cease through health issues or the enjoyment level no longer reaches our aspirations, we will hang up the boots."
Whereas we continue to update the blog after meaningful hikes/visuals, we only circulate notifications irregularly.
Tuesday, January 16, 2018
'The Slab', Angels Landing, Zion National Park, Utah. Destination is the high point beyond the jutting corner.
Editor in the early stage after reaching Scout Landing. Spectators below 'cheering' her on.
Angels Landing is one of our favorite challenges. We completed the hike for the tenth time, up and return on the way to somewhere else. We are, in fact, returning to Zion but as we had to pass through the park, we thought: 'Why not?' In fact, that sounds defensive but it has become something we try do annually, that is, a visit to Zion and particularly, the Angel. We have come across a few places over the years which have a special feeling to them, it could even be spiritual—Zion is one of those locations. Its name seems appropriate, too. Unfortunately, we've not been in Utah for two, perhaps three years, which is shame in of itself. In our opinion, the southern part of the state is unique although in somewhat contradictory fashion, its neighbors, Arizona, Nevada and even California share similar landscapes, at times. (Of course, nature does not concern itself with artificial, political boundaries.) While we may appear to get carried away at times, this land is spectacular. The people are very nice, too.
(Kindly read the paragraphs at the end as we pay tribute to Barry Jahn.)
The highest point on the Angel, an outcrop of rock.
On the way up, the editor approaches the rock bridge. The Virgin River and park road wind and wend below.
Then she takes the gap. The rock bridge can be seen linking the sections of slabs.
Back at ground level, nature has its own way of making 'temporary death' attractive.
Later that day, we make our way to Bryce Canyon. The photograph appeared in the mind long before it made the camera.
A new position that provided some stunning views down the canyon and a little flow of adrenaline.
Contemplating our return to Scouts Landing and then back to ground, from a position well below the top. The view is stunning, we would offer.
But first, we tried a new position which provides a vertical view down to the canyon floor from the right side. A spectacular position but it was a little 'nippy'.
With a square yard platform, it provides one of the nicest vertical views to the canyon floor. It's not at the
top of the Angel, although high up.
We have been most fortunate over the years to have met wonderful people on the trails. We’ve always maintained that an advantage of living on the road is the opportunity to come across people from all walks (trails) of life. From time-to-time, we mention them by name but I’m afraid, not often enough. One gentleman in point is Barry Jahn of Oregon. We met him on a rather long day hike (Tunnel Falls) that culminated at a terrific waterfall in his home state. The reason we mention Barry is because recently he put out a highly complimentary piece about Jenni and me. Unfortunately, our vanity allows us to be flattered and this piece hit all the right ‘buttons’. What’s worth mentioning is that Barry is a stronger hiker than ourselves. Back to the meeting in Oregon, the state of many, many trees.
We had returned recently from Europe (2013) and were making our way to San Diego by car. Before the trip to Europe, we could not find a place to park our vehicle in San Diego. Instead, we decided to leave it at the home of our son, Gavin who lives in Seattle. The trip is only about 1,100 miles. Jen wanted to hike in the three west coast states and I agreed, not wanting to be difficult. It took us about 5 weeks to reach our destination—we don’t have the fastest of cars.
Anyway, on this hike, we came across Barry and a friend as we returned from the waterfall, the hike ending. We began chatting and he mentioned he would be hiking during the summer in Austria. He even listed the hikes he would be undertaking. A few of them we had completed only weeks before. Quite a coincidence. We spoke a little about our lifestyle and we related, probably boasting a bit, the number of hikes we had tallied at that stage. A couple of minutes after taking leave of Barry, I decided I needed to revisit the waterfall and enjoy it further. I did just that.
Of course I passed Barry who was still sitting in the shade talking. I never questioned him as to this long period of inactivity—that’s my little barb. In his brand of humor which I’ve come to enjoy so much, he quipped as I passed, “Say Jeffrey, since you visited the endpoint again, are you going to count this as a double hike?” Of course, I didn’t have a comeback other than laugh loudly and continue to smile each time I think of the incident. (Scroll down, please.)
Thanks, Barry (and Ron, Jonna and many others.)
Jenni and Jeffrey
Three days earlier in the Mojave Desert, California.
And off to the fabulous Bryce Canyon.
Barry Jahn has me 'cracking up', a rather deft photographer (Jenni) captures a wonderful moment-(Photo stamp - Monday, July 15, 2013 3:42 PM)
Thursday, January 11, 2018
34.03, 34.04, 34.05: Just when we thought it could not get any better...it got stunning. A few highlights from latter hikes.
As the title understates, each day we seek exciting, interesting, meaningful and always extraordinary scenes within the ambit of physical effort. Over time, we have also learned that a person never knows what to expect, often allowing for elements of surprise to appear. Whether it's an animal, bird or typical natural scene, we've found and have oft stated, 'No scene repeats itself'. Some have made far-reaching statements such as, "When you've seen one mountain, you've seen them all". While we might offer an argument against that rather bold statement, perhaps it's more productive to concede that many objects remain stationary and appear not to differ from one day to another. However, that ignores the dynamics of the season, sun, moon, clouds and various other elements, not forgetting the subjectivity of a person's mood. Frequently, perspective differs depending on state of mind.
(Partly lifted from our book..."A Life Experience As No Other..."
Once again, we've displayed a mere handful of photographs from hikes which brought physical challenges, and cast great beauty on the eye and soul.
Shadows and spotlights at Kelso Dunes, a favorite. I like the picture, too.
The California 'dude' (heaven forbid) attempts part of the 700 feet climb on soft sand at Kelso Dunes.
Reaching the pinnacle on virgin sand.
In dry San Diego County, a peek at a fairly lush spot below Bernardo peak.
Attempting to break the 'sand barrier'; it's never been done before. Trying to outpace the guy behind and confident he'll win.
Amboy Crater, a view from the rim.
A reason we waited for sunset at Kelso.
Inside the far rim of Amboy, looking out.
On Bernardo Mountain a conversation overheard, "He's not dangerous, more of a nuisance really."
Heading into the abyss and hardly worried; not exactly an abyss either.
The editor walks the line, a little slippery following rain. (Rain in Southern California...what's that?)
Running the dunes; never too late to be a kid.
How about some color in the Mojave desert? The colors splayed in a way we've never seen before, and maybe,
we found the end of the rainbow.
Jenni and Jeffrey
Monday, January 8, 2018
34.01: Introduction to San Diego County-Cleveland Forest, Cuyamaca, Laguna Mountain, Palomar Mountain, Elfin Forest, Bernardo Mountain and more.
We have been moving around the greater San Diego, exploring the challenges and beauty of this region, many places never having been experienced before. As we head further north, thinking what our friend and gentleman, Ron Allegretto from Vancouver said recently about our fear of cold weather, and therefore, in a bold move, we are heading for some snow. Not too much though but we think we have 'matured' and should be able to handle weather in the 30's and 40's. Jenni has her hot water bottle and I, of course, have Jenni, in a manner of writing. We are trying to place an order for a light general snowing, with some heavy falls limited to the peaks only. We would also like the sun to shine brightly in order to warm the air but not too hot that it causes snow to melt. We think that's about it and trust it's not an unreasonable request. After all, one should not be too picky.
The pictures below form a summary of what we've witnessed recently. We selected 1 to 3 pictures from each hike. We will follow with regular blogs of fuller content over the next couple of weeks. Please visit the blog whenever the urge arises or you wish to have a target at which to throw a dart.
Rancho Bernardo sanctuary.
A hike up to the stars—to see the Palomar Observatory.
An idyllic scene from Stonewall Peak, Cuyamaca. Across the way is Laguna Mountain, the scene of the following
Peak view of Lake Hodges.
Winter in Cleveland Forest. (West Coast).
A privilege to visit the southern part of Cleveland Forest for two hikes. A staggering array of scenes and scenery. Salton Sea in background.
Overlooking Anza Borego Desert—you had to be there.
Sunset at Solana Beach.
Jen welcomes new arrivals on Stonewall Peak (a bit disappointed to find steps and a railing).
More desert—the blue mountain is exactly as the eye viewed it, color-wise.
We enjoyed an awful lot of rock climbing over the last few days.
Bernardo Mountain Peak reveals Lake Hodges' marsh below.
"I've got you covered is the corny line, I suppose". Scroll down to previous blog for additional Osprey images.
Olivenhain Lake in Elfin Forest
Give a dog a bone or Frisbee.
The editor waits at Cuyamaca State Park.
Jenni and Jeffrey
Sunday, January 7, 2018
34.02 Birds in Autumn while walking up and over Mount Woodson from Poway Lake and down the other side to arrive at Highway 67.
A personal interest in birds and animal life in the wilds has been growing for a number of years. I can remember as a teenager that ornithology was considered by macho teenagers as something of a wimpish interest. These days it is more and more fascinating and creates another reason to be based in the outdoors as often as possible. I think there are at least two pursuits of many, in which a person who is feeling down in the dumps should consider. The first is looking at the world through a young child's eyes. The second is to gather around a marsh or body of water or wherever birds congregate, preferably in the early hours of the morning. Then listen to the chirping and observe their general busy manner. They appear so excited to be enjoying the dawn of another day and sharing it together. It's infectious. And if a simple bird is happy to be alive, how much more should we be.
The editor might say this preamble is a justification for displaying more than usual number of birds on the blog recently. She may well be correct.
And I thought an Osprey was a military helicopter/plane. (An unusually bleak day for San Diego).
Dull day brings out the coloring. (Still autumn in winter...huh?)
"You keep pointing that thing at me and I'll change my diet from fish to meat."
Never lose sight of the mountains.
A setting of silver and gold.
Something caught the eye; hopefully, not the editor.
The bears in San Diego have hibernated but as yet, not the leaves. (How do we know this? Look at the leaves. And, we haven't come across any bears. Friends, this is not complicated stuff.)
We've heard about a 'fly-by night' so we suppose this is a fly-by day.
Water boulders or the 'bold and beautiful'.
Last one. Took an awful lot of patience so please indulge us.
Jenni and Jeffrey
We call this flying under the radar with pelicans. (Jenni has had enough of "my birds". She has resorted to referring to them as my ducks. I'm getting a message...I think. But I still love my ducks...er pelicans.)
I ask you, "Can you see any bears?"
"Let's unite and fly the friendly skies." One can see the similarity with a plane...at least, I do.
On a sunny day, we meet again. This time it's letting passing seagulls know it's not amused with their
presence in its space.