LAZAROW WORLD HIKE-ABOUT
Argentina: Iguazu Falls after heavy rain.
'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 enable 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 2018, the blog contained over 1,000 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 regularly, we no longer circulate email notifications each time, VIP's excepted and special occasions.
Thursday, January 31, 2019
End of line: In the early stages, one of us makes a wrong turn but nevertheless, enjoys the magnificence of the region.
A tough hike for a girl not yet recovered from illness.
Should we be appointed travel advertisers for Sedona's hiking club, we might select this hike as an example of a solid challenge with incredible beauty viewable throughout the hike. At no stage on the trail is there anything but great visible offerings—truly remarkable. It's over 2,000 feet in elevation gain but we would argue the vertical gain is greater or all our previous hikes were overstated. Unlikely. Nearly seven years ago, we undertook the hike and a couple of times before then, too. Although Jen remembered most parts of it and in detail too, my memory proved disappointing. My new attitude to compensate for memory deficiency is to follow the designer's trail and let the path take me to the top...well, 'take' me might be the incorrect verb.
It's a little sobering and might we add, humbling, although we had a good excuse, that I don't believe we required the same level of effort some seven years before as we did today. Hopefully, this tough bout of 'flu is the culprit rather than a dilemma we call...do we need to be specific?
On the way up, at about the half-way stage, we passed a young couple (perhaps they were also ill). At the peak, we saw them again as we ate breakfast, at lunch time. While we took in the sights, the couple departed ahead of us. Upon arriving back at the car, we decided to pass the local 'Safeway' supermarket. As we placed our purchases alongside the cash register, the couple seen on Bear Mountain were paying for their goods ahead of us. An incredible coincidence that occurs relatively frequently.
Another couple on the summit were engaged in loud conversation, discussing 14,000-'ders'. It did not take a genius to ask them if they were from Colorado, the home of some fifty-odd peaks of that altitude.
Thus far, the mountain trails have been very quiet but the feature hikes such as Devil's Bridge are busy.
Better to absorb without noise.
Soft-light on the back mountains, semi-desert floor.
Jen drops below the checkerboard as we leave a beautiful part of the hike.
Thunder Mountain, a dominant monolith in the town, viewed from Bear Mountain summit.
Jen on way down but not out.
We came across the San Francisco mountains from another angle. (See previous blog). Note the wall since built to stop people scaling the edifice. (View from summit.)
Courthouse Butte prominent in the background.
Jenni reaches the checkerboard.
Perhaps the most wonderful position in a wondrous region.
Finally, the summit of the Bear.
'Tranquility and softness' in a harsh place.
Jenni and Jeffrey
Monday, January 28, 2019
After 6-days of illness, one of us decided to set the alarm for an early commencement in order to explore some of the beauty of Sedona, at higher elevations. An hour before the annoying bell was due to ring, I switched it off as I still felt ‘rotten’. By 11:15am, we crawled out of bed and sat on the couch, barely making the thirty feet journey. Nevertheless, our sterling efforts paid off as we rested there, after a long sleep and short crawl. Jen seemed to be going ‘downhill’, not toward the sofa but rather, health-wise, while I was stabilizing—whatever that means.
At 2pm, I was at the trailhead of Wilson Mountain, the highest in Sedona, a challenging but not too difficult hike, some 10-11 miles with an elevation gain of 2,650 feet. We had agreed I’d go as far as what’s termed ‘First Bench’ at over 1,900 feet because of health and time issues—late start in winter.
Late afternoon, on descent from Wilson Mountain summit.
In the early going, keeping an eye on the summit, just in case we miss it. (Altitude of 7,122 feet, Sedona's highest.)
A view one waits for over the years. Probably 500 feet from the surface in late afternoon. (Light management is proving difficult in Sedona but our son, Gavin, who has recently become an avid photographer, helped eliminate some shadows. Thanks, Gav.)
One of the highlights, the San Francisco Mountains. The text deals with some thoughts of the highest mountain in Arizona (12,633), the scene of two previous climbs/hikes. Remarkable place, some 40 miles north, in Flagstaff. (see picture below). We can understand this appearing to be another mountain scene to some, but it stirs the bones, energizes the muscles and lifts the spirits.
Mount Humphreys peak (see above).
We came across a number of mule-deer, three different herds, which added greatly to the hike. Nice pair at 1900 feet altitude gain.
In a harsh place, the sun softens outskirts of a remarkable town. The bridge below is the commencement point.
In glorious winter weather at ground-level, it's hard to envision the snow near the summit.
Gives perspective of the animals high up on the mountain when returning 'home' as the sun sets.
In the beginning, a typical Sedona setting.
The 'wrong side' of dusk from the trailhead; I anticipated a similar comment from Jenni.
Some of the sights and aspects of the hike included wonderful perspectives of Sedona which improved greatly on the way down as the sun began to set. Near the summit, the trail was covered in mud because of melting snow. There was quite a bit of snow around which would have fooled anyone at ground-level. In such gorgeous winter weather of the low 60’s, how could there be snow? Cactus plants were in abundance which provided something different to observe but keep one’s distance. One of the highlights, on the way down, was coming across at least three separate herds of mule-deer. I'm always fascinated in observing animals in their natural habitat, particularly when we are both in the open and on equal ground terms. Unfortunately, the light was poor as they tended to remain in the shade while the sun was behind them making photographs difficult—but we nevertheless try.
When I reached the discussed/'agreed' endpoint, time looked favorable and stopping before the end was not on the cards. I proceeded toward one of the summits and enjoyed spectacular sights. The low, soft sun enhanced most things it lovingly stroked. Sedona reds looked particularly invigorated. I ended up returning to the trailhead at dusk, always a gorgeous time for views in the wilds. Jen, I thought, would say it was the 'wrong side' of dusk.
Perhaps the highlight was seeing Mount Humphreys and the San Francisco Mountain range in the distance. The snow-capped range is about 40 miles distant. What made it so special is that Jen and I have hiked to the peak twice before, once on black-ice——memorable occasions. Seeing it in the distance, distinguished and daunting, left a wonderful feeling enhanced by the majestic sight and previous accomplishments.
Following the animals, added time to the return journey; so did the magnificence of the soft, setting sun as it brought out the best of the iron-oxide in the boulders. Have camera, must use it.
Jenni and Jeffrey
The grasses were striking as Jen goes cross-country.
'The Lake District' as seen from a peak.
Close to the base again as we wondered about the mountains.
Mount Horeb from our breakfast position. (See earlier blog of our adventure on it.)
We were fascinated by the grass; the color was unique and only such in this tiny area where we stood.
The poorer part of the town; the wealthier part is under the mountain slopes.
Jenni and Jeffrey
Wednesday, January 23, 2019
Lower Antelope Canyon, Page, Arizona.
Jen on the ridge, Pirin National Park, Bulgaria.
Difficult to express the magnificence and challenge of this region in Bulgaria.
A view of volcanoes from Mount Humphrey, the highest in Arizona and, a tough hike on ice.
Jen on the peak of Mount Sulur, Iceland.
Jenni and Jeffrey
Monday, January 21, 2019
38.16 The Drakensberg, Royal Natal National Park: Tiger Falls and surroundings. 38.17 Drakensberg Sun, Champagne Valley, the Grotto followed by a climb to a peak.
I'm sure my other leg was here a minute ago.
Uh Oh! The photograph flipped. Even the birds have taken to 'grass'...pity.
Another falls, not our destination, as we ascend steadily.
Sometimes, reflections exceed the original sight.
I nearly jumped out of my skin as the baboon barked vigorously as I approached, although he looked the other way.
We've written extensively and shown pictures at the top of the Amphitheatre. This is from Royal Natal National Park. (Left is Eastern Buttress and to the west, The Sentinel, ...
After returning from the top, we find this treasure.
Nature's equivalent of high-density living.
A fortress' above Thendele (right bottom).
Drakensberg Sun, Champagne Valley.
First destination and time for a break.
Drakensberg Sun, a wonderful resort well-positioned...just passing above and through.
The end of the line. We diverged above and out to 'dem African hills'.
Jenni and Jeffrey
Some perspective...looking down toward the Royal Natal Park, our accommodation 'sandwiched' below at Witsieshoek.