New Zealand: Along the Ben Lomond Trail.


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 the end of 2022, the blog contained over 1,470 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.
ur 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."

"A Life Experience As No Other: Dare to Seize the Day Together", published by Fulton Books, depicts our life on the road and mountains until the beginning of 2017. It has developed 'exponentially' since then.

Jenni and Jeffrey Lazarow

Whereas we continue to update the blog regularly, we no longer circulate email notifications.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

9.52 Mono Pass above Ruby Lake, onto Summit Lake and beyond

We moved from Mammoth on Friday with reluctance, heading towards Bishop for the Sabbath, not before completing the hike covered in the missive, Mammoth Mountain. We needed the rest by Saturday, which we suppose, is an understatement. Today, Sunday, we completed our sixth hike in seven days, accumulating close to 55 miles on rough terrain, in total. Our editor sure sets a blistering pace. In fact, in these last two hikes, which we prefer to call experiences; they were superb beyond belief. Fortunately, we seemed to have more energy than at any time before. There may be something in the ‘fiction’: The best is yet to occur. We doubt it but it’s a nice philosophy, we think, to pursue.

We are so overwhelmed by the joy and elation of today’s 11 miles and 2,800 feet accumulative elevation gain, reaching over 12,600 feet in an amazing place, that words fail us. With that in mind and a need to look for some more words, we will let the blog be ‘pictures without words’. Frankly, in the end, we had no idea which photographs to choose; we have more than two hundred. One wonders how we completed the hike.

The previous missive, which took place after this one, if you will excuse the planned mix-up, brings Hike-about 9 to an end. Almost 3 months have passed, leaving us the challenge to find our 'feet' in San Diego.

We would like to express, as always, with great appreciation our thanks to those friends who made a special effort to offer comments, twists and advice as well as a feeling of love that rode on their words. We hope that's not sloppy but we felt it.

We look forward to seeing you on Hike-about 10 (N'H)


Jenni and Jeffrey

It's advisable to click on a photograph for enlargements. There are few captions as the pictures tell their own story.

Viewed from above Summit Lake at over 12,600 feet—after crossing Mono Pass

A gem at Ruby Lake

Beyond Mono Pass, the sun sets off the silver

Summit Lake reflecting at over 12,000 feet

Snow crossing in shorts

Beware of falling rocks might be an appropriate warning

A solitary hiker (or editor) through the Pass

9.50 Emerald Lake up to Sky Meadow (Mammoth) : 9.53 Bishop Pass trail to Long, Spear and Saddleback Lakes

A little action building

Sun breaks through, but not on Long Lake

Editor forced to walk 'the log', Lake Emerald (Mammoth)

Sometimes our editor can be very amusing; other times she is delightful. That should be worth a bit of favorable treatment. We digress. She has these two issues that are worrisome, though. The first is: An insensitivity to our feelings. Just the other day, she mentioned that whenever she gains elevation in excess of 1,500 feet, her heart races and she often feels overcome with elation. We remember when she used to feel that way about ‘you know who’. We are compared with elevation these days. However, we still compare her to ‘a summer’s day’.

Spear Lake looking anything but sharp

Order in nature's untidiness

The other issue is fear of lightning, well founded, of course. We agree entirely and understand as well as share her trepidation. However, yesterday for example, we wished to make a very early start but she preferred to sleep late. We concede she did accede to our request after a reasonable amount of ‘begging’. However, this morning we needed to do some work so we agreed to a much later departure. Earlier, we found her pacing on the patio, her brow creased and her face pale. We understood the problem. She was checking for clouds. “Can’t we wait until sunrise so we can at least have a reasonable chance of spotting black clouds?” we asked. Truth be told, when we began dating our editor 43 years ago, she made no disclosure of this fear.

Majestic, Your Majesty

One of many, many lakes

We spent much time in the Inyo National Forest over the last week or so. It needs no confirmation from us as to its spectacular nature. In general, the diversity of California is unbelievable. From our limited knowledge and perspective, we are amazed in continuing to find varying sights that encompass nearly every aspect of the geography of the world. Let's not forget its neighbors—don't even get us started on Utah, Ariz...

The Sky Meadow hike was a short one, no more than five miles, with an elevation gain of about 1,000 feet. It was a day in which we had to slow down a little and perform some mental exercise instead—not a bad thing. The latter hike to Lake Saddleback was just over 7 miles with an elevation gain of 1,500 feet. The views from the basin of the mountains, which have experienced glacial action, ‘knock the socks’ off a person. The lakes are not bad either. We think the lesson of hiking in this area is never to take it for granted as the views are continuous. We suppose it’s possible to become blasé when such beauty confronts one at every turn.

Never a dull moment except...Saddleback Lake

Jenni on the way home and then onto San Diego

Finally, the last four days in Bishop have added a further dimension to the trip. The downside to this town is the heat, although it seems to cool in the evenings. However, wherever one stands, the towering mountains appear to have their peaks in the sky and clouds; it’s not that they are bashful; rather, damn intimidating. The state, as we write ad nauseum, gives one an idea of the great beauty of the planet we inhabit.


Jenni and Jeffrey

A tradition on most of our hikes ...there's no accounting for behavior. The last jump until next time (N'H)

In case we forget why we are vegetarians. Are the worms on ice or perhaps, fresh? Does it make a difference?

Monday, July 23, 2012

9.51 Hiking Mammoth Mountain—Sierra ‘high’ in the High Sierras

Jenni steps it out and up with Lake Mary below

Epitomizes Mammoth

Fortunate to be feeling on top of the world...again

Jenni learns how to show off from...Guess who? (Still has a bit of work to do in this field)

Wherever we searched, the suggestion was always to ride the gondola to the peak and either hike or cycle down. One writer even mentioned the gondola up and a 6-minute hike to the peak. You can imagine how excited we were about such an idea. After frustrating results, we decided to go our own way via the Twin Lakes Trailhead. The official distance ranged from 8 to 10.5 miles, while the elevation gain, from 2,500 to 3,000 feet. Well, there you are—take your pick. Everyone agrees the summit is at 11,053 feet. At last, consensus!

The 'Lake District' encircled by Sierra Mountains

Having mentioned the figures, we have never enjoyed an outing as much as this one—we were sorry when it ended but not sorry enough to try it again. Next visit, which won’t be far off (N’H), we’ll do it again. The level of elation is difficult to describe. Suffice to say, we were worried about the feeling that would fill the void once the ‘high’ dissipates.

Peaking after a glorious climb

Some days, life is more than a great privilege

It was a lot narrower than this higher up—Twin Lakes below

It was extremely steep to begin, continued along narrow and tight paths with sheer drop-offs at high altitudes, climbed in places that we thought were not possible to surmount, over crags and with a final push, on scree up a sharp incline. Superlatives fail us in describing the experience and the incredible varying beauty. It’s not a trail but a rough path and in places, a scramble. The magnificence of the surrounding mountains, the many lakes far below and the awesome views at each corner, angle and side cause the spirits to soar. One of the advantages in Mammoth is that one has exposure at all times to the landscapes. The writer, at least, is in love with Mammoth—a town that is ‘spoiled rotten’ with great scenery, mountains, hikes, lakes, not to forget the winter skiing opportunities...

Staggering mountains wherever one turns

Somewhere on top of Mammoth Mountain

On a hike for which we have difficulty finding appropriate superlatives, one would expect a busy trail. There was no other hiker on the trail while we were there, both up and down. Funnily enough, if one walks (runs) up, one is entitled to ride the gondola down without charge.

Looking down on Mammoth ski-lift stations

Riding on the Dragon's Back—first stop on way to summit

Directions at the summit

After we had a bear visit our motel recently, our editor seemed to be in deep thought. “Do you think a bear could get into our room?” she inquired. We answered, “Perhaps we should look through the peephole before opening the door.” Then we looked through our large window and noticed outside walls covered in timber below us. “Hmm, we suppose it’s possible,” we conceded. On Friday morning, the garbage bin below our room had been toppled, leaving a disgusting mess strewn about the passage. Guess who came to dinner, or at least, an early breakfast? Not Sydney Poitier, we don’t think.

Jenni begins descent

Finally, we had cups of tea at the summit, reminiscent of being in Switzerland. It was very civilized and enjoyable but we prefer to arrive at the top and remain 'uncivilized' amongst fellow hikers—real snobs.


Jenni and Jeffrey

Jenni captures early morning tefillah (prayer)

Dragon at Jenni's back

Back on the ground, nearly ready to go again