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.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Hike-about 20: Western United States - 2014: Part B

On vacation

This is part two of the videos covering the Fall trip in a little of the Western United States (see next blog for part A).
In addition, Brian sings one of his meaningful compositions, accompanied by Neville on bass.

Tufas at Mono Lake, California.

View from peak of Mount Tallac, Lake Tahoe (South), CA.

Click on icon, bottom-right, for a full screen.


Jenni and Jeffrey

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Hike About 20 - Western USA, Fall 2014 (Part A)

A view from part-way up Angels Landing, Zion National Park, Utah.

Of thousands of pictures taken over nine weeks, we obviously had to reduce the number to a manageable few. We find that often the best pictures don't find their way to the blog for reasons that reflect our ineptitude. Nevertheless, we have selected those contained in the video below at random. Although one sets criteria, we are too emotional on the subject to provide an objective balance. The video covers the second part of the trip. Part B, will follow later.

To achieve a full screen, click on the screen icon below the right-hand corner.


Jenni and Jeffrey

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

20.34 Arizona: Grand Canyon, one of the highlights of this trip.

For the birds as Jen works out how the crow flies.

We put
off this hike for Thanksgiving Day in order to climb Humphreys Peak, the highest in Arizona.
Weather was a concern and our location, at the time, made it logical. Sunday morning, we set off from
Flagstaff with a loaded car knowing that after the hike, we would be sleeping in Williams. Upon arriving
at another incredible American treasure, we began adding layers of warm clothing. When we commenced our
climb from the end point, we began removing layers only to replace them on returning to the trailhead.

The colors yesterday were outstanding, never seen by us before at the Canyon.

Deliberately left blank.

Deliberately left blank.

Our first sighting of the canyon, after seeing it many times before, was overwhelming. That it's a
natural wonder of the world is a given. However, it made such an impression upon us because of the color.
There was much green in the rocks, scattered growth. Although the day began cloudy, the light was good for
photography. Later, the sun broke through and the clouds dissipated. We enjoyed all types of weather on the
day without any extremes. Clearly, something special was brewing which of course is mostly in one's hands
or mind to be exact. Clearly, one creates one's own challenges and successes.

On our return, looking towards the rim, our destination some 6 miles away and 3,160 feet higher.

'What's troubling you, son? You're not thinking of diving into the Colorado?"

One of the finest places to sit and take in the world.

we walked down to Indian Gardens which is 4.5 miles with a descent of 3,060 feet. Thereafter,
we headed to Plateau Point, a further 1.5 miles with little descent, perhaps another 100 feet. Thus, the ascent
would be over six miles, (Twelve roundtrip) and 3,160 feet elevation gain, much of it weighted toward the last
two miles. We were in for a workout. By the time we reached Plateau Point, a natural platform overlooking the
Colorado River, we felt a little weary and yet, the real action had yet to commence. We played on the rocks and
did something new when we scaled one of the little buttes that sits on the cliff edge. The climb was reasonable
but we would be less than honest if we did not admit the stomach was feeling strange on climbing down. We explained
to the editor, who does not like that kind of thing, that we were experiencing growth. She retorted that she too
is growing because she watched and even took some photographs. The last time we had to quit when she asked for
the marriage contract, with tears in her eyes—that's her way of showing her anger. We don't blame her. Hike-about
has some tense moments.

A little rock climbing, not going to forget this time or experience.

Nearly there although the down is the tricky part.

A position like none other for me.

As our blog system will be changing, we thought we might take this opportunity to give you an idea of
the psyche on the way up this wonderful hike. We felt a pain in the achilles tendon as we commenced while the
editor had an aching back. Helicopter? We made it to Indian Gardens in about thirty minutes, took in some water
and looked at the rim of the Grand Canyon and were overwhelmed. Inside the head, a little guy said 'you need
to do the remainder in under two hours.' Yeh right! We struck a deal with the editor that because it is an open
and busy trail, we would move ahead should she not hold the pace. We don't like doing it but sometimes one has
to allow the legs to open up. We always think of one of our animal heroes, Seabiscuit. As his trainer said,
'show him someone on his outside and he's 'gonna' kick down and fly'. We are often inspired by that horse.
Out in front were three young couples ranging in age from twenty-two to twenty-eight plus a whole lot of others.
We all knew that it was going to be a kind of race to the top. What a race! (The tendon never hurt again after
a quick rub—it never had the choice.)

The path in the foreground extends to Plateau Point, the slab above the Colorado River.

Plateau Point, the Colorado River below. Oh! That's Jen above it.

Even the flora took a bow on a glorious day.

Modesty dictates that one should be a reluctant to complete the story but we are writing it for when and if
we reach 85 years old. The strong couple took the lead and it was a battle. They increased the lead over the
first hour while we caught the other two and passed them but they sat on our heels. At the halfway stage,
we looked up to the rim and could not believe how high we still had to go. We know that courageous runners
lead from the front but we could not keep up with this couple. Forty years is quite a burden to carry. Admittedly,
they were carrying bigger backpacks but their body shapes were near perfect. Along the way, we passed all and
sundry but the front couple pushed ahead and extended the lead. We did not stop for photographs or to drink but
only to whistle to Jenni who was walking at her best pace, somewhere below. The zig-zags allow one to see people below.


Is that a wall or is that a...?

With a mile to go, we developed further inspiration and began to move up. An interesting point we often
see is that when catching up with people, the competitive ones will stop and make out as if they are taking in
the sights. It's a nice way of conceding without an overt act of surrender. You might think this is all so
competitive. Well, it is to an extent. Remember, however, if one does not push, one never improves. Hiking,
running or any activity needs a pace, needs a challenge. Back to the race...hike. The inspiration was working
as the gap closed. Within minutes, even to our surprise, we came upon the lead couple and passed them to open
a gap that they could never close. After an experience like that, after the excitement and adrenaline calms,
the rest can only be an anticlimax. Fortunately, the photographs help to take up the slack. Jenni arrived soon
after, having planned to rest every thirty minutes but did not. The 'kid's' doing well.

So big, so overpowering.

Forgive us if this appears as self-promotion but it was another of those hikes that lends itself to the challenge,
the endurance and the satisfaction that we are not ready for pasture. As to the time: One hour and fifty three minutes
over 4.5 miles, accumulating 3,060 feet.

One for the road...

The Grand Canyon, the experience, challenge and beauty will reside somewhere in the soul for a long time—forever we hope.


Jenni and Jeffrey

20.30 Page, Arizona. Lower Antelope Canyon, a light experience.

Canyons, by definition are lower than the surface of where we normally stand, a very strange definition
but then again who said we weren't a know. The images below are of rocks, boulders, sandstone...nothing
more than nature's 'heavies'-not unusual. The light is natural, the only outside agents were us and the camera.
See if you look at stones the same way again.

Since arriving in the high desert, my squaw has gone native-she wears the bandana regularly
and drinks the fire-water when I'm not looking.

We entered what is more cavern-like than canyon, a slot canyon to be more precise. (We had visited the upper
canyon some four or five years before.) Briefly, we were underground walking within very narrow passages, all built
by nature in rock, sandstone mainly. The canyons are under the control of the great Navajo nation, the tribe that
resides predominantly in the region. We have often mentioned that one of the laws of life is to receive reward only
after applying effort. This is an exception, unfortunately. We would have liked nothing better than to have hiked a
few miles, arriving at the splendid slot canyon.

Having the set the scene, turn up the volume and listen as Brian takes us into 'heaven' with voice and the images,
with sight.

Click arrow as well as icon for a full screen, (below right-hand corner.)


Jenni and Jeffrey

20. 31 Page, Arizona: A hike to Horseshoe Bend and then rock climbing for the 'kids' upriver. 20.32 Desert hiking proper.

Jenni captures a full frontal of Horseshoe Bend.

The walls of the Colorado River are overwhelming—upriver from Grand Canyon.

On her way following the river by way of rock scrambling. Moving right, turn left at the bend
and down the side. If you will, going around the bend.

Sun lights up rocks just at the right time while one of us perched comfortably.

Follow that bird. (slide 1)

Where'd the bird go? What a place for action! (slide 2)

One small step for man; apparently, one too many. Too old to chase birds...pity. (slide 3)

Hiking in Death Valley, California while sleeping in Nevada.

A little bleak, a little dry, more than a little attractive.

Heading to the peaks behind.

'The long and winding road'.

Our peak behind, camera focus is on the immediate danger.

Coming 'through the rye' on our return from the peak.

Jenni climbing rough, every young woman's secret desire, I'm told.

Cheers from the desert.


Jenni and Jeffrey

Monday, December 8, 2014

El Capitan Reserve: El Cajon Peak, San Diego's toughest.

Still on vacation.

Jenni peaks on El Cajon or El Capitan.

Tried to signal to the pilot for a ride down. Mount San Miguel behind.

It's wonderful to be on vacation...not really but it's the right thing to say. We hiked last week
and were busy these last few days but found a gap for one of the finest hikes around. In our opinion,
the El Capitan Peak is the toughest in San Diego, a little brutal in places. When we understand what
'little brutal' means we'll define it. In the meantime, this 12 mile challenge, over a rough track with
a cumulative gain of over 4,000 feet, puts one through the paces. Until the last two miles we were strong
and handling it well. However, that last bit became a little tiring. Our editor was superb after a rather
strange beginning.

The San Diego skyline as the sun breaks through.

One of the views into the valley below the immediate peak.

And then came the rain...

Jenni was keen to do the hike—she knows what's good for her. All was well until she sought directions
to the trailhead. We had only undertaken this one four times before so we decided to check again. We're beginning
to understand our limitations. After deciding to read some comments from other hikers, which was puzzling as she
knows the track well, she turned apprehensive. The comment "often viewed, seldom hiked" together with the statistics
got her into a solid whining frame of mind. The real kicker, which floored me, was when she said after 30 minutes
on the trail, "We should look for some very challenging hikes." Don't you listen to yourself. Maybe that's why
she's so lovable.

Time to leave the peak and head down, only another 6 miles. On the way down, there were 8 steep inclines.

Some late sunrays show Jenni the path which is not very attractive.

About half-way down from the peak, the sun lights up the ocean.

We began in good weather while watching the clouds form. It cooled quickly followed by forty minutes of light rain. As Dad used
to say," Jeffrey, go stand out in the rain, it makes everything beautiful." We suppose there are exceptions. Thereafter, the sun broke through the heavy clouds which were obviously intimidated, as they scattered soon thereafter. By late afternoon, the sky was clear. What a day. At time of writing, the editor has identified numerous body parts that are complaining furiously. Back to vacation for another two days.


Jenni and Jeffrey

Sunday, December 7, 2014

20.37 Nevada: Grapevine Canyon, near Bullhead City, bull but much action. 20.38 More Mojave Desert 20.39 Bill Williams Mountain, AZ 20.40 Watchman Trail, Zion.

I thought I saw an editor, somewhere in a slot canyon.

It was difficult to allow the eyes to leave this scene.

Davis Dam and Lake Mojave from a 'trail' in the Mojave Desert, Nevada.

We found it quite paradoxical, hiking in the desert this trip. When we stayed in Nevada in the earlier part of
Hike-about 20, we hiked in Death Valley, California. When we slept in Arizona, we hiked in the Mojave Desert,
Nevada. It was quite amusing that not only were we staying on the border of the states but the times were
different, too. As we crossed the state lines, a couple of hundred feet away, the clock moved back or forward an hour
each time. The first time it happened, we had a minor disagreement as the telephone gave a different hour from
Jenni's watch—quite amusing.

Nevertheless, some of the most interesting times or to put it bluntly, the most fun that was had, took
place in the deserts. We are not agitating to live in one or visit during summer but we sure got a kick out
of being in the environment. The various experiences we are enjoying are proving to be exciting and enriching.
At last, we are getting a taste, just a taste mind you, of the vast world we inhabit.

Early morning rain made the granite slippery, changed the nature of scrambling.

A burning and prickly bush. Never thought we'd love the desert.

Leaving the slot canyon with a little help from a friend.

We had no idea what to expect when we entered Grapevine Canyon. What we did experience was cool weather,
clouds and partial sun, slick and wet boulders, sufficient granite to build enough kitchen slabs for all of America,
scrambling on scree, climbing over boulders, through bushes, ascending mountains without trails, path searching
and a final steep climb. There is no trail for the hike; it is more instinctive than planned. We smiled when
the editor grabbed a stick and used it to draw a line in the sandy parts while placing stones on the rocky areas.
We know when she does that it's a show of no confidence in our superior directional skills. We’re a big boy now so
we can nearly live with that attitude. In fact, based on our recent record, it’s surprising that she gets out
the car to hike with her man. We are most fortunate.

Petroglyphs or old world graffiti, from 1,000 years ago.

Entering the slot canyon with legs wide apart to use walls; a little tight, a little tricky,
a lot of fun.

Everyday wonders occurring whether we observe or sleep.

We arrived in Bullhead City after spending three days in Williams, the gateway to The Grand Canyon.
While there, we rested a day after our wonderful hike on Bright Angel Trail—still deriving a glowing feeling
from it. We hiked the Bill Williams Mountain and enjoyed it, too. We had views of much of the surrounding region
including the amazing San Francisco Mountains, a hike from the previous week. We even climbed the lookout tower
at the peak to search for wildfires. However, we are inexperienced in this field so instead, spent the time
taking photographs and admiring the city from 2,500 feet above. Back to the bull…city. It sits on the east bank
of the Colorado River opposite Laughlin, a gambling city on the western side. The river separates the two cities
and the great State of Arizona from the…State of Nevada.

Found this to be a very powerful scene.

Towards the destination, through canyon up to the mountains in rear. We were in a wash, perhaps
why the vegetation so lush. (Notice stick in Jen's hand—see comment in second paragraph.)

On our second night, we decided, following a hike and bath that we should return to Nevada (across the
Colorado) to earn money. In business these days, our record is nothing to admit in public. Fortunately, we do
not have the instinct, desire or interest in gambling. Nevertheless, we have a deficit to make good. We arrived
and checked out the casino floor. The first thing we discovered was a Coke machine from which heavy gamblers
could help themselves. We were off to a great start. Our editor, who is the gambler of the twosome, reached into
the wallet—guess whose back pocket?—withdrawing a twenty. We’d like to say twenty-thousand but that would be untrue.

Overhead transmission lines wherever we went on this trip. Now which way, left or right?

The contrast of desert and abundance of water was paradoxical.

There we stood searching for the blackjack machine. Being highly educated, we have the number system
between one and twenty-one taped; thus we have a great advantage over most. The last time we were in a casino,
perhaps in the last century, there were live croupiers. When we began to sing, “Where have all the croupiers
gone,” our editor kicked us, always gently. We found a table with the image of a beautiful woman acting in
the role of croupier, in video form. She almost looked real, even her chest seemed to hang over us. For ten
minutes, we sat and tried to play but alas, we were stumped. A fellow player came across and showed us which
button we were failing to push. At that stage, we must have looked very impressive—of course, it was our
strategy to look stupid but cleverly beat the system—a low key approach.

Jenni shows a lot of 'guts' but nothing a good diet and exercise can't fix. Oops!

Early morning along the Colorado River, from Bullhead City, Arizona, a golden moment.

In the end, there was only one loser. Jenni won back her stake plus some coins for the laundry.
It amounted to a win because the $20 was written off initially. After she placed the money in her wallet,
it dawned on the ’boy hero’ that Jenni had come out a few cents up but she also had an extra $ 20 in
her wallet; we appeared to be short $ 20. That’s what she termed a ‘good win’. They say if you can’t spot
the joker than you’re it.

Back to the slopes, at least one does not have to be too bright, only careful.


Jenni and Jeffrey