New Zealand 2017: Tongariro Crossing and Mount Ngauruhoe.


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 often.

Friday, March 24, 2023

57:19 Tenerife: Los Organos La Orotava, a scramble up a mountain providing great views...including some closing pictures from an incredible island.

Looking upon the city of Puerta Del Cruz.

After many years of bewilderment, I think I have the answer finally whether a falling tree in a forest makes a noise should nobody be around to hear it. It's complicated but until next time...
  Near the completion of an unusual hike, one which we devised ourselves, we arrived in a small town. Unfortunately, we won't be able to patent or register this route but we can live with the disappointment. The enjoyable part of arriving in a town or village is that we can reward ourselves with a hot beverage or cold one, depending on the temperature. Sometimes, we'll even have a hot beverage in warm weather and a soda in cold conditions. Heck, I'm sure this is truly fascinating information that you wanted to read. My pleasure. It really makes for a wonderful contrast, that is, spending most of the time in the wilderness generally or when a town is close by, arriving in such town for spoiling. 

  What I really wanted to convey is at times like this, having walked a number of miles and then resting at a sidewalk cafe with a Coke Zero in hand, absorbing the surroundings and feeling the adrenaline from the experience settle, we both blurted, not for the first time, how wonderful it is to be in a foreign country (This is not a political feeling, whatever that means, but rather something emotional.) We do spend much time in other countries and it's quite difficult to explain the feeling but it does add to one's sense of freedom, experience, education and knowledge, and of of course, the newness or differences. 

  Before Hike-About, but for a few international hiking experiences, particularly in New Zealand, South Africa and Spain, most of foreign travel involved walking the big cities, visiting museums, we skipped the ballet, and an assortment of other city style activities. While the natural tendency for humans is to seek comfort—we spent half our lives doing that—over the last two decades, we find it's inhibiting in many ways. It's restrictive. However, that's a complex subject for another time.

A view from high up the mountain.
Mount Teide, a view of the volcano from yet another position. Forests of trees on this side, fairly barren on the other (See below).
The other side of Mount Teide...Unteide, not a tree in sight. 
Loved this forest although someone was dragging her heels.
Weather changing while we observe.
Another perspective of the icon, Mount Teide.
Some general photographs which made favorable impressions. 

Loved the location, the wild waves and of course, the background.
Not much further to go.
The wallflower goes into the wilderness, a different form of habitation.
A variety of experiences along and above the coast.
Resting after returning from the water.
Looked at the city from 4 sides and multiple heights; this was one of the better views.
We cut across the rocks, the grey coloring indicating heavy clouding. 
The village of El Priz, a place we frequented on foot...may we mention...frequently.
We stayed in a building near Haifa, Israel in a structure cut into the mountain along the same lines as this one, many years ago.
In the end, home is where the heart is. Our accommodation has been somewhat rustic but the views are unbeatable. (I tried explaining it to Jen one night when she was freezing, scared and miserable).  
Yet another trail.
A tough hike in Anaga Park with a view of a distinguished icon.
A private Atlantic pool and grotto (blue).
A memorable day as we climbed and scrambled in a gorgeous region.
We'll miss this sight and many others of Teide.
And KLM brought us back safely, despite having to negotiate the colossal mountains of Holland.


Jenni and Jeffrey

Ta-Ta Teide.

Friday, March 17, 2023

56:23 Arizona: Tonto National Forest: Los Osos: Cloud our lives with such beauty or we've literally 'looked at clouds from both sides now'.

Looking up at a mix of clouds and down toward a gorgeous lake.

We have found over the years that when the weather appears poor, one should make an aggressive argument for not remaining indoors. Clearly, when it is obviously terrible and appears not likely to change, stay home. We can think of times when we were caught in lightning storms, heavy rains and other adverse conditions, not pleasant experiences to admit. Nevertheless, had we remained indoors, we would have missed facing adverse weather probably less than on ten occasions over 13 years. Following the logic through, we also would have missed hikes somewhere close to 90-100 times, probably more. Expressed differently, for every 9-12 occasions that we hiked in what appeared to be imminent bad weather, only on one of those days did we get wet. In addition, besides being able to get out and enjoy the adventure, the so-called adverse weather usually provides a different slant on the views, the sights. 

 This was one of those occasions when it began to rain while at 'home', including along the way to the trail, stopped for a while, commenced again for a short period on two further occasions and then ceased completely. For the first half of the hike the visibility was poor with the odd breakthrough only. From the turnaround position following a speedy brunch, nature provided spectacular scenes as the clouds parted, the sun shone somewhat, and the views through the clouds allowed for extraordinary views of the lake, the mountains and other clouds of incredible shapes, too. In addition, sunspots on the mountains were unique in and of themselves. On our return to homebase, we discovered it had rained throughout our period away. Good thing we were outdoors, for the holes in our roof, would have made for an unpleasant morning. 

Every cloud has a silver lining, water is silver from the reflection.  
  A horseshoe of which the offroad drivers make much use.
Someone thinks she's pretty smart.
Now we're witnessing action from above...with no rain.
Cloud action from below.
Became dull again (not Jen) as the clouds mounted a further attack.
A great place to absorb nature and benefit from the tranquility it dispenses as well as the joy it provides.
Something's cooking in the valley.

Jenni and Jeffrey

Monday, March 13, 2023

57.18 Tenerife: Afur to Taganana, a highlight and penultimate hike. What a climax to a special trip.

On the way down to the coast, we find ourselves ascending. Heck, we follow the trail not logic.
On a cloudy day, the sun breaks through and gives the camera a hard time. Jen also seems to be having a hiccup or two.
Trying to make sense of the terrain. I can't fathom how they operate the lawnmowers down at the bottom.
Frequent stream crossings. The proverbial slippery stone-slope.
Are these plants real? Jen closing in on the coast.
Jen reaches the beach...not quite a place to sunbathe on a towel in the traditional manner.
A minute later, she turns on her heels and heads for the local swimming pool. On our way down, we came across a couple bathing in a stream below a waterfall. Apparently the heavy flow of water had washed off their swimsuits. Jenni refused to allow me to help the young woman deal with her dilemma. (Apparently, 'dilemma' is the Spanish word for string bikini.) I now understand why people say that travel is educational, eye-opening.

In a magnificent, but harsh environment, arguable the worst rendition of 'Sitting on the Dock of the Bay' could be heard.
We make the turn and head up to a peak which is on the way to Taganana.
The path appears to lead us directly to the town icon.
A scene viewed from a multitude of positions.
Nature shows off her obstacles, dangers and her raw, gorgeous features.
Worth the effort of the tough hike to witness this scene.
Turning to face our recent outward path.
Getting close to destination but could be beaten by a heavy mist.
Facing toward the interior.
Mist lifted within moments.
We elect to take the coastal path to return rather than the internal loop. Put on extra distance but gave us extra beauty. Jen enjoying the path.
Nooks and crannies provide multi-faceted views.
This is something we found lying about. It dates to the end of December following our return from Arizona, the Hike-about before Tenerife. It's a story of Hope. 

  We arrived in San Diego to a warm welcome—actually, that should read a cold and wet greeting. It took a while for the sun to return to the California desert at which time we caught glimpses of what the county’s weather expectations were. It was nice to see the sun again although we do like the rain, too, preferably between 1 and 3 each morning. We allow leeway because after all, we are not spoiled. 

  On this occasion, we tried different accommodation for the short visit. We were living in Rancho Bernardo but not on a farm. We ‘shared’ a house with the owners, the real boss's name is Hope. Share is a subtle concept which the hostess, Hope, mentioned—we are upstairs, they're down. The split is not quite ‘even’ although we do have a carpet in our place, making for some common ground. We live in a section with a kitchen, a sort of bedroom and sitting area and a terrific patio. It’s been an enjoyable, comfortable stay. 

  We have always liked the region with the added benefit of much hiking available close by. The views in the county are wonderful as this is in the mountainous region of San Diego. I should have mentioned we also have a fully equipped/functional bathroom with all the usual appurtenances but limitations because of house rules relating to water usage in the desert. Although, should we be desperate, the patio provides flexibility and being on the second floor, allows us scope for improvisation. That the weather prevents us from sitting outside is a negative but at least it offers an outdoor clothes drying facility, between raindrops, of course. What more could we want? 

  Should there be any limitations, then there is one which is at worst, a minor irritation. When we arrived, our Host showed us the board hanging on the inside of the front door. In order to control people traffic as well as to keep each other informed (all 4 of us) of who is home or away from the house, we sign in on our return and sign out upon leaving. The process involves placing one's magnetic name tab in the appropriate square. Easy enough. After practicing the procedure for twenty minutes or so, Jen had mastered it or is that ‘mistressed’ it. One does not want to use the incorrect terminology these days. I took an extra few minutes, but wanted to ensure I had it sorted out in my head. I'm not privileged to think as fast as Jen on the white-board provided. 

  Here’s the thing. The couple are very prim and proper about it all. Hope could easily be a high school headmistress. We did not want to come across ignorant or lazy. However, we had a dilemma. When we depart, it’s no problem to move our labels to the 'out' box. However, let's presume we are bringing in groceries after a shopping trip. Each time we pass through the door, should we be moving our names between the two positions. I understand we are only outside the house for a minute or so, but would we upset our hosts, particularly Hope, by not adhering to the rules? Perhaps we should have asked for the detailed book of house rules earlier. Imagine if we walked outside to fetch the groceries but forgot to mark the board accordingly. When our hosts checked the board, noticed we were not inside, and then decided upon doing something private in the lounge area believing we were away and then we walked back inside. It gave us pause for thought. In that situation, we would have hoped that Hope would have had faith in our honest mistake and showed us charity

  We could not bring ourselves to question our hosts of this necessity as it appeared to be an integral part of managing their guests. Unfortunately, on our 10th day of the stay we left for a hike and forgot to move the name markers. When we apologized for this oversight, our host let us know that he had checked to see the status of our car. It was obviously not parked in its usual spot as we don't walk to hiking trailheads. He deduced we were away. Of course, he had no way of knowing whether it had in fact been stolen. The real issue with a system of this complexity is that unless one is confident that the various parties will always mark the board accordingly, one cannot be confident of accurate information based solely upon scanning the board. 

  Where does this leave us? Could this put a dampener on our whole stay? Who knows? In the meantime, we are currently developing a sophisticated system which I believe could prove foolproof. However, Jenni says instead of their system, we should ring the bell upon entering and should shout 'Hello' or on the way out, ‘Bye’. That’s so simple in this advanced technical age. Wait until she sees my electromagnetic-plasma-3 megabyte-automatic-face reader/odor detector system, currently under development. 

 By the time we left 'High School', we were ready for a restful vacation in the Canary Islands where we had hope for a wonderful adventure. Shared entries, not a good idea, shared experiences, delightful. 


Jenni and Jeffrey 

That evening we enjoyed a sunset over a sister island...Gran Canaria.

Conclude with a tidy (Teide) corner.

A delightful scene mixing a volcano, ocean and city/suburban life.

Less mixing. 
  Jen shares the limited 'spotlight' with Teide.