Yesterday, we started our 3-day off cycle and awoke early to this view of the moon outside our rig. The weather has been gorgeous with temps in the 60's in the mornings and highs in the low 80's.
A couple of days ago, Joyce and I had been talking to Mitch, just one of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Biologists that has an office here at the refuge. Mitch told us that he would be hiking down into The Grand Canyon on Monday to do a fish survey in the Colorado River. That peaked our interest and we soon began discussing his adventures in the Canyon as he has hiked in and out a few times but, it had been a while since his last trip. Before long, Mitch invited us to go on a hike with him at Sara Park. You may recall Joyce and I hiked in Sara Park a few weeks ago. However, there are a number of trails in the park and we planned on returning. Subsequently we accepted Mitch's invitation and made plans to meet him at 8:00.
We all showed up on time. Mitch brought along his two constant hiking companions, his dogs. As it turns out we later learned that Mitch has been hiking this particular trail nearly every day for 6 weeks in preparation for his trip back to The Grand Canyon.
|Mitch and his dogs|
Joyce and I showed up overdressed as this was a fast paced hike up the side of Picnic Table Mountain.
Much of the trail on the side of the mountain was narrow, rocky and slippery as some of the trail had been washed away by the recent rains. We were hiking in Big Horn Sheep territory and Mitch pointed out potential areas were the sheep would bed down as we climbed the side of the mountain. We certainly enjoyed the views that sheep enjoy along the steep rocky cliffs. But to be honest I spent most of my time concentrating on my next step! Mitch just took it all in stride confident in his abilities and knowledge of the trail.
|Lake Havasu City in the distance|
From high on the cliff we could see this lizard outlined on the ground below with rocks. I zoomed in with my camera for this picture. Mitch told us that it was created by a local hiking club, The Leaping Lizards.
Joyce and I stopped for this photo opportunity taking advantage of the break to catch our breaths! I know...I need to get rid of the straw hat and find a real hiking hat! We would have been better off in shorts and hiking sneakers instead of our pants and boots.
Getting down from the side of the mountain was another challenge. As we came down the narrow switchbacks we had to slide and jump down some 5 ft. drops. Keeping our balance was essential to keep from tumbling down the side. Most of the hike and particularly keeping up with Mitch was too arduous to allow for much picture taking. However, we thoroughly enjoyed the hike. I know that this hike with Mitch pushed Joyce out of her comfort zone but she pushed on like a trooper. I'm glad Mitch was with us as I don't think we would have done that trail without an experience hiker leading the way!
We had a great time and plan to return to Sara Park to take on some of the more challenging trails with a renewed since of confidence.