Our Location: Saddle Mountain BLM, Tonopah, AZ
I think I'm becoming a lazy sluggard. I just can't seem to make myself get up to take sunrise pictures in this colder weather. I know it's not cold comparatively speaking but I feel cold and I'm having trouble convincing myself to roll out, pull on cold clothes and turn on the heat before going outside. Turn on the heat and go outside. Now there is a brilliant idea, isn't it? Hahaha....
I am usually awake in plenty of time to catch the morning sun coming up and I kind of have a conversation with myself about getting up and out of bed, but they just don't seem to be rah-rah enough to make it happen. Riley offered me a good a kick in the pants to get me motivated but I declined. Ever helpful that young woman is, for sure.
|This view is from lower down on the mountain side....looking back toward the camping area...|
At 8 am I was dressed, downstairs, teeth brushed, hair combed, you know the drill. Had the heater and water turned on, along with getting post started by 8:10 am.
|That is where we hope to reach....|
|We've climbed part way up the mountain you see in this picture, to about where all of those green bushes are...|
We have no plans for the day, laundry has been bantered about as we are pushing our two week time. However I have a feeling that will be a chore we will need to tend to in Apache Junction when we arrive. I'm not sure either of us are motivated enough to do it before we leave.
Riley asked if we are having left over sausage soup for lunch and my answer was," unless you want to cook something else." We're having left over soup. It's very good soup, we've never used ground pork sausage before, usually we just take sausage out of the casing to make soup. This pound has a nice mild flavour, not too spicy for us. I was pleasantly surprised at the small amount of grease that remained when I fried it up. I dislike greasy soup and always rinse and pat dry any ground meat I've fried.
We finally hauled our butts out of our chairs and decided to try our new hiking boots today. We set off with a destination in mind, to reach the top of the mountain I climbed the back side of the other day. We've climbed between half and three quarters of the way up one of the mountains in our plan, and wandered around the ankles of the other one. We headed off cross country and I had to come back because I forgot the camera. Gosh, can you say blonde?
|We're heading up there past those long tall Ocotillo Cacti, over those rocks.....|
Off we went, through some slight washes and bigger ones too, finally making our way back to the spot we'd been a few days ago. We climbed what we thought looked like the easiest route. I'm telling you there wasn't an easy route, it just looked easy. We took our time, and climbed over rocks, around cacti, and under the brilliant blue of the overhead sky. It was cool in the shade but nice and warm in the sunshine. The mountain side is bathed in various shades of colours. Bright greens of Palo Verde trees, creosote bushes, darker green of various cactus, and ground covers. Browns too as some of the many rocks or boulders appear to have that deeply tanned colour one gets from being in the sun often. Others are a softer brown, more milk chocolate than dark rich caramel. Whitish colours are also very abundant where rushing water has wiped away all forms of vegetation and sediment leaving behind bare rock. That rock has gouges in various places, like haphazardly placed foot steps, but those are full of small pebbles that roll easily under foot. The angle of this bare rock is very steep, making walking tough. While the edges of these water ways are framed with jumbles of rocks, big, small, medium, flat, curved, sharp edged, smooth edges. Always one must watch for loose rocks that will appear to be solid only to give way once you step on them.
|Look, I made it up here!!!!!!!! Can you see that smile?|
|She's telling me that there is no way she would have made it to the top of that mountain....|
The vegetation varied as well on this climb. We walked on some 'grass' or new green growth in many places, it was evident around the many rocks. We encountered Ocotillo bushes, big and a few smaller ones too, Palo Verde trees with their sharp claw like branches, and various forms of cacti including small barrel, Teddy Bear, Diamond and perhaps some Pencil cacti as well. The colours of these cacti varied with greens, browns, living, dead, but all were spiny.
|Looking out over the camping area.....We are just out the picture on the left...|
|From the top of the mountain....yep, we climbed all the way up there....now we have to go back down...|
As we neared the top I don't think Riley believed she'd made the climb. The look on her face when she realized she would actually make the top was amazing. I stopped to let her find her way the last few yards to the top. I took a picture when she reached the saddle point of the two mountains. (Not the Saddle as in Saddle Mountain but the you know what I mean). She was pretty proud of herself as well she should be. It was an amazing effort and an extraordinary accomplishment on her part. I'm so proud of her.
|We climbed up this side....Doug is back behind the mountain side on the right...we could see him from the top...but only if we moved to where Riley was sitting down or higher...|
|This is the point on the back side of the mountain that I climbed the other day and had to turn around. Right about where the bare rock starts to show. It's a long way's from the point where I'm standing as I'm using the zoom feature.|
The view was stunning. We could see for many, many miles both into the camping area where we're parked and also behind us where we drove with the Dogsled the other day. We could even see Doug's (Miss Adventure Travels) Pinnacle from there. From our vantage point it looked as it were two hands recessed into the mountain side and holding the mountain top up.
|The Dogsled was parked down and way off to right a few days ago when I came up this side of the mountain. Below on the right is where the rock "face" is located, with the eyes being caves on the mountain side.|
|Looking back into the mountains back behind where the jeep road goes...|
The rest on the top was peaceful and we enjoyed the view. We decided we'd come back down on the other mountain as it looked a bit easier (we had climbed part way up this mountain before). In fact it was a bit easier in most places and we managed it with only a few tough spots. It was slow, hot work but we managed without any mishaps. Back down firmly on the valley floor, we headed off home to the Igloo to rest our weary feet and bodies. We both liked our boots and were very happy with the feel and the performance. Heavier than our shoes, high tops and hard soles all make them a bit tougher to use right now but soon we'll be used to them.
|Various cacti we noticed on our hike today...|
Back at the Igloo we both enjoyed all of the left over soup from yesterday, not one drop left. It was excellent. Like most soups they get better with age. The flavours have more time to meld I guess. After lunch and clean up it was time for us both to have a rest, no sleeping just some stretched out on our beds type of resting for the remainder afternoon.
|So many places left back there to explore another time...|
I finished my J.A. Jance book and started on a James Patterson book while resting this afternoon. Since I managed to start this post earlier this morning, and before laying down I edited the hike pictures, that meant I had less to do tonight. Yeah me.
|I believed that may be the pinnacle Doug was referring to in his post a few days ago....|
|To me, from here it looks likes hands holding up the mountain top...|
Around 5 pm I put on my running shoes, grabbed the camera, headed outside for sunset pictures. It was a quick fall from the sky without any fan fare tonight. I did however get a chance to walk for another hour and a half while waiting for and taking pictures. So I'm pretty happy with my effort today. Feels more like I'm getting back on track with my walking. I've learned to wear the knee brace when I go out walking in the camp area and my knee isn't giving me much trouble at all any more. Again, Yeah me.
|I think that looks like the top of a submarine, those posts or poles look like bristly....|
|Such view, yes, we climbed up that side ......|
I called my dad when I headed out for my sunset taking excursion but he wasn't home and so I left a message. I tried once again when I came back inside the Igloo and he answered. His lady friend Marion is still in the hospital and it looks like she will be heading elsewhere for some rehab. We talked for about 20 minutes or so before I let him go and continued with this post.
|The big yellow ball is starting to show signs of fading for the night....|
I'm much further ahead than I normally am at this time due to my efforts throughout the day. So I may try to keep doing that as it seems much less like work doing it this way.
|The sky is a beautiful colour...|
That was our day. It was an excellent one, we both enjoyed it and are quite pleased with our efforts. We hope you've had an excellent day as well, if not, we at least hope it had some good parts to it. Thanks for stopping by, feel free to drop a comment.
|Another day almost complete here...|
Until next time... take care, be safe,
|Once again, good night from Saddle Mountain BLM.|