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Phoenix Mountain Preserve - #8 Combo, AZ
mini location map2014-01-25
8 by photographer avatarblack_toes
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Phoenix Mountain Preserve - #8 Combo, AZ 
Phoenix Mountain Preserve - #8 Combo, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 25 2014
black_toes
Hiking2.68 Miles 680 AEG
Hiking2.68 Miles   1 Hour   48 Mns   2.09 mph
680 ft AEG      31 Mns Break
 no routes
It's still surprising that no matter how crowded the parking lots along Squaw Peak Drive, you can quickly hike up into a virtual no man's land. I picked up one of the last two parking spaces on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, walked 100 yards up to the TH at the deadend and soon found myself all but alone on the steep Ruth Hamilton Trail. Over the next hour I met up with only a biker, a jogger and two hikers. Ah, paradise.

I walked the "8" trails for the most part, up on the 8B, down into the long valley on 8A and back into the inner basin on the 8, returning to the parking lot via the west saddle on the Nature Trail/Freedom Trail. Hardly a breeze, long shadows and interesting cloud patterns. Worked the camera to the bone.

My trekking pole is used largely as protection against dogs and snakes and I was glad I had it along today. Coming down the #304/#302 trail, I encountered a young couple with three dogs. The two larger ones were not only leashed but muzzled. A little dog tailed, unleashed. I stepped aside to let them pass but just as they did, the muzzled dog nearest me, growled and made a lunge toward my leg. I swung the pole quickly between us and went on my way. I was bitten a few months ago at the Colonnade Mall when a small dog, leashed, spun around and broke skin behind the knee. Guess I should take the pole on walks to the mall.

Back at the parking lot, I grew mystified by a buzzing sound. My first thought was bees, then I settled on mechanized vehicles in the park. As I was composing an angry letter in my mind to the parks department, I happened to see a man walking down the pavement with a remote control, operating an aerial camera, apparently shooting the fabulous sunset. He told me his camera can go a mile high and five miles out in distance and can zoom in on anything without detection. I was amazed, being as I am so far removed from the latest tech devices.
Meteorology
Meteorology
Sunset
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