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Sidewinder Ridgeback, AZ
mini location map2020-03-28
18 by photographer avatartibber
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Sidewinder Ridgeback, AZ 
Sidewinder Ridgeback, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 28 2020
Hiking4.99 Miles 761 AEG
Hiking4.99 Miles   1 Hour   37 Mns   3.15 mph
761 ft AEG      2 Mns Break
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Wanted to get in a decent hike with some sort of elevation this weekend but where to go to avoid the overfull parking lots and trails :-k .  I was going to do the Phx Preserve Loop off of 38th St but I feared I might not be able to find a place to park.  Second choice was Go John again as it wasn't crowded at all last weekend.  But then for some reason, I came up with the Phx Sonoran Preserve as they have ample parking.

I was able to find a place to park and started hiking counter-clockwise via the VC that was quite crowded.  I headed up the trail grabbing some photos and a couple movies.  There were more people than I would have liked but thankfully the wildflowers made up for it.  I was on the north end of the Sidewinder part when I discovered my memory card was full :o .  So I had to delete some pictures from a previous hike... at least I  hoped that was what I was deleting as I really couldn't see the small screen that well.  I was already operating on a low battery.  Shame on me for not checking both before I left the house.  Lesson learned!

Anyway, the moment I left that part of my loop I didn't see anyone for a couple miles until I got to the top of Ridgeback where the throngs began.  The flowers didn't start again until I started up and alongside the Sidewinder Trail.  The poppies were backlit by the sun so that was pretty.  The poppy field that I saw on the south side of the hill a month ago weren't there anymore but when I looked left (south) there were fields of Owl Clover, bright, beautiful pinks :y: .  I hoped my photos would show you what I saw and for the most part they did.  Just think, all those people over on the eastern side of the Sidewinder Trail would never see this beautiful scene.  I walked by it as I made my u-turn.  Some of the Owl Clover I passed a month ago was still blooming too.  

And now it was time to tackle the Ridgeback hill which is about 1/2 mile.  I realized what a great grade it was.  Of course, the temp was nice at 69 so I think that makes a big difference for me.  I even decided to tackle the Peak and that's where I encountered a couple families who had come up from the other side.  I actually was pretty impressed and told one younger kid to be nice to his sister (he was yelling at her) and then congratulated them both on getting up that hill.  They said thank you; how cute! 

I headed right down without stopping and encountered quite a few more people including more families.  One kid was showing off by running up the hill; as the rest of the family came up I chuckled of course; as did they because I called him a "showoff".  The wildflowers and views here are quite nice.  I tried to keep up a good pace as I headed down the side of the mountain and back to the main trail where I continued to encounter more people including additional families and of course, the bikers again.

It was a great afternoon.  I got done much sooner than I expected.  I guess when I can't film, I can really pick up my pace and that makes a lot bigger difference than I realize.  I got back to Tonto Jr and grabbed my last bottle of huckleberry lager beer :( (I now have 7 cans left), my mixed Chex and my car visor and sat down to enjoy this weather and the view.  I hoped when I saw my pictures that the Owl Clover would show up and it did.  My plan is to come back Monday after work and re-hike it including shooting video; I just can't help myself :stop: .
Owl Clover
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
Lupine, Brittlebush, Buckhorn Cholla, Poppies
For me, sometimes it's just as much about the journey as the destination.
Oh, and once in awhile, don't forget to look back at the trail you've traveled.
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