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Phoenix Sonoran Preserve N - Highpoints, AZ
mini location map2020-04-21
15 by photographer avatartibber
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Phoenix Sonoran Preserve N - Highpoints, AZ 
Phoenix Sonoran Preserve N - Highpoints, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 21 2020
Hiking5.74 Miles 961 AEG
Hiking5.74 Miles   2 Hrs      2.94 mph
961 ft AEG      3 Mns Break
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
I suspect this is my last long hike after work. The parking lot wasn't very full at 2:30 (my boss let me leave work 1/2 hr early). High was supposed to be 82 but I don't think it hit that. I decided to do the loop clockwise starting with the Ridgeback Peak. You start on the Ocotillo Trail after coming off the connector from the parking lot before making the right hand turn (north) onto Ridgeback Trail. Definitely almost the end of the wildflowers; especially the lupine altho there was some scattered about. The cholla are blooming so that was nice. Getting up the hill seems to go fairly quickly initially as the grade is so nice but once you turn south, the steepness picks up a a tad so you have to dig in a little. It's a short rise though and being in the shade, it makes it that much easier.

There was one gal who circled the top before heading down. I had considered doing one circle but decided not to and just kept on heading back down (NW) the mountain. I passed through the former heavily wildflowered section and saw remnants of the owl clover patches and now some miscellaneous cactus blooms. Headed east on the Sidewinder it seemed a fast walk as not a lot to see altho now the wind was starting to pick up and the temperature started to drop. As I neared the intersection with the Apache Wash Connector it almost got nippy. I looked to the north and west and could see what seemed like a layer of dust.

As I headed up the north side of Sidewinder hill, it really picked up and a bike rider coming down commented about it. It didn't look like it was going to rain but it felt like it wanted to. I figured the wind was blowing out the cool air preparing for the heat wave :( . I decided to go to the peak as the sun came out now and the wind died down a tad. It was a nice trip up to the peak. (I called it Ocotillo Peak in a previous trip log which I will fix as Sidewinder seems more appropriate. In fact, for some reason I thot this part of the trail was Ocotillo but it is Sidewinder so I have to fix a couple trip reports. And now, I remember seeing the post with AV on it which means Apache Vista Trail ](*,) , sheesh.)

On this side of the hike I seem to see more people as usual. The views to the north in the valley are still colorful with the stinknet and now the trees are greening up. I made my way down and around to the VC and back to Tonto Jr. It really was a nice last long afternoon hike. Just sad that it may be my last for awhile and now no gym either.

Oh, I saw twenty lizards, 15 of them in the first two miles :o .
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
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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