Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Arizona Adventures.

A few days ago, Nathaniel and I decided to go road tripping - to have fun, spend time together, and not worry about XYZ. He took a few day's away from flying and I got permission to miss two symphony rehearsals... We hired a sitter for the kitties, threw a bunch of stuff in the car, and headed towards the desert. The high desert.

8+ hours later (including but not limited to three very hair raising descents where Nathaniel laughed at my imaginary brake-foot and curse words, as he sped around mountain curved roads), we arrived in Flagstaff, Arizona. Alive.

Its great to be "away" - to not focus on the things I can't do, and instead enjoy the things I can. While doing them with the person I love the most. And while I love Carlsbad and being home, its downright tough seeing my bike and knowing that I can't yet ride it. Not just yet anyway. Up here - at 7,000+ feet - its different. It would be too damn cold anyway.

So here are a few snapshots from our adventure thus far. Tomorrow we're hitting up the Grand Canyon and perhaps Sedona on Friday. But we'll see...

Enjoy the shots - its been fun playing around with the cameras.

We left one desert in exchange for another. Hair raising descent towards Indio. Joshua Tree National Park mountains in the background.
Blue Figurine, Car Lot, Art Americana, circa 2010.
Endless CA Road, I-10, flanked by wildflowers and saddle mountains.
Friendly cows. Perhaps the one positive of my wacky sinuses - I couldn't smell them.
Friendly Arizona dirt devil.
Flagstaff Visitor's Center + Train Depot. We made it!
Hike #1, along the most-excellent FUTS (Flagstaff Urban Trail System). We walked south towards Soldier's Loop, enjoyed the high elevation and views, and then back. The mountain air feels awesome!
We made a new friend at the Museum of Northern Arizona.
Hungry? Hopi Pear.
A birdie friend for Tabbitha and Anabelle, thanks to more Hopi craftspeople.
Pine Tree bark!
View of Humphrey Peak from Elden. We really wanted to climb Humphrey - the tallest point in Arizona at 12,000+ feet - but the snowpack was too thick without the use of crampons. And I didn't really relish the opportunity to carry an ice axe or something of the sort to stop myself from sliding over the edge. I have a hard time maintaining my balance as it is, let alone at high elevations and with spiky-things strapped to my feet.
Clearly, the chocolate-caramel egg didn't stand a chance at 9300 feet.
Snowbank with the desert waaaay in the background. Looking Northeast towards Sunset Crater.
Nathaniel found another USGS Survey Marker! YEA!
Top and c-c-c-cold! Windy, too!
Flagstaff overlook on Elden Mountain.

Inner contours of a pine tree, destroyed by fire.
We survived! And how could you NOT love a path dubbed "Fatmans Loop"? And yes, we did walk the trail.
With all the driving, culture, Americana, and hiking - we figured a beer OR beer sampler was in order. Hooray for the Beaver Street Brewery - proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy - according to Nathaniel. At this point, I couldn't agree more.
Here's to health and happiness. The Grand Canyon awaits tomorrow and we both can't wait!


Michelle Simmons said...

oooh... glad you're having fun in Flagstaff! Awesome place! And Sedona is incredible too... Enjoy your weekend! :)

San said...

Ah, sounds great. Would love to be there too.

Have a great time.

ADC said...

Lovely photos. America is so beautiful. Have fun at Grand Canyon and enjoy every minute of it.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful photography!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful photography!

Beth said...

Oh my gosh - how awesome!! So glad you two could get away together!! And I love the pictures - not like any scenery we have here in PA! Enjoy the Grand Canyon and the rest of your trip!!

Rebecca DeWire said...

What great pics! Getting away from it all sounds great. Glad to hear you are having fun.

Midwestern Dot said...

Good for you for getting away! I hope it is as fun as it sounds.
Britney has the exact same picture as you do (the first picture in the car mirror), I love that picture!

Jennifer Harrison said...

YAY! Pics look awesome and glad you are having a great time, Marit! And the Grand Canyon, can't wait to read about it. We are taking the kids in NOvember and we cannot wait!!

Kim Schafer said...

Awesome!!!! I love the pictures and am so excited for you guys that you're away on a fun roadtrip! Yay!!! Can't wait to hear about your Grand Canyon adventures! Such a beautiful place. And Sedona too! We did a similar trip in 2006. Have a great time! And many safe travels and hikes to you both!!!!!

Nicole @ Geek Turned Athlete said...

I love Flagstaff! You are so lucky that you got to hike around that area.

The Grand Canyon is freaking amazing. It is hard to believe I hiked about 21 miles in it with KEDS when I was in 8th grade. What was I thinking?

have fun!!

Melissa said...

Nice pictures! I really like the one of the burned tree bark, and the view driving down I-10.

So jealous of the beer sampler, yummy!

Pedergraham said...

Awesome photos. I agree with Melissa on the burned one. I am glad that you are having fun and that beer sampler looks so yummy.

cherelli said...

What beautiful country - and inspiring views! looking forward to your Grand Canyon pics, would love to go there some day!

Teresa said...

Wow! So many fun adventures! Expoler on...and keep us posted on the fun!

Runner Leana said...

Have a fantastic trip!!! Beer samplers....yummy!

Shachi said...

wow - glad you are enjoying the outdoors in this gorgeous weather! I can't wait for such a vacation myself - and it's too far away :)

GoBigGreen said...

My sister is at the GC thru the weekend! Give a yell for the MBC and see if she pops around a corner. Hee

Aimee (I Tri To Be Me) said...

It looks like you guys are having a great time! I used to live in Flagstaff when I went to NAU for a year. My husband and I actually hiked and camped on Mt. Humphreys. Your post just totally brought back a ton of happy memories! The pictures are amazing...keep them coming! :)

Mer! said...

AHH!! You're blogging on vacay! LOVE IT!!! LOVE these pics Marit!! You guys are adorable!! So glad you guys are having fun (can I add anymore exclamation points??) =0.

This litearlly made me smile.....AND the beer sampler!!

SO glad you guys are enjoying it!

Have a blast in Sedona---it's just peaceful!!