November 9, 2011

my daily hike

So now that it is a bit cooler, I try and get out and hike/run the Lake Overlook Trail in Fountain Hills.  
It is about a mile from my house to the trail and then 1.17 miles around, so I am getting over three miles in.

The seasons bring great change here. These pictures reflect early fall, after a long hot summer.  Things are a bit dry, so don't smoke and please don't litter.

First off is the gear.  
This is a well maintained path, so long pants are not required.  Wear something comfortable, obviously suited to the weather and time of day.  I usually do this in the morning, when it is nice and cool.
Make sure and wear a good pair of shoes, this is no place for sandles.  Also it should go with out saying to bring some water.

My favorite shoes: 

All dressed and ready to go.  Normally I have a single waist bottle holder, but since I was taking pictures I brought along my running pack/camera holder.  In the spot where the water bottle normally sits, I place my camera.  It fits perfectly there and even has a strap across the top to keep the camera in place, just in case. An additional insulated water sleeve keeps my water in place and cool.  

For this adventure I brought the 70-150mm Vivitar with 2x adapter attached to my NEX-3.  

The trail itself starts at the corner of Saguaro and Palisades.  By this point I have already gone over a mile to get here from my house.  

You will walk through a small wash and climb out  The path  heads North away from the lake towards East La Montana Drive. 
  Here you cross the road and walk East up the road to resume the path.
Finally you will start getting away a bit.  Don't worry, you won't get lost as long as you can see the signs and the path is well laid out.

You are never really that far away from town, but you feel like it.  Along the way you will see various critters and fellow hikers. Morning/Evening is the best time to see things moving around.

There are a lot of cactus along your path, along with other plants to brighten up your day.

Of course the views are outstanding.

They get even better once you reach the top.  Take a break provided by the benches devoted to various individuals that are up here and enjoy the views.

Looking East across the Indian Reservation.

Looking West towards the Fountain Park

Then you get to climb back down literally through people's back yards.

Be careful of the really ferocious critters that inhabit down here.

Finally you will come out upon the east parking lot of the Fountain Hills park.  I still have to walk home, but that is another story.

Hopefully you are not as exhausted as this cactus seems to be.