Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Go take a Hike--or 2

I guess it is time to start and finish this post since it has been over a month it has been sitting in my 'post' box. But just to show that I have been doing something with my life I will go ahead and share my adventures hiking over the last little while. We will start with the 2nd hike (since my pics loaded in that order) and then go to the first one.

So my second hike was with my brother David and a few of his friends. We went to Gold Canyon. In the hills there is a trail that leads to some hieroglyphics. I have to say that it was a pretty easy hike and the view was just amazing. Once you get to the hieroglyphics there are some natural springs that flow into a few ponds. As you sit and admire centuries of art work you are at peace as you hear the waterfalls.

Picture of Allison and me. This was taken half way through the hike so do not judge us by the red faces and crazy hair. It was a little bit warmish that day with a slight breeze.

This picture is of one of the bigger 'ponds' there at the top of the trail. From there we continued on up the mountain even though the trail stopped at the springs and hieroglyphics. Of course the boys go trudging through the bushes, jumped over rocks, and have the idea to 'climb' to the top. Their dreams were dashed when the climb got a little harder and there seemed no way to really get all the way to the top. Plus a few of us girls were getting scratches all over (yes, a few drops of blood were shed but we survived). Picture below is of the crew.

(End of Hike #2)

My first official hike in the Superstition Mountains was awesome! I was a little apprehensive when I woke up to rain but the hike must go on. My hiking buddies were wonderful people I have met in my ward here in Chandler. I loved this hike because I was able to get to know people that I hadn't met yet and it was an awesome start to new friendships. To get our energy up we started our day at Ihop. Once we filled our tummies we were ready to start hiking. Our hike was at Ussery Pass. The hike was pretty easy. I did huff and puff towards the end but I say it was an enjoyable journey. We climbed to the 'caves' a.k.a. holes in the mountain.
Once we made it to the caves it was picture time. I think we spent the whole hour at the top taking pictures of this and that. There are many to share but here are a few for your enjoyment. First picture is of Ali and I holding up the mountain. We are super strong didn't ya know?

View from the top out over the Mesa/Phoenix area. If you look at the top of the picture it is a little dark; this was part of the storm that happened the day of the hike. Luckily it never 'rained' during our hike. But it did start to sprinkle towards the end so we hurried down the mountain. The last thing we wanted was to end up on the 6 o'clock news as 'stupid hikers washed down Ussery Pass'.

Just a fun picture. Yes I was a little nervous as we kept moving out over the edge to take pictures but it did make for a cool picture. In the picture is Sarah, Josh, me, and Sarah.

As I mentioned, it did start to sprinkle so we thought it was best to start down the mountain. On the way down, Ali and I were the Caboose. Wait not we were the detached caboose left out in the middle of no where. Of course it was partly our fault because we had to keep stopping to take pictures but we also stopped to check on a lady who had slipped. She was with her sons but we wanted to make sure she was okay. As we did our civic duty the rest of the crew continued down the mountain. Ali and I were fine but wanted to make sure we kept up with the rest of the group. There was no way to get lost because you only had to follow the trail. As we were finishing the hike 'by ourselves' and evil plan developed in our heads. We were going to fake a fall and make them all fill bad for leaving us behind. Oh yes, we faked the fall by actually rolling in the dirt, sticking twigs in our hair, making up an elaborate story of what happened, and hopped to the car pretending to have a broken ankle. I have to say I should have won on Oscar for the job I did. Several of the girls believed I was actually hurt. What they didn't know is that I was laughing so hard it looked like I was crying. A few of them were a little put back when I came running out of the bathroom to show I was okay but I think Ali and I learned who are 'true' friends were that day. j/k you all were great.

Well, there are the tales from the trails. Until next time...

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Is this rope safe??!?

You will just have to take my word because that is all the proof I have. (Camera was left in the car.) 2010 is turning out to be an interesting year because I have already jumped off a cliff. Its not what you think it is - all is well! And technically I carefully, inch by inch, eased my way over the edge with my trust in a rope. That's right, I went rapelling!

Rapelling is something I have always wanted to do but never had the opportunity. Luckily the invitation was extended to me, I accepted and went! The trip was nice and I got to meet some cool people. We went out by Salt River and the cliff was about 120 feet high. I was glad that it was only that high because when I first 'accidently' looked over the edge my heart definitely skipped a heart beat and my body said, "What the heck are you doing?" Ignoring my sanity, I continued inching my way over the edge hoping that my right hand would continue being the brake hand I needed it to be. With nerves and mind going crazy and the rope being heavier that I thought, I started letting the rope go through my hand hoping I would be able to brake. My fear came true; I was not really able to get my hand back behind me to brake. It was free fall from my first 'bounce' off the wall to the ground. I was freaking out because I was just falling down the rope. "Ahh, Ahh, stop it stop!" Just before a total break down began I saw land only inches below me. Once on the ground of sanity my legs collapsed and I was laying on my back. From there I screamed, "I did it!" I experienced personal triumph.

Would I do it again? Yes! And I did. I went for a second time just to prove that I could do it again. The story was the same but I was able to bounce twice off the wall this time. My brake worked a little bit better thank goodness. :) But I still lost my footing once on the ground again so I yelled again, "I did it" from my back. I wish I could have gone more but with so many people there was not much of a chance to go more than twice.

So let it be recorded that on the ninth day in the year two thousand ten as the day that I, Stephanie S. trusted a rope and rapelled down a rock...and enjoyed it! ;)