TRAVEL THERE: SCOTTSDALE’S GORGEOUS DESERT GARDEN
Just warning you! I’m going to rave about the beauties of the desert again. Here’s another warning. After looking at the map, I’m guess we lucked into arriving at the “Gateway to the McDowell Sonoran Preserve”, because the trail head had parking, potable water, restrooms and other facilities, while the map warns most of the other entrances have nothing. Sometimes the travel gods just love you!
Sightseers Not Hikers
Trying to locate the Desert Preserve, Bill found an open house he wanted to visit. We’d visited another open house earlier in the day, one that would be in our price range and confirmed Scottsdale was not an option for us. The open house close to the preserve as a million dollar beauty you’d get for closer to six hundred thousand here in the Dallas area. We were definitely just looking.
Arriving at the Preserve, it was immediately apparent we weren’t counted among the usual visitors. These folks took their hiking seriously. They had on hiking gear that made us look like the amateurs we were. They passed us without so much as a nod of the head or any offers to help people who obviously didn’t know where we were going or what we were doing. We took advantage of the facilities and then headed out on a stroll of our own.
We definitely didn’t have on the right shoes. There was a trail, but it wasn’t a nice smooth flat space. It was laced with deep cuts, from rain water (I suppose) and strewn with pebbles and good sized rocks. After we had gone maybe 50 yards we reevaluated our desire to hike. It was just about dusk and since we had no idea what we were doing, we decided to just take photos in the picturesque area we’d happened upon.
Of course, the first thing Bill wanted to do was get off the trail and get up close and personal with some of the unusual flora. Finally, a passing hiker took notice of us and let us know stepping off the trail was a not only a conservationist’s no-no, there was also a pretty strong chance we’d end up snakebit. I’m not sure why the hiker thought the snakes knew the difference between the trail and non-trail areas, but the vehemence of her warning about the fauna convinced Bill to get back on the not-quite straight, but certainly narrow trail.
Not a lot else went on. We took a lot of pictures, which I am happy to share with you and then we went back to our car. Considering our choices for dinner, we decided we wanted to take it easy and use the kitchenette in our casita. We found a grocery store and went for comfort food – pot pies. Back at the resort, we put on our comfy clothes and just vegged.
Now, while we take some down time, you enjoy the photos. I’ll see you next week for our road trip to Sedona.