Sunday, August 26, 2012

West Fork of Oak Creek 8/2012

I haven't done much of anything since it got hot this year. And it got hot early. I can't stand to be out in the 100 plus heat.
Cindy and I are finally planning a hike all the way through Aravaipa, the end of October. It's 12.5 miles. I decided I needed to start doing something so I could make that one. It's still hot here in Phoenix, so I drafted some friend to come with me to the West Fork of Oak Creek. I figured if we left Phoenix at 5:30AM, we could get to the trail head by 8am when they open and it would be cool.
That part of the plan worked perfectly. We got there just at the right time and it was 59 degrees when we arrived. It was wonderful.

 We have had a great monsoon season this year and even the desert is green. It was lush, damp and cool in the early hours. Lots of water in the creek and even little springs and waterfalls trickling down over the rocks. Lots of beautiful wildflowers.
 It was fun bringing Abby along with Cindy and I. She had never been out of Phoenix in the 8 months she had been there. She really enjoyed the scenery.
 There are 13 water crossings to the end of the trail, which means you cross the creek 26 times on a round trip. Here is Abby negotiating one.

 Here I am on the way out. I did fine, except getting winded on the uphills. That was pretty much what I expected after being a lump all summer.
 This is where the trail ends. You can go farther if you are willing to swim and rock climb. This is as far as we wanted to go. This is the LDS scout troop that leag frogged us several times on the way out. It was amazing to see the boys bound down over rocks with the elasticiity of joint and sureness of foot of 12 year old boy. I so don't have that. I have to be careful where I put every step. As a matter of fact, at the end of the trip out, I realized I was more tired than I thought I would be. I was slower and clumsier on the way back. On one water crossing, Abby warned be about a loose rock. I decided, rather than step on the loose rock, I would step on the big flat rock that was just under the water. It looked more stable. Unfortunately it was also very slick with moss. I went all the way down into the water. I also got my beloved camera wet. It's not working anymore. I am going to have to see about getting it fixed.
I was a mess after the fall, mossy knees, squelching feet, dripping. A pretty terrifying site. And even slower. I was a little concerned about even making it all the way back to the car.
 Abby and Cindy at the end, before starting back the way we came.
I made it, obviously, but am really, really, really sore , last night and today. I have a lot of work to do if I think I am going to do the Aravaipa through hike in one day!

1 comment:

The White Silk Purse (Dana) said...

What lovely photos!

I'm very sorry about your camera and your fall! Some things are not fun about getting older....