Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Tackling Trail 100

For those of you familiar with Phoenix, picture the area of Shea and Tatem. Got it?
Now, picture Peoria and 7th avenues. Got that, too?
We hiked from the first spot to the second spot on Sunday.
For those of you who are not familiar with the Phoenix area, this is the trail we did:

Only we didn't stop at 7th Street. No, no. We crossed under 7th Street and went another mile and a half to 7th Ave, for a total of 11 miles.
The Phoenix Mountain Preserve’s Christiansen Memorial Trail is not a loop trail, like all the other hikes Kelly and I have conquered. This one starts on one side of the city and winds through the Phoenix Mountain Preserve, and dumps you off on the other side of the city.
So I dropped my car off at 7th and Peoria avenues on Sunday morning and hopped into Kelly’s car to drive to the trailhead. About 15 minutes into the drive, Kelly sighed.
“Um,” she said. “This is a long drive.”
“Yeah, this does not bode well,” I sighed back.
We knew it was going to be a long one. But we didn’t know how much we were going to love it.
The first part of the trail was very green (an adjective rarely used to describe trails in the desert):

To cross major freeways and roads that cut through the preserve, we ventured through several tunnels like this:

We got to stop about 4 miles into the trek to eat lunch at this rest area, with actual picnic tables:

Plus, hiking past four mountains (Piestewa, Lookout, North and Shaw Butte) that we had already climbed during our training was just plain cool.
Oh, and neither of us was sore the next day. Victory!

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