Happy trails

by Jennifer on January 7, 2009

Confession time.

We’ve lived in Arizona for almost four and a half years, and I haven’t gone hiking here.

There are sound excuses reasons for that – hiking alone isn’t recommended, so I don’t. We have things here like rattlesnakes and mountain lions that could make the experience pretty exciting, and there’s always the chance of twisting an ankle or being cornered by a pack of javelina.

(Don’t laugh. They’re freaky-looking bastards.)

So, why haven’t we gone as a family? (Yeah, I heard you thinking it…) Who knows. We talked about it sometimes?

It’s embarrassing, really, that with all the miles and miles of trails around here, that we haven’t used them.

I decided to do something about it, though, and asked a friend if she would start hiking with me a couple of days a week. She said yes, immediately (whew), and our first hike is today.

If no one hears from me by the end of the day, and if it’s not a lot of trouble, could you call Search and Rescue?

Or find us on your own and scare off the javelina. I’ll owe you.


UPDATE: We had a great hike – with only a couple of near-death experiences.

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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

JCK January 8, 2009 at 12:54 am

Oh, that’s a great idea! The hiking. Not the search & rescue. Now, when you move you can say that you went hiking in the area. Good for you! You ARE excited about moving. :0

anymommy January 8, 2009 at 2:29 am

I do all my best thinking when I walk! Have fun, hope you love it.

jenrantsraves January 8, 2009 at 6:04 am

WHAT THE HELL?!? I had no idea what a javelina was. When I clicked on it, I wasn’t sure if I should laugh or scream! What a bizarre creature!

Jennifer Harvey January 8, 2009 at 6:17 am

Jen – my friend goes walking with her dogs early in the mornings and sees them in our neighborhood. I haven’t seen one yet, except as roadkill a couple of times. You’re right…they’re bizarre looking. (A side note: there’s a children’s book that’s popular here, about javelina, titled “Don’t Call Me a Pig!” It’s pretty cute.)

Eric Daniel Self January 8, 2009 at 8:21 am

Those javelina’s look like they’d make good bacon and chops to me.

Madge January 8, 2009 at 11:12 am

what is this hiking thing you are talking about? do you have to do it outside? i thought javelina was the new hot cocktail? why are you afriad of that?

Daryl January 8, 2009 at 11:20 am

Be brave and take pix!

Em January 8, 2009 at 2:51 pm

The Hubs and his college roommate used to hunt for javelina – I’ve seen one up close, but thankfully it was very dead.

The smell. Oh the smell. And no, they ain’t good eatin’. Just mean bastards. They would hunt them to keep them from killing the calfs on the ranch. (East Texas – yeehaa.)

It’s now Thursday afternoon. You better post soon, or I’m calling the cops.

Bruce January 8, 2009 at 3:04 pm

While I can’t really sing the praises of the Phoenix / Metro area, I have been to the top of the San Francisco Peaks and I have hiked the Grand Canyon several times, so you really need to start playing catch up here. The dangers along the trail are over-rated, since almost all trails in Arizona have cell phone coverage….just take your cellular if you need to call for help.

On a more practical hike, try the Dreamy Draw Preserve and Squaw Peak or Camelback Mountain. There are so many folks hiking those trials you will never really be alone…..and someone will find you if a boulder falls ontop of you.

Just take plenty of water…..

Jennifer Harvey January 8, 2009 at 3:21 pm

Present and accounted for, Em! 🙂

Thanks for the suggestions, Bruce. We saw a couple of people on the trail when we got there, but the traffic picked up by 8:45 or 9. I’m thinking I might be all right alone if I time it right. I forgot to try my cell while we were up there, but will next time. (And I took plenty of water!)

Mrs. G. January 8, 2009 at 4:38 pm

I hope you enjoy it. Good scheduling of friend time too.

the mama bird diaries January 8, 2009 at 10:23 pm

When I used to go hiking in Montana, we brought bear spray. What do you do to fight off the rattlesnakes and mountain lions?

flutter January 8, 2009 at 10:56 pm

I told you the story about the javelina chasing us around the outlaw’s house in Sedona, didn’t I?

Carolyn January 9, 2009 at 12:59 am

What effing planet do I live on? I’ve never even heard of a Javelina and I watch aminal shows with Csilla almost every day. That would keep me away from a hike any day.

(Well, that, and I’m the laziest b!tch ever…)

Green Girl January 9, 2009 at 8:18 am

Having lived a while in Wyoming, I can appreciate the fact that you are hiking in pretty dangerous turf. It’s lovely, but full of peril. You are NOT a wuss.

Jenn @ Juggling Life January 9, 2009 at 12:25 pm

Oh, I know exactly what you’re talking about. My coming Monday post is my running thoughts as I my son and hiked all alone in our local, mountain lion infested mountains.

Still, it is good to make yourself do it. Good for you.

David January 9, 2009 at 3:43 pm

I think the javelina looks much scarier because the angle of the photo makes him seem approximately 48 feet tall.

EWian January 9, 2009 at 4:53 pm

Hi, a grate way of get the family hiking is to play tourist in you own state.

I am giving you the “Lovely Blog Award” you can read more about it here in my blog: http://ewian.blogspot.com/2009/01/lovely-blog-award.html


Ree January 9, 2009 at 5:44 pm

I can’t argue with you. Those are freaky looking creatures. 😉

Glad you made it back safe and sound. Take heart that the midwest has no javelinas.

Ann January 13, 2009 at 12:30 pm

I’m so proud of you :)!!! I love hiking, we live right by the trails. I do hike alone and I have an ankle I.D. thingy and I sometimes carry my cell as well.

I have only seen a rattler once in 4 years, and I saw some javelinas while I was w/ my hubby – they are very scared of humans and will run away….well…generally, I suppose! Have you ever seen a baby javelina? O.M.G. – cutest thing EVER, seriously!

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