Mar 20

Snow hike near A1 Mountain

Category: Arizona

Flagstaff is so cool.  I’ll often drive around and see scenes like this.  That’s the San Francisco Peaks, and on the left is A1 mountain.  Both are volcanoes.

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Since almost all of the land is national forest, which has nonrestrictive regulations about land use, I can simply find a place to park, get out, and walk into the woods! I drove up a forest road until I reached a place covered with snow and the road was closed.

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I didn’t have snowshoes in the car, which would have helped a lot.  At least I had my gaiters, which made all the difference, but it was still tough going.  Every 10th footfall sank 3 feet into the snow.  I just chose a compass heading, looked at a map, and walked for a couple of miles.

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No other people were present and I heard almost no human noise – just the crunch of snow under my feet. When I stopped to drink or look at the compass, it was starkly silent unless the wind was blowing.  Air temperature today: around 60 when I started!  I saw a coyote and plenty of woodpeckers, as well as an owl or hawk in the distance.

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I used my hiking pole as a monopod (it has a camera mount under the handle) to get these images with a cool little digital camera that Holly gave to me.  I don’t usually take images of myself, maybe I should now and then.  That’s the San Francisco peaks in the background.

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