My favorite hike in my favorite park is the Mesquite Canyon Trail in the White Tank Mountains Regional Park. It’s not a long drive to get there either, only about 20 minutes or so. In the last few years, I’ve settled into a pattern of 4 miles (6.4 km) or so, not to exceed 5 miles. Part of the reason is that my wife, Lynn, was starting to have hip and knee issues, eventually to the point where she ended up getting a hip replacement this summer. She’s still recovering from the stress of the surgery and is walking more, but is not yet capable of long hikes.
In the last year or so, our hiking club has picked up some additional hike leaders, most of whom are more comfortable on longer hikes. That has inspired me to increase my hiking distance again. On December 13, the hike leader scheduled a hike from Mesquite Canyon to Willow Canyon, to the canyon wash and back, a published 5.7 mile (9.1 km) hike. As it turned out, the hike ended up being 6.2 miles (10 km) according to two GPS tracking systems. Seems the park maps aren’t quite accurate. I’d hiked this route in 2017, except I turned back prior to getting to the wash, tracking a total of 5.5 miles, one of my longer hikes in the last few years. In fact, checking my hiking log, this hike is the longest I’ve made since 2014. Lynn still has some PT and recovery to complete before she can join us again on the trails. I am looking forward to us doing some shorter hikes, just her and me, to help her get back into condition to rejoin the group.
About this photo: The Willow Canyon Trail has a couple of “rock bridges” that are built along the relatively steep canyon wall. The bridge creates a narrow ledge that extends the trail over a dropoff that would have otherwise had to either end the trail or create a section requiring a descent and climb to the other side. One of our hike leaders volunteers for the park conservancy. She asked one of the rangers who believes the ledges were constructed in the last 10 years or so. The image, captured with my Samsung S7 cellphone, features a portion of our group crossing the bridge. The rule for Cellpic Sunday is simple. The image must be captured with a mobile device.