Mount Ord. This peak is the second highest mountain in the Mazatzal Range of central Arizona. After a quick trip from home, we reached our goal. The road from the bottom takes you from the plants of the Sonoran desert to a deciduous forest of oaks. It is a rough dirt road that jostled us along the way. The ascent was a bit scary since the road is narrow, and the edge drops precipitously into the valley floor. I must admit I was a bit white knuckled during parts of it, but Dave handled it like a pro. When the road ended, we still had a bit of trail to go before the top. We walked the remaining 3/4 mile and were rewarded by an amazing view. We could see Four Peaks and Roosevelt Lake. There were many radio towers on the top as well as a fire tower. The kiddos were disappointed that we couldn't climb to the top of the tower. They are hoping we can return sometime when a ranger is present who will take us to the top. The temperatures at the top of the peak were much cooler than home in the Phoenix valley. The temperature dropped over 25 degrees. As we walked down to our car, the kiddos all wished they had jackets. Not a normal occurrence at the end of May in central Arizona.
On Sunday, Dave and I woke up early to take a more arduous hike by ourselves. We set out before anyone else was awake to hike to Tom's Thumb in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve. With the kiddos safe under grandma's watchful eye, we enjoyed a 5.5 mile hike. The initial mile and a half was a bit tough as we made our ascent. The trail eventually leveled out a bit, so our huffing and puffing eased. The views were gorgeous. We stopped at the end of the Lookout Trail for apples, water and some conversation. We watched a few hummingbirds stop among the cacti as well as a plane flying low between the hills. Our trip down went much more quickly. Dave spotted a snake curled up near the path among the rock crevices. We didn't stick around to determine what type of snake it was. After only a few hours we were back home to enjoy the end of breakfast with the family.