Centennial Trail Revisited Friday, Jan 19 2018 

Centennial Trail

Centennial Trail

It’s been a few years since we hiked the entire length of the Centennial Trail. Today was a perfect day with temperatures in the low 60s and a deep blue sky. (My sympathy to friends in the Columbus, Ohio area who are enduring chilly winter weather). Our trail map from the City of Prescott says the trail length is 1.94 miles, but we calculated it at 2.3. The elevation ranges from a low of 5,447 feet to a high point of 5,729 feet. We parked on Westridge Drive and came out in the Enchanted Canyon development. When we last did this hike only a couple of houses had been built. Many more homes are now on this hilltop, although a few lots are still available. We took a quick tour of one of the luxury homes that recently sold for $890,000. Quite nice, although we prefer our deck and views. We returned to our vehicle via several connecting roads, admiring the homes along the way.

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Lake Havasu City, Arizona Tuesday, Jan 16 2018 

On our drive from Yuma to Lake Havasu City we encountered more than a hundred vintage Volkswagen buses. We learned that they had completed a three day festival in Lake Havasu City. We stayed at the Lake Havasu State Park in site 16 which is located on the beach adjacent to the beginning of the Mohave Sunset Trail. We walked this one-and-a-half mile shoreline trail to the remarkable London Bridge. On the way we passed two of they city’s miniature lighthouses, including the Vic Reyes Memorial Lighthouse. On our return we observed an egret.

Cattail Cove State Park

Cattail Cove State Park

On Martin Luther King Day we visited the 2,000 acre Cattail Cove State Park which is located about 15 miles south of Lake Havasu City. We hiked the 1.5 mile Whytes Retreat Trail along the lower portion of the Colorado River. We turned around at Whytes Retreat, one of the boat-in campsites provided by the Bureau of Land Management.

We also visited the 1,100 acre SARA (Special Activities and Recreation Area) county park which is located about five miles south of Lake Havasu City. We hiked on the red trail and joined the yellow trail in the Crack, an amazing slot canyon. We turned around when we encountered a spot that required descending a steep rock with the use of a rope. SARA offers interesting, popular hikes.

We visited the Mudshark Brewing Company where I tasted a flight of six beers including Scorpion Amber Ale, Morning Buzz Stout, Bandito Stout, Vanilla Caramel Porter, Mango Habanero IPA, and Abominable Winter Ale. I went outside to take a picture of a colorful sunset. We also enjoyed fine dining with a window view of the London Bridge at Shugrue’s. The prime rib and tournedos oscar went well with a bottle of “Cherry Pie” pinot noir.

Yuma, Arizona Saturday, Jan 13 2018 

Colorado River

Colorado River

Today we hiked the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail, part of the Yuma East Wetlands Restoration Project. Juan Bautista de Anza, the commander of the Royal Presidio of Tubac, developed a 1,000-mile route from present-day Sonora, Mexico to Alta, California. This trail celebrates the crossing of the Colorado River with the help of the Quechan people.

We parked at the Gateway Park below the Ocean to Ocean Bridge. Trains passed over it in both directions while we were there. “Art in the Park” was being set up for a noon opening. We departed for a walk around downtown Yuma and stopped for lunch at the Pint House. I tasted the following beers: Elysian Bifrost Winter Ale, Breckinridge Vanilla Porter, Iron First Uprising Tripel, Breakside Passion Fruit, Sante Fe Chicken Killer, and Hanger 24 Chocolate Bomber. We listened to music and discovered Jack Willis on his cornet taking requests a block away.

After a swim and hot tub experience in our Sun Vista RV Resort, we crossed the street for a “Surf’s Up” Beach Boys Tribute Band experience at the Palms Resort. The foursome includes brothers Donny and Danny Goldberg, their father Don Goldberg, and Denny Hardwick.

Our experience in Yuma on this visit gave us a new perspective on the Americans and Canadians who choose to spend the winter. It was interesting to get a taste of the social experience these visitors develop. Yuma also has a strong military presence and is a major winter vegetable producer.

Beach Boys Tribute Band

Beach Boys Tribute Band

Los Algodones, Mexico Friday, Jan 12 2018 

Border Fence

Border Fence

During our stay in Yuma, we visited Los Algodones, Mexico. There are numerous dentists and optometrists. During our walk around this border town, we encountered hawkers who spoke clear English with very friendly attitudes toward American visitors. The police and army presence made it clear that locals didn’t want any trouble. We enjoyed a good meal at Paradiso while enjoying live music. Although we didn’t buy from hawkers, we had some interesting encounters. Before we left, we visited a pharmacy where we bought one item for $10 that would cost $500 in the U. S. and another item that cost us $20 instead of $450. It will be interesting to see if they are the same.

International Wildlife Museum Wednesday, Jan 10 2018 

Wild Turkey

Wild Turkey

In 1988, C. J. McElroy, founder and chair emeritus of Safari Club International, created the International Wildlife Museum. The first exhibit within this museum celebrates the contributions of Theodore Roosevelt to conservation. In 1909, as Roosevelt’s presidential term ended he protected 230 million acres of land, created 5 National Parks, 18 National Monuments, and 150 National Forests. Then we learned about taxidermy, the technique used for the exhibits in this museum. Some of my favorite animals include African leopards, European wild boar, greater prairie chicken, Sichuan takin, wild turkey, emperor penguins, and Argali sheep. The collection includes some dramatic dioramas include a caribou and gray wolf. In the insect exhibit there was an interesting mention of “gynandromophy,” male and female halves in the same individual. This is an interesting Tucson museum.

Saguaro National Park Wednesday, Jan 10 2018 

Lime Kiln

Lime Kiln

Yesterday afternoon we visited the Rincon Mountain District of the Saguaro National Park. We had previously visited the Tucson Mountain District of this national park a couple of times. We watched an informative film at the Rincon Mountain Vistor Center before driving the eight-mile one-way Cactus Forest Drive through the Sonoran Desert. We hiked one mile to the Lime Kilns historic site on the Cactus Forest Trail. From about 1880 to 1920 lime was brought in and fires using wood from palo verde and mesquite was used to make quickline for the homes being built in Tucson. In 1920 a judge decided local ranchers had the right to the wood. This park has 130 miles of trail so we have plenty more to try in the future.

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