2015 Prescott Oktoberfest & Corvette Car Show Sunday, Sep 27 2015 

Oktoberfest Costumes

Oktoberfest Costumes

The weather was perfect for this year’s Oktoberfest celebration in Prescott. We were near the front of the line for entry at 1 p.m. on Gurley Street in front of the Courthouse Plaza. For $20 we received a commemorative pint glass and 10 tickets. One-fourth of the money was to support the Zeitz City (a Prescott sister city) Student Exchange. I enjoyed beers from Deschutes, Granite Mountain, Odell’s, and Prescott Brewing. We enjoyed polka music played on an accordion. Later the Los Guys Band was listed as headliners, although the musicians that played in Prescott don’t match their Facebook page. Some participants were appropriately attired.

Corvette Admirers

Corvette Admirers

The streets on the other three sides of the Courthouse Plaza were closed for the 9th Annual Corvette Car Show. The show displayed 267 corvettes dating from 1953 to the present. Exhibitors included the Chevrolet Division of General Motors, Bridgestone/Firestone Tire, Michelin Tire, and Goodyear Tire. This event raised money for the Prescott Firefighters Charities.

Thumb Butte West Sunday, Sep 27 2015 

Thumb Butte

Thumb Butte

Yesterday we hiked 2.9 miles clockwise on the following trails: Thumb Butte BypassTrail #326, Miller CreekTrail #367, Javelina Trail #332 (part of the Prescott Circle Trail), West Trail #318, and Pine Lakes Trail #316. This was our fourth hike on this year’s “Take a Hike!” which recommended traveling it counterclockwise. The elevation ranged from 5,725 feet to 6.020 feet. We enjoyed a good view of Granite Peak and the San Francisco Peaks. We encountered several walkers going counterclockwise while mountain bikers mainly passed us going clockwise. We have now completed half of the required hikes for this year’s “Take a Hike!”

Thumb Butte North Sunday, Sep 20 2015 

Thumb Butte

Thumb Butte

Today we hiked 1.7 miles counterclockwise on the following trails: Watertower Trail #315, Ridgetop Trail #317, and Pine Lakes Trail #316. The trailhead was adjacent to the host campsite and at an elevation of 5,690 feet. The high point had an elevation of 5,820 feet. We enjoyed several good views of Thumb Butte to the south and at one point an expansive northern vista. We encountered several walkers and a few joggers. This was our third hike on this year’s “Take a Hike!”

Goldwater West Sunday, Sep 20 2015 

Goldwater Lake Trail

Goldwater Lake Trail

Our 3.2 mile loop hike yesterday took us clockwise on the following trails: Goldwater Lake Trail #396 from the parking lot near the White Spar Campground, Hidden Valley Trail #374, Banning Creek Trail #81, and returning on the Old Schoolhouse Gulch Road #67. The trailhead was at an elevation of 5,620 feet and rose to 5,930 feet. The Goldwater Lake Trail is part of the Prescott Circle Trail. We met a few mountain bikers as we wound through the pines. Two motorized bikes passed us on the Old Schoolhouse Gulch Road near where an older woman was sitting on the trail taking closeup photographs of wildflowers. This was our second hike as part of this year’s “Take a Hike!”

Whitehorse Lake Campground Sunday, Sep 13 2015 

Whitehorse Lake

Whitehorse Lake

Spending three nights at Whitehorse Lake Campground gave us the opportunity to try “dry” camping in our new Winnebago Via 25T. To get to the campground required traveling 10 miles on a dirt washboard road. The driver’s side view mirror jangled loose and was of no use the rest of the trip. Before leaving we filled the 28 gallon water tank. Somehow we used all of that water and needed to use a six gallon container to add water (three times) before trying out the shower. We used the house batteries for lights and TV. Although I didn’t have cell coverage, we were able to received several TV channels. We used the generator when we wanted to use the microwave and a plug for coffee. We need to learn more about the inverter and how to use it. As we departed, we used the dump to empty our black water and gray water tanks.

Our campsite in B26 put us adjacent to the lake. There were a few other campers, but no one on top of us. We hiked the Whitehorse Lake Trail #33 in both directions. The Forest Service has posted two signs for the Whitehorse Trail, however, they are reversed. Someone didn’t look carefully at what they were doing. On the second hike we followed the Nature Trail, learning at each of the 12 sign posts.  The next day we hiked the Whitehorse Trail #33 to sign #9 on the Nature Trail where we followed the Canyon Overlook Trail #70 for 1.25 miles for views of Sycamore Canyon. We passed two groups of three. One group had a young daughter whose stroller we had passed near the trailhead and another group had a dog. We passed though a meadow with four cattle who eyed us closely. In another section of trail we observed in the distance two deer before they scampered into the woods. On our return trip we spotted a large yellow spotted egg that may have been from a wild turkey. Back in camp I discovered a small cream colored snake outside the door of the nearest outhouse. It may have been a groundsnake. It has been some time since I’ve been without the Internet for three days. We filled our time reading, playing cribbage, and watching college football games. My wife did an excellent job planning our meals. We made use of a small barbecue grill after we spent some time putting it together. Another three night trip was good, but I will need to adjust if we decide to travel on longer trips in our RV.

Acker Park Monday, Sep 7 2015 

Granite Mountain from Acker Park

Granite Mountain from Acker Park

This year’s “Take a Hike!” officially started on Saturday. On Labor Day we decided to return to the J. S. Acker Park for our first hike. We previously hiked here in February 2014. In addition to the main loop of Hilltop and Ridge, we did a side trip down Hillcrest and returned via Eastwood. The formal name for the trail system is the “Barrie Mayes Memorial Trail System.” We had nice views of Thumb Butte and Granite Mountain. The San Francisco Peaks can also be seen behind the Prescott Resort.  This 80-acre park was established by citizen vote on September 26, 1995. A sign invited all to attend a 20th birthday party from 8 a.m. to noon on this coming September 26th. The Friends of JS Acker are throwing the party and giving a gift to each participant. The trailhead elevation is 5,40 feet and the highest elevation is 5,600 feet. This pleasant trail in the center of Prescott has a number of thoughtful quotes. I will leave you with this one by John Muir: “Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their freshness into you … while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.”

Next Page »