Birthday hike Nov 2021

Titans

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After 27 on and off nights in the tent, the evenings & nights started to get a bit long end of November! As a Colorado campground neighbor said: “Im reading for hours it seems, check the clock and it’s only 6:50 pm…, it’s just a long night!”. So armed with the keys to our friend’s place we went south for a week of comfort, exceptional amenities and some fresh food. That was Thanksgiving week and the town was incredible busy. On Thanksgiving day and Rick’ birthday we elected to hike a nice loop with great views instead of cooking a Turkey!

Most mornings started with the view of the balloons. But Thanksgiving morning it was super windy, so the photo is from one of the other days.

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Its most quiet on those double black diamond trails… so that’s what we did. Notice the tire marks headed straight for the prickly pear.
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Rick loved these birthday views
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We have taken this photo any times, lovely views
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Tiny green ferns and agave together, precious spot!
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And then this, @scatman ’s dream sign, no e-bikes.
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stepping aside for a biker on the easiest piece of trail
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agave and prickly pear
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backlit Ocotillo
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That is likely suppose to be a warning, sign says nothing, but it’s the start of the double black
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Not particular steep but every square inch of slick rock is covered in sand, so for hikers there is zero traction
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There’s much more of the double black trail stuff, we forgot how long that section was. Much further down it got very (!) busy, families out hiking before eating Turkey. Everyone was happy and in a good mood, very noticeable that day. And how could you be grumpy on a nice day like that!

This is usually a scene with stellar reflections, but not that day. Still we saw some left over fall color along the creek. And I almost forgot, Rick got a dollar from a guy on his birthday and was told to pass it on! Old tradition of this guy’s grandma, she gave strangers a dollar on their birthday.

Rick taking photo of the remaining fall color.
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Nice creek and it was breezy again
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Usually stellar reflections here, but just a little that day
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Birthday boy on trail
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And then it got nuts. Hundreds of trails all over town and everyone is up there…. ? :rolleyes:
We bypassed this quickly and continued on.
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When we returned the TH was so crowded…. Quite the difference as compared to returning from our desert wanderings in southern Utah! We drove back and inspired by @Jackson we cooked some salmon for Thanksgiving dinner. And a fancy whole grain mix with some birthday Prosecco, it was all very tasty after so much dry food!

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We really missed being with our Denver friends as usual for Thanksgiving, but we had a nice day and Rick enjoyed his birthday!
 

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Great way to spend a birthday and Thanksgiving. I really missed not being in Southern Utah for the holiday. Our inside cat passed away earlier this year and we made the decision after labor day to bring in 3 outdoor cats that we had been taking care of since 2 of them were born 5 years ago. We decided it was a bit too early to leave them alone.

We were able to make it to City of Rocks a couple days after Thanksgiving, but it just wasn't the same.
 
The close-up ocotillo photo is fabulous - please pass along my compliments!
 
A report with photos that also includes food! Even better! Definitely a good Thanksgiving.
Have to tell Rick a very belated Happy Birthday.

That Rock was crawling with people when I was there too. I am sure it is all the time. At the trailhead proper for said Rock, we luckily parked in the very first spot as someone left, but there were way too many people so we moved elsewhere for the one hike that we thought my dad could do without pushing him too far (he was not feeling so good).
I wanted to go and do some of the other trails from that trailhead, but I was woefully unprepared for which trail was what! Next time.
 
Love it! Awesome shots, and I'm glad the entire hike wasn't full of people. Great call on the salmon as well!
 
Great way to spend a birthday and Thanksgiving. I really missed not being in Southern Utah for the holiday. Our inside cat passed away earlier this year and we made the decision after labor day to bring in 3 outdoor cats that we had been taking care of since 2 of them were born 5 years ago. We decided it was a bit too early to leave them alone.

We were able to make it to City of Rocks a couple days after Thanksgiving, but it just wasn't the same.

So sorry to hear about your cat @swmalone , very sad. Good idea to bring the others inside, though they likely won’t agree at all with that “terrible” human idea, as there’s little to chase inside. Outdoor cats just don’t live as long IMO. We had the neighbors outdoor/indoor cat move in with us, long story. She made up her mind, nothing anyone could do about it. I grew up with dogs, but it didn’t take long before we were hooked. They are so much fun! Sadly she passed young a few years ago. You are likely extending their life by taking them inside your house. Want to share any photos of them looking out the window at their previous fun outdoor life?

I can imagine you missed southern Utah! Hope you make it back soon :cool:
 
A report with photos that also includes food! Even better! Definitely a good Thanksgiving.
Have to tell Rick a very belated Happy Birthday.

That Rock was crawling with people when I was there too. I am sure it is all the time. At the trailhead proper for said Rock, we luckily parked in the very first spot as someone left, but there were way too many people so we moved elsewhere for the one hike that we thought my dad could do without pushing him too far (he was not feeling so good).
I wanted to go and do some of the other trails from that trailhead, but I was woefully unprepared for which trail was what! Next time.

So many trails here. Yesterday we did short hike and the trail wasn’t even on the TH sign/map, only on the paper map Rick purchased this summer. It also wasn’t on any map layer I had on Gaia. That’s a real good way of ensuring you don’t meet anyone :roflmao:. We only met 4 horses and 1 very well behaved dog on the lower section of that little loop. But we had fabulous views, so that was all a pleasant surprise.
 
Love it! Awesome shots, and I'm glad the entire hike wasn't full of people. Great call on the salmon as well!

Thanks @Jackson ! And I appreciate the Salmon inspiration, we loved it. Rick is off getting another piece now, ha…before we are head out tent camping with more dry food.
 
I’m drooling over that chocolate cake and fruit combo … looks delicious!
 
Hot air balloons are second only to mules in making an excellent trip report @Titans . :) That salmon looks mighty appetizing. You and @Ugly are making me hungry lately. If I end up putting on the pounds, I will know that you two are to blame. :D

I see that they are giving a $900.00 tax credit in the infrastructure bill for purchasing an e-bike. Soon they will be taking over like the spurge! :eek: :)

Wish Rick a belated birthday from the Scatman. :scatman:
 
I’m drooling over that chocolate cake and fruit combo … looks delicious!

Ha… that Chocolate cake looked better than it tasted! But we also bought some other mini cakes and they tasted exceptional (think some almond paste it in, fruit). And 1/2 of a little cake is plenty per person.

Think this was the evening prior, roasted left over veggies, a big upgrade after eating plenty of dry food for two months. I forgot to cook some carb, oops. Think that was also the evening I wanted to soften the ice cream for 15 seconds and it went for 1.5 minutes. :roflmao:
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The biggest hit on this trip has actually been this salad mix with extra raw asparagus…. But anything tastes great after many nights of dry food!
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Hot air balloons are second only to mules in making an excellent trip report @Titans . :) That salmon looks mighty appetizing. You and @Ugly are making me hungry lately. If I end up putting on the pounds, I will know that you two are to blame. :D

I see that they are giving a $900.00 tax credit in the infrastructure bill for purchasing an e-bike. Soon they will be taking over like the spurge! :eek: :)

Wish Rick a belated birthday from the Scatman. :scatman:

Seriously? They should give a credit for buying a regular bike, so people stay fit and in shape! Or a credit for buying a tent for backpacking. We saw a couple biking through Zion canyon. He was on a regular bike, she was behind and made no effort to bike on a flat piece of road, funny to watch. Yes, think you’re right, they will take over like spurge.

@Ugly and I cannot be blamed for you putting on pounds, unless we actually cook for you! :roflmao: Think @Ugly will be in charge of some BBQ for us one day….
Rick and I pretty soon need to cut back on the beer drinking and the cake/cookie eating, so we don’t continue that, when we get home. That’s what happened last year!

Yes, the balloons are super cool. Notice the full moon too….
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