After the big day..the AZ CORE Fitness crew headed up Camleback Mountain (Echo canyon) to work off the turkey & dessert. Since it was the day after Thanksgiving I knew it would be busy; the mountain preserves are a big draw in November when the rest of the country is usually dealing with snow & ice. I opted for a 6am start..yes, it was dark. Parking, which can be a huge issue at the trailhead, wasn't a problem..did I mention it was dark. We put our headlamps on and started up the mountain. It is really peaceful hiking with the sun just starting to illuminate the sky. We made it to the spot where Jim & Scott remembered the railing that is embedded in rock so you don't lose your footing and slide down the steep section.
The trail is just over a mile long and goes up to 2,700 ft. I know the trail well as I used to climb it at least once a week with a dear friend, rain or shine, in the dead of summer and when the dashboard on my car showed the little snowflake symbol letting me know it was very chilly outside. It's amazing that there is incredible hiking right in the middle of one of the largest cities in the United States, Phoenix.
Fueled by all the food consumed at Thanksgiving, we made it to the top to see a gorgeous sunrise and even did a little Foundation Training. There's nothing quite like a Founder, at dawn, on the top of a mountain.
After my first trek doing Rim to Rim in the Grand Canyon nearly 9yrs ago I thought I would do a little training for the following year. The consistancy of doing that hike 51 weeks in a row proved to be a great way to prepare for one of my favorite hikes.There is something incredibly special about being down in the Grand Canyon where you can completely unplug and immerse yourself in beauty of nature. If you haven't hiked the Grand Canyon or Camelback mountain I highly recommed both!
The shadow of Camelback mountain on Phoenix Mountain Preserve was something I'd never seen before. There is always something new to be learned or experienced if you take the time to look. Get out there and enjoy!