I must be “cursed” by Mt Humphrey, the highest peak in AZ. Last time I was sick with high altitude (12,633 ft) and “sleepwalked” up the mountain (Post #212). This time was even worse.
I had a stomach ache the day before and still felt my stomach churning in the morning. Since both Libby and Phil were going, I didn’t want to change our plan because of me. As soon as we started hiking, I knew something was wrong. I had low energy. Libby wasn’t in any better shape. With her Vertigo (due to a head injury when she was on duty), she felt dizzy all along the way. Still, neither of us said a word to turn back. We kept going, slowly.
It was very slow. It took us 6 hours to hike 5 miles with 3400ft elevation gain.
I thought coming down would be faster. Well, by then I had no energy left. My whole body ached, and I was chilled. Clearly I had a fever. All I wanted to do was to lie down and fall asleep. Libby wasn’t doing any better. She slipped and fell half a dozen times, fracturing her tailbone.
It took us another 5 hours to hike back. I fell asleep as soon as I was in the car.
The only funny part was, even both Libby and I were in terrible shapes, we perked up whenever we saw mushrooms. We picked 12 pounds, and poor Phil had to carry them.
The next day I had a fever up to 101.7F, and even after four days’ rest, I still had a fever that comes and goes.
Petroglyph National Monument stretches almost twenty miles along Albuquerque, New Mexico. It protects one of the largest petroglyph sites in the U.S. I only had time to hike one trail—Rinconada Canyon, which offers 300 petroglyphs. Here are samples of the large collection there.
Gold Butte is a National Monument located in the northeast of Las Vegas. It protects 300,000 acres of desert landscapes. President Obama designated the area as a National Monument in December 2016.
I heard about this area years ago before it became a NM. In fact, I’ve tried to hike in the area but gave up since there was no sign, no trail, nobody around to ask information.
Even now, it is still a remote area. Libby and I drove as far as we could in her Prius and had to park by the side of the road to hike about four miles (one way) to Little Finland.
I’ve seen pictures of Little Finland online, and I was eager to see it with my own eyes. I’m glad we were so determined to explore the area. It turned out to be as fabulous as I imagined. There are petroglyphs and intriguing rock formations. We spent a long day and still didn’t want to leave.
This concludes my Las Vegas trip.
I had never thought Arizona is a good place for bird-watch until I lived in Sedona. There are a lot of birds in the area; some are very pretty. I’ve seen quite a few even in my backyard.
Honestly speaking, Grand Canyon isn’t my favorite NP. I’ve visited several times and posted it before (#246). However, since it was a “free National Park day”, Libby and I decided to take the advantage. It was a beautiful day. We hiked along the rim for six hours, and this time, I had my own pictures to show. 🙂
(If you look closely, you will find ravens in the background)
I didn’t take any picture of Steamboat until the last day. The sunset was lovely. And to add icing to the cake, we saw a moose not far away from us. Libby was very emotional. She was afraid of moose from the horrible story she had heard. But this moose was very calm and he didn’t seem threatening at all. The brief encounter unexpectedly helped her to overcome her fear. Wildlife tend to leave us alone, if we leave them alone. Most accidences happened when human beings intentionally provoked them.
I’ve been to Rocky Mountain many times. If fact, the very first National Park I’ve ever visited is Rocky Mountain. Although it is not the top NP on my list, it is still special to me.
The park is only two hours away from Steamboat, so we took a day trip. The day started hazy. It became worse and worse. We had drizzle, rain, and hail. Still, we kept going. It was loud thunder that finally sent us running back. The rain was so cold that both of us were shivering. Nevertheless, our spirits were high, especially when we were fleeing from a not-so-happy deer. 🙂