Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Hiking in Mesa and the Dance Rally in Casa Grande

After getting back from Costa Rica, I got my rig out of storage and proceeded to find a place to sit for a few days to rest and recoup from my trip. I also needed to get some things done to my rig. When traveling it's easy to put off those mundane, but necessary things, such as rig and vehicle maintenance, medical check ups, dental checkups, etc. Well, while in Mesa, I got lots of those things done. But there was also time for some hiking, dancing and getting together for happy hour with friends.

One hike was Usary Mountain. It has been a warm winter out here and we saw some desert plants blooming which usually don't bloom until April. And it also brought out other denizons of the desert such as the rattlesnake. This guy below was only about 3 ft. long, but he was stretched out sunning just off the path. The first person in our party walked right on by without even seeing the snake. I yelled at the next person who watched for a minute, then breezed on by. The third person went past leaving only me to meander on past. I didn't like it, but the alternative was to be left behind or hike around, which meant more possibilities of meeting his big brother.

Rattlesnake on hiking path
But after 10 days I was ready to be moving again. So on to Casa Grande and the Pinal County Fairgrounds for the WIN dance rally. The theme was Route 66 and the decorations were grand. The main dance hall had murals all the way around with Rt. 66 winding its way across from Chicago to Santa Monica. Of course there were hugs and mugs in the morning, circle every afternoon. Some went bowling, I went hiking, and some golfed. But the main purpose was to dance. There were dance lessons during the day and dances with a DJ at night. We had a skit one evening, a pot luck another, and even a dessert pot luck after circle one afternoon.
Line dancing is always fun, but I do seem to be somewhat out of step.

Everybody enjoys the country western dances.

We even learned some new lines dances. This one had 2 women for each guy.

Some of our decorations. This is Rt. 66 going through Springfield, IL.

Picacho Peak

On top of Picacho Peak.
I must say, hiking and climbing to the top of this peak was the most challenging I've had. It was very steep and there was as much climbing as hiking. We wore gloves since they had wire lines strung to help you climb. It was only a short hike, less than 2 miles to the top, but the elevation change was over 1000 feet.