Thursday, December 10, 2015

Camelback Christmas

Weather:  63°, sunny, slight breeze

Time:  33 minutes

About this hike:  Being a weekday crowd (I was laid off from my job on Tuesday) plus cooler temps, I expected a near-record time up the mountain.  For some reason I felt slightly lethargic and queasy going up, so not even under-30 today.

Regardless, this was a special hike.  Even before I reached the summit I knew the Camelback Christmas tree was going to be up.  There were pine needles all over the trail.

This year they went all out.  I'm not an expert in pine trees, but from the bluish branch tips I'm thinking it's a blue spruce—a beautiful, tall, full tree.  Too bad it will likely succumb to the desert heat, wind, and dryness within a few days.  It's decorators did put a large pot of water under it though, so hopefully it lasts.  They also put battery operated lights all over the tree.  I'm going to be at Papago Park tonight and plan to use my binoculars to spy on the top of Camelback to see if it is lit up.  Because being at Camelback on any trail after dark gets the PHX PD in a huff.

Newly unemployed, I have plenty of time to hike.  I may come back tomorrow and place an ornament on the tree.  On Saturday Camelback Santa will be handing out candy canes, so parking will probably be impossible.

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