A Misadventure…

So we had an adventure today!

A half day for the kids means an early release for teachers.  So a group of us piled our dogs into a car and hit the road for some fun!  We had planed on a specific location, but we never did make it.

But that’s half the fun of hiking, sometimes you just don’t know where you’re going to end up.

An Attempt to Olla House

Hikers: Dave and his dog Demetrius, Jackie and her dog Lyra, and me with my dog Bentley

Temperature: 50s and 60s mostly

I think overall a favorite hike out here is to the ruins of Olla House.  It’s the remains of an Anasazi Cliff Dwelling nearby.  It’s always fun to go and explore the ancient housing, and even more fun to watch the dogs climb over the rocks.

Now to be clear, we did not make it to Olla House.  We missed the turn and started our hike a little ways, or lot of ways away from where we normally would.  It didn’t matter, as Dave put it, it was still a nice walk.

The dogs were hilarious to watch.  Demetrius is used to hikes and spent most of the evening way ahead of us.  He would run off, into any direction that caught his eye, not stopping to dig the burs out of his paws.  Bentley, the newest one to the group was shocked and pleased by this new idea  of being off the leash and took off after him.  Since she is still a baby, she came back on a semi-regular basis to make sure everything was still okay.  Lyra seemed content with running in between them and us humans.  Many times she choose one of us to follow, and we wouldn’t realize it til we almost stepped on her.

We walked along the canyons, where the slate rock met the sand.  When we paused for a water break, looked up and realized we were getting a little too close to the evening.  It was time to turn back.

Calling it a night, we stopped for a couple pictures, but overall it was time to end our little misadventure and go back to reality.

Jackie and Lyra

Jackie and Lyra

Bentley and Me

Bentley and Me

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An Evening Stroll

Stepping outside of school today, it hit me pretty quickly.  I needed to get out an go for a mini hike.

This week wasn’t bad, not by a long shot.  It came pretty close to perfect almost. The seventh grade team held a shoe games competition, which was pretty cool to be  apart of and see the kids interact with their culture.  My principal came by and visited my room, and left with glowing remarks on my lesson plan and a request I write a description up for the school district.  My close friends gave birth to a healthy girl, and I survived a two day baby-sitting gig with their son.  And I had rescued a little puppy.

Despite all the good, or maybe because of it, I felt a little restless.  No need to pack food or tons of water.  Just needed a friend and some dogs and no worry about time.

Laguna Off Shoot

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Location: Off shoot of Laguna Creek

Temperature: Warm until the sun went down

Who: My friend/coworker Kate, Kate’s dog Sally, and my little stray

Difficulty: Easy

Time: About an hour

So for me, the hike started on the way over to the meet up point.  My little stray has not figured out just yet how to walk on a leash and she was kind of spinning her wheels.  Around and around she goes, always making sure I was near by as the bigger dogs barked at us.  She doesn’t realize that at the moment we are attached to each other.

I've been calling her pretty girl and Shideezhí (little sister in Navajo)

I’ve been calling her pretty girl and Shideezhí (little sister in Navajo)

When we met up with Kate and her dog Sally, all of us were just ready for a quiet walk.  Whatever restlessness I was feeling at 3:30 had slowly relaxed.

Kate is relatively new to the area and we’ve not taken her out very much for hikes just yet.  On top of that, the teacher that had taught me how to hike had moved back to the east coast, Denny, and there doesn’t seem to be a replacement for him when it comes to breaking in the new teacher about the hikes.  Hopefully as the year goes on, and we do more hikes, we’ll all become more comfortable.

Kate and Ms. Sally

Kate and Ms. Sally

Hopefully we’ll be able to show her how to enjoy her new home.  Even if there is no replacement for Denny.

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We followed the natural curves of the dried creek bed.  The sides came up around us, guiding us towards its intended destination.  It’s not impossible to climb up the sides, but I truly wouldn’t want to.  There is sense of safety and timelessness in the dried river bed.  Sound and sights are blocked, and I like to imagine what that I’m seeing what the first people in the region had seen.

Of course, I know that’s not the case since, the region’s climate has changed several times.  Laguna Creek gets it’s name from a series of pictographs featuring laguna birds that the incoming Spaniards saw when they first arrived.  Which means someone had seen Laguna when it was actually a laguna.

As we walked, me imagining I’m in a pre1492 world, we came across this…

Dumping site

Dumping site

Unfortunately, a little too common in the area.  And really, any area.  We as humans need to treat our homes better than we do.  I don’t foster any fantasies of doomsday scenarios, but I do feel that at the end of the day, this is what we have.  Even if we just use it for a pleasurable hike on a Friday evening.

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About here is where we turned around.  As the sunset, we quickly made our way back home.  We didn’t make it to the water, but we’ll get there eventually.  We have time.

New friends

New friends

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Leave only foot prints.

My poor little stray is not used to walks.  She was very tired and kept giving me her little grunting whines.  As if to say, Megan, carry me.  We dropped her off in Flagstaff this Friday.  We’re hoping that she finds a new home that will allow her plenty of hikes.

 

Good luck Shideezhí!

Good luck Shideezhí!