Okay, I am totally confused. Mom took me to the park on what I thought was Sunday, but park day is Friday. Then when she normally goes to teach classes on Monday, we went for a hike. What is going on?? Between the rain and closures of public events, I really don’t know what day it is…other than every day is a great opportunity to go on an adventure!
The rains stopped for now, so we headed off to Apache Wash to hike and see the flowers. Even getting there on the Sonoran Parkway was lined with flowers, so this is the time to get out and see them. Be aware that this is also when the snakes wake up. I do not like snakes; just the smell of them makes me stop in my tracks because I’ve been snake trained.
Anyway, Apache Wash trail head is located at 1600 E Sonoran Desert Dr, Phoenix, AZ 85085 and does not require any special passes. Parking is ample and free. Dogs are welcome on leash. The trails are open to horses, hikers, runners, and bicycles.
Normally week days are quiet but today was packed. Mom said schools are closed along with her community center. Guess everyone had the same idea – to get some fresh air and enjoy nature. That we did!
The yellows (Desert Daisies) are in full bloom, and the purples (Lupines) are popping. You have several trail options at Apache Wash but our favorite is the loop around, which is the “S” trail. A map is located at the human restrooms, so take a look and decide what you would like to do. Our loop is 2 ½ miles or 3 if you add the vista in and out to the top for views. The Apache Wash hike stays in valley, which was still kind of wet from the rains. The S or Sidewinder one has rocks but isn’t difficult. It slowly meanders up and around the main hill.
We start by going to the right and head up. The flowers started immediately, and I could tell many dogs had been by. I had to sniff every message. Woof! We met a nice gentleman from England who recently had knee surgery. He was doing great, but we eventually passed him. Mom noticed how the African Stink weed was getting out of control. This is an invasive, non-native plant that, although pretty, is squeezing out our natural habitat. It’s the small yellow flowers we see all over the hills.
I smelled the snakes; the hillside is full of them! They live in the rocks up there. I parked it. Mom talked to me, reassured me, and then we proceeded with caution. By staying on the main trail, we reduce the risk of running into rattlesnakes. They tend to hide in the bushes and off the beaten path. Always be alert!
The temperatures this time of year are just perfect: not cold and not hot. We made our way around to the other side and didn’t see as many flowers. This side doesn’t get as much sunshine, so the flowers haven’t taken off yet. They are coming, though. You get great views on this side of the faraway mountains. We didn’t take the Vista trail as it is known to have tons of snakes and stayed on the S trail. The spring is the worst time as they are disoriented. We didn’t want to encounter any and continued on around the loop, which meant we eventually took a left at the big Saguaro back toward where we started.
You’ll need to take one more left to stay on the S trail, and at that point, you’ll see the parking lot. Right before the end, I got a cactus in my foot. Ouch! I have to admit that I screamed…like a Shiba. Mom tries to help me, but I get all worked up. I won’t let her help me. Sigh. I know she will make me feel better by pulling it out, but I resist. Hey – don’t judge me! She persisted, and she got it out. I was like “what cactus?” and on my way. I like to live in the moment, baby!
Good advice, I think, for all of us. Stay in the moment, appreciate it, and enjoy life as it really is one grand adventure!
Hi! I am Kumaito (Kuma for short), a multi-tan Shiba Inu. My breed is one of the oldest and purest from Japan. I personally was born in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, moved to Friendswood, Texas, and now call Phoenix, Arizona home. I enjoy running or hiking almost every day with my mom, chasing rabbits out of my neighborhood, playing with toys, pestering my brother Edmond, eating, napping … well, I love just about everything and everyone!
My mom, Lorraine Bossé-Smith is kind enough to help me share my Great Adventures, big and small. My mom is a motivational speaker, corporate trainer, business consultant, executive coach, behavioral-wellness expert, and author of eight published books. More importantly, she’s the best doggy mom ever!
and be sure to follow me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Kumathedog/ and Instagram: kumaitothedog
Get outside! You never know what you’ll discover, and our paths just might cross. Happy tails!