Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Fall Has Arrived

It is December 7 and fall has finally arrived in this part of Arizona. For anyone who thinks fall means leaves changing colors, you must look really hard to find it here. But yesterday we hiked up the Peralta Canyon in the Superstition Mountains and we found a little bit of fall.

That was exciting!

We were hiking the steep trail up to the Fremont Saddle for a view of Weaver's Needle.

Fremont Saddle is probably names after Gen. John C. Fremont who led a military campaign in the mid-1800s for American control of California. Weaver's Needle was named for Pauline Weaver in 1853. "P Weaver" is one of the graffiti names scratched into the walls of the Casa Grande in Coolidge, where we are volunteers January through March. I knew the name was a man's, but didn't know much about him. In reading Hiker's Guide to the Superstition Wilderness by Jack Carlson and Elizabeth Stewart, I learned that "Pauline Weaver was born in Tennessee in 1797. His parents...named him Powell Weaver. He called himself Paulin and Paulino in Spanish but became known as Pauline to the Anglos. He first ventured into Arizona in 1831 and became well known as a scout, trapper, mountain man and miner." And here we have twice hiked to see Weaver's Needle. You can read about our hike last year here

Hiking back down from the saddle, we had a great view of the countryside to the southeast.

This is a very popular hiking trail, though it is steep. We passed 28 other hikers in the nearly three hours we were on the trail. Unfortunately, some hikers don't pick up their own litter. Ever since we volunteered at Bryce Canyon National Park in 2005, we have tried to pick up litter as we hike. As a matter of fact, we received a small stuff sack as a gift when we finished our time at Lathrop State Park in September.

I now carry that in my pack to use for collecting trash. We brought back three plastic water bottles in addition to some paper we picked up. We are glad it is easy to recycle at Valle del Oro.

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