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    Ross Jennings reviewed Flatiron Via Siphon Draw Trail

    9 months ago

    Lots of work up and down, but definitely worth it. When you get to Flatiron, spend the extra hour to get to the top of the mountain above Flatiron, in the hoodoos. A bit of a scramble, but you'll make it. I've now been up this twice, but based on my second up and down, go a little slow on the way down. You can use your arms to scramble down, aided by hiking or some kind of gloves for traction, and you'll not only do great, but you'll feel a lot better the next day. Well worth the effort.

    Ross Jennings reviewed Tom's Thumb Trail

    over 1 year ago

    Well worth the effort. Much like Camelback or Squaw Peak in elevation gain but a nice sandy trail and no rocks or scrambling. Pretty direct up and down. Great parkland of climbing rocks to wander around and climb (or not, depending on your rock climbing ability) at the summit plateau. Really nice. I'll be back.

    Ross Jennings completed Tom's Thumb Trail

    over 1 year ago

    Ross Jennings reviewed Annette Lake Trail

    over 3 years ago

    Very nice hike. A set of switchbacks in the middle remind you that is really in the mountains, and maybe you should walk or jog outside a little more instead of watching Dr. Phil reruns. Spoiler alert - Dr. Phil calls them all a bunch of idiots and sends the druggie or lush to rehab. Far greater to sweat your way to a beautiful Cascade lake right at treeline and jump in for an exquisitely refreshing swim.

    Ross Jennings completed Annette Lake Trail

    over 3 years ago

    Ross Jennings reviewed Lake Serene Trail

    over 3 years ago

    Very nice day hike. The first part is pretty flat but the last bit takes a bit of energy. Really worth it. The trail and lake face north so it keeps its snow later than most other places at its elevation. Enough of a hike to stretch your legs but nothing most families can't do.

    Ross Jennings reviewed Saint Edward State Park and Big Finn Hill King County Park

    almost 5 years ago

    My wife and I have come here almost every Sunday for over ten years. I run, she walks, we meet up at the lake and walk back up together. I run and walk it on my own once a week. Could not be a nicer place to feel a bit of wilderness and be close to home. Get the annual parking pass for $30; it's a bargain. Enough people so my wife can walk a bit on her own until we meet up and not feel nervous, but never so many people it's crowded. Far enough off 405 to avoid mobs. Enjoy!

    Ross Jennings reviewed Apache Trail

    almost 6 years ago

    We drove this road thinking the map must have made a mistake. It indicated that this was an Arizona state highway, but the symbol was a dirt road. How could that be?

    It was true. That made the trip a bit of an adventure through gorgeous, undeveloped country, a real throwback to the days in which the road was built as a supply route to build Roosevelt Lake in the early days of the 1900s. The road is mostly gravel from Apache Junction to Roosevelt Lake. Later road builders built freeways and good highways south and east of the "Apache Trail", as this road is known. So your day trip is Phoenix to Roosevelt Lake on the Apache Trail, state highway to Globe to the south, and back to Phoenix by freeway. Stop for pictures, views and to pee, and just enjoy remote Arizona at arms length from Phoenix. You'll need a car wash at the end of your trip to get the dust off. Very small price to pay.

    We stumbled onto an absolute gem. Any car can make it. Go do it.

    Ross Jennings completed Apache Trail to Roosevelt Dam

    almost 6 years ago

    Ross Jennings reviewed Superstition Ridgeline

    almost 6 years ago

    Once you reach the mountain proper, one or two gentle miles out of the parking lot, it's pretty much straight up and straight back down again. Nice plateau at the top. Flatiron Peak is, well, flat on top, a welcome relief from the climb and soon to be descent. There is a higher point not much farther up that you should climb to get the best views. Then you know you're really up there, at small plane altitude. The Valley of the Sun is at your feet, but owing to the smog, you can't really see it in detail. Who cares? You're up there, and you got there on your own power.

    Unless you're a total stud in great shape, you'll trash your legs on this one. It's worth it, however. Makes you feel good (especially once you're down).

    As in all Arizona, seasons are important here. In summer, go early (4am early, no kidding) and bring more water than you think you'll need. Fall and spring are great. I've never done this in winter, but that might be the best time of all, other than in storms and snow, which you'll often get on the top.

    This is two Camelbacks in elevation and effort, which makes it both a bit of a test and within the range of most people. Take it seriously, but do it. Great fun.

    Ross Jennings completed Superstition Ridgeline Trail

    almost 6 years ago

    Ross Jennings reviewed Snow Lake Trail

    about 7 years ago

    This is a western Washington classic. Lots of people will be on the trail, but it doesn't feel crowded as much as friendly. Good test for the legs but pretty much anyone not in a wheelchair can do it. Bring some bread to hand-feed blue jay camp robbers near the lake - they'll swoop from their nearby perch and snatch bread chunks out of your outstretched fingertips. This beautiful hike earns every one of its five stars.