Come along with me as I ramble along a different path…

I am taking my blog, which has been inactive for oh so long, into a new direction, reflecting some of my changing interests and passions. I will celebrate my 70th birthday soon, and I have decided that it is time to stop talking about wanting to do this or that. It’s time to figure out how to do what I want to do … or stop talking about it. It’s time to get off of my pandemic isolation couch, stop bingeing on cookies and Netflix, and start living.

After several years of trying to get someone … anyone … to take me camping, I started researching how to take myself camping. I spent a year or more reading blogs, watching vlogs, and following FaceBook pages by and about women traveling and camping solo; I finally embarked on my first solo camping trip a few months ago.

My campsite on the top of a mountain near Crown King, AZ
My campsite on the Mogollon Rim, near Strawberry, AZ

While I will continue to post images of my life near home, I will also share with you my camping experiences. Come along with me as I explore new paths and ramble along the highways and backroads of our United States of America.

Bear Canyon Lake

Twilight in the High Country

It’s not all dry, hot desert in Arizona. Bear Canyon Lake, one of several fishing lakes built by Arizona Game and Fish, is nestled back a series of dirt roads on the Mogollon Rim. The lake, with a depth of 50 feet and set at an elevation of 7600 feet, is accessible only by foot trail from the undeveloped campgrounds above.

Summer Peace at Bear Canyon Lake

Bear Canyon Lake is located just a few hours northeast of Phoenix, Arizona.

As if the earth reflects our lives …

The harshness of the desert landscape with the flat grey sky, dried grass, and formidable, imposing boulders hit me hard while I hiked through Boyce Thompson Arboretum a few days ago. This image is a visual representation of the relentless record-breaking soul-sucking heat (34 days of 110+ temps) and drought in Arizona, the bizarre nature of our world with pandemic isolation, unemployment, and online classrooms, raging wildfires, and the endless vitriol of this election cycle. I pray for rain, for healing, and for peace.

A bit further along the trail, I noticed this desert tree softening the jagged edges of the landscape. I stopped and gazed on the tree a while, taking into my mind and spirit the refreshing green life, and I was reminded to be grateful for all of creation … to be grateful for all that life offers. Without the difficult times, how would we recognize the good times? Without the sad times, how would we recognize the happy times?

While it shows evidence of Arizona’s drought, the arboretum is still a treasure of plants and trees from the Arizona and Sonoran desert as well as from around the world.

The Boyce Thompson Arboretum is located east of Phoenix, AZ on Hwy 60.