Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Pinetop Getaway

Finally a trip up north. A getaway from the heat, the cacti, and the punishing sun. It's nice to hike in trees... Really nice. We rented a log cabin for 3 days in Pinetop. A cozy little place with a wood stove and horseshoe pits in the backyard. The best part was that the property borders national forest land, so we could literally walk outside the backdoor into miles and miles of woods. Pretty cool.

A short walk out the backdoor. 
This trip was a family affair. Nights spent sitting around the dining room table playing Scrabble and Sorry. Mornings lounging on the back patio reading, sipping hot coffee, and listening to the birds in the forest wake-up for the day. There is something about waking up in a cabin in the woods that's pretty magical. I could do it everyday...  After coffee and a breakfast of biscuits & gravy James and I went for a hike out back. Cross-country through charred ponderosa to no particular destination. Jordy mimicking the birds as he rode high on James's back. After a couple miles we came to a trail. In an area with a dense mountain lion population we were excited to find some nice tracks still frozen in the mud. I couldn't tell if the tracks were cat or canine, knowing the two could be so similar. Absent any claw marks we decided on cat, but after some research at home, I had to change my mind. New conclusion: Large, well manicured domestic dog. In case you're wondering how I reached this conclusion, check out this website. If you think I'm wrong, let me know.

Cat or dog?
 After some more cross-country hiking, and hopping a couple barbed-wire fences, we caught another trail climbing Pat Mullen mountain where we ran into some pretty gnarly Alligator Junipers. After an easy ascent we caught some limited views of the White Mountains. The trees stretched in all directions and covered the distant peaks. It reminded me of home. 

Alligator Juniper
 We also managed to get in a little fishing at a place called Silver Creek, one of the premier fishing destinations for Apache Trout. The narrow creek proved a tough spot to fish for the kids, as casts often sailed long into the tall grass on the other side. But even though we were skunked, fun was had by all. It was a fun, but short 3 days, and for me at least, tough to leave the cabin. One thing I know for sure, nothing beats family bonding time in the woods. 

Fishing on Silver Creek

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