We took a very interesting hike the other day on the Marcus Landslide Trail, which begins at the Tom Thumb trailhead in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve in Scottsdale. This is an interpretive trail with signs along the way describing the geological forces that led to a massive rock landslide about 500,000 years ago. The four mile round trip trail is fairly easy except for the final loop section which climbs up to views of the remnants of the landslide.
If you like the Sonoran desert and rocks, this is a great hike. And we added a new word to our limited vocabulary of geological terms, grus (pronounced groos), which is crumbled granite formed by weathering. In our own terms, grus is the gravely stuff that makes our boots and bike tires want to slip out from under us on the trail. Be warned, the trails around here are covered in it.
There are also lots of mushroom shaped rocks, and huge boulders strewn around.
The lighting was not good for photos of the actual landslide, but this is just a small section of the 4,000’ long slide.
As we were entering the preserve parking area, I noticed a large bird on a saguaro.
Jim stopped to get a closer look, and we later determined it was a Harris hawk.
It flew off and landed on some nearby rocks, where it joined four others. Unfortunately a car came up behind us who had no interest in bird watching. They hurriedly drove around us which caused the hawks to all fly away.
Now for the rest of our week. We decided to take advantage of an internet special at Fountain Hills Dental Care. $59 for cleaning, x-rays and exam. Luckily we both got good reports, and since neither of us has any issues right now, we might actually be able to stay away from Mexican dentists this winter.
I spent my usual Thursday morning with the cats, and on Friday I coerced Jim to come along to help transport and set up for the annual Holiday Pet Festival in Scottsdale on Saturday. Fearless Kitty Rescue sets up a booth there to sell cat-related items as a fundraiser and PR for the shelter. We loaded the back of the Subaru with tables, chairs, and boxes, and along with several other volunteers got things looking pretty good.
The festival takes place at Westworld, a huge equestrian and event center.
This is Kim, one of the founders of the rescue, goofing around with Jim and the Fearless Kitty mascot. Can you tell how much fun he was having?
We made quite a transformation in just a couple hours. Since we didn’t go to the actual event on Saturday, I haven’t heard yet how they made out.
And last evening just after sunset, Miss Take to the Highway, Suzanne, came rolling in, here to spend a couple days before she jets off to Texas for the holidays. We’re planning a hike and maybe even a bike ride. We’ll see how it goes.