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Posts Tagged ‘Flagstaff Aspens’

Sometimes, usually unsolicited, a friend will attempt to speed my journey to self-enlightenment:

“You live in Arizona? You must like the Desert!”

I answer,

“Well, there’s the desert, and then there’s Arizona!”

I think I know why I like aspen trees so much — they remind me of the carefree summers of youth. The silver dollar eucalyptus trees would quiver as I looked across the ravine from the back sliding window. My brother and I would play war games amongst those trees and think of all sorts of pastimes during the summer months.

I don’t get back to L.A. as much anymore to see the tall eucalyptus, but Northern Arizona has a great substitute: aspen trees! The quaking leaves and the associated wind noise calm me. So when Mike and Susan said they were going to Flagstaff to see the aspen groves, I will thrilled when the offered to let me tag along.

Although an enthusiastic people portraitist, I took the camera along anyway, hoping to see if I could capture anything close to the way that I knew I was going to feel.

North of flagstaff, we started hiking at about 9,000 ft. Passing through a dark, lush forest we came to a clearing with the San Francisco peaks in the near distance. Mike and Susan stopped to take photos. (I think they were being kind to me by finding an excuse to let me catch my breath).

Mike and Susan stop to let me rest.

We continued to hike up to the stand of yellow color in the top left of the above image. I looked up and realized why they make this trip together every year. See for yourself:

Aspens!

By now we had hiked far enough that Mike said,
“I wonder why we haven’t seen any other hikers in over an hour?”

We were lost, but it didn’t matter. I stood in one place, and did 90 degree turns. And without taking a step, I was able to make the following images:

Flagstaff aspens

90 degrees to the right:

And one more turn:

Hiking in Flagstaff, AZ

Realizing that we had strayed well off the trail, we decided to turn back, with an appetite for lunch and already feeling sore hindquarters. Mike turned to me and said,

“You know why I like to hike to exhaustion so much these days? It helps me to appreciate paved roads and to tolerate occasional traffic.”

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