Riding Arizona
There would be incredible riding in the Phoenix area, I was being told, near South Mountain Park, aka ‘the world’s largest metropolitan park’. South Mountain, also SoMo, is indeed only about a 5 minute drive from downtown Phoenix. And it turned out to be almost too good to be true: the bike shop where I rented (Cactus bikes) was right next to the trailhead and the trails were rocky, beautiful, awesome and ultra-technical at times! The more technical the trails are the better of course, as they explore your mental and physical limits, and send gushes of undiluted adrenaline through your body (if you make it), horrid pain (if you crash) or sincere humbleness (if you walk). I did a loop comprising the National Trail and the Mormon Trail – National is a true gem amidst an abundance of granite and cacti… except for a creaking pivot on my rental Jamis, the ride was of a zen-like quality.

Running Arizona
On sunday January 9, 2005 Phoenix’s Rock ‘n roll Marathon would take place. About 30000 participants and many more spectators were expected. The finish line was in Tempe, college town and suburb of Phoenix – though ‘suburb’ isn’t the right word. The Valley of the Sun, a desert plain that is scorching in the summer and more than pleasant in the winter, is basically one humongous metropolitan area comprising Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe and a bunch of other cities, characterized by a San Jose-style type of urban sprawl. It has a definite ‘Western’ feel to it. It attracts hords of ‘winter birds’ and retirees and is growing seriously – not unlike Vegas. R wasn’t very impressed by her performance in the half-marathon – I was and thought she was looking more gorgeous than ever. It was a nice and sunny day, the crowds were huge and there were a bunch of bands playing along the course (hence the ‘Rock ‘n roll’).

Rainy (and snowy) Arizona
After the race we left for Sedona. It had started raining, and at the higher elevations, snowing, so the red rocks got a nice white coating. No hiking or biking today, but that didn’t really matter. More pics here...

4 Responses to “Arizonication“

  1. Hombre Says:

    Walking in the breeze,
    on the plain of old Sedona,

    ps: eindelijk zie ik eens een grote foto
    van jullie samen :-)

  2. El Hombre Says:

    Is dat een songtekst?

  3. Hombre Says:

    Havalina (op een plaatje met de naam

  4. El Hombre Says:

    Wel verdomme, dat had ik toch moeten weten… nu is Havalina wel een van mijn minst favoriete Pixies-nummers…

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