Sunday, March 5, 2017


Sunday, March 5 – We took another hike this morning in Usery Mountain Regional Park near Phoenix. We combined several trails to make a little over a 4-mile hike. Moon Rock was part of the hike and is an excellent hike with ups and downs. Great for mountain biking.

Moon rock hike

We can’t get over how green the desert is.Moon rock hike

Maybe this is where Moon Rock trail got its name.Moon rock hike

Moon rock hike

Moon rock hike

We've sure enjoyed this park, and the many hiking opportunities. We looked into extending our stay here but there are no vacancies.

Last night we attended a movie at the Nature Center entitled “Desert Dreams: Celebrating Five Seasons in the Sonoran Desert.” It was about life in the desert during the four seasons. We think the five comes from adding the rainy season to the four regular seasons.  It had no spoken lines, only the sounds of nature in the desert. Lasted about an hour and was pretty enjoyable. Well attended too – a full house.

Jan, Bill and Jan RVing in the USA, suggested that we check with the Ranger what the big Phoenix sign on the side of the mountain means. Marsha did just that. Here is what she found out.

A former WWII pilot was convinced some sort of directional aid was needed to help pilots find Phoenix. In the 1950s, the Air Explorers Boy Scouts cleared away brush and arranged rocks to spell “PHOENIX” on the southern slopes of one of the peaks in the Usery Mountains. They painted the rocks white, and it was fronted by a large white arrow pointing to the airport, located almost thirty miles away. Each letter is about 100 feet high and 12 feet wide.  The tip of the arrow to the end of the word, the sign is 1,00 feet across— that’s about the size of the Eiffel Tower. Now you know the rest of the story!

Phoenix sign

One last photo from Marsha. On her bucket list to get a photo of a javelin, Gambel’s quail, coyote and the Baseball Hall of Fame. Well, guess what. She got one of the four and is she thrilled. Doesn’t take much to make her happy.

Gambel’s quail.
Gambel's quail

This is our last day in the mountains north of Phoenix. Tomorrow we move down to Apache Junction. We will miss Usery Mountains but put it on the list of places we might want to return to again.

Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see y’all back real soon. Have a great day!