Our first hike in many, many months was enjoyed last Saturday morning (October 9) in the Phoenix Mountain Preserve. Eight of us gathered for a beautiful morning of hiking and catching up on what has been happening in our lives over the summer. We even had the treat of watching a 3-foot Western Diamondback mosey on up the slope after crossing the trail. He didn’t bother us, we didn’t bother him. The conversation continued as we adjourned to Starbucks for coffee and a snack after the hike. What a great way to enjoy a perfect-weather day outside with some fun people! Thank you all for making it an adventurous start to the season.

We do not have a hike leader for Saturday, October 23; so our next hike will be Saturday, November 13, led by Katherine Kruse. The details will be forthcoming.

We are also looking for hike leaders from January 8 to May 14. March 26 is the only date that has been taken. There are plenty of opportunities for you to lead your favorite hike. Pick your date. Contact outdoorgroup@phoenixuu.org to get on the calendar as a hike leader. We need you!!

We have a reservation at Sunset Crater National Monument for a spring campout May 20-22. Detailed information will be coming as we get closer to the date. Put it on your calendar to save the date! You will not want to miss this!

As we resume hiking, we will need to be socially distanced. At the beginning of each hike, we will gather to introduce ourselves, masked, and ask what everyone is comfortable with. We will also make room for everyone to talk about what they are not comfortable with. This is to be part of the normal discussion, and we ask that you speak out about what you are not comfortable with.

I am very excited about resuming our hikes. We all mentioned on Saturday how much we missed our regular hiking schedule. Stay safe, and I hope to see you soon, live and in person, 6 feet away. To lead a hike or if you have questions, please contact outdoorgroup@phoenixuu.org. See you in November!

– Bonnie White