December 27th, 2016 ~ Day 277
There are a few places you can park if you hike North Mountain, depending on how long you want to hike. Today I was lucky enough to find parking at the base of North Mountain, right off 7th Street. A small lot that holds ten cars, if even.
I began my climb to the top of North Mountain heading up the paved road. North Mountain is a paved service road that heads up to the towers on the peak. Beginning my climb in the dark, I found it much easier to hike on pavement rather than the rocky terrain of a dirt trail.
Shortly after I began, just after the first switchback, I looked out across the valley and the city lights were already beginning to greet me. I didn’t realize I could see so much climbing only 50 feet uphill. Everyday I get the opportunity to learn something new.
The higher I climbed the more I could see. Catching my first glimpse of the moon, I was in awe of the beauty that surrounded me. So amazing! I so wish I had brought my new camera. I’d love to see what I could capture of the moon.
I made it to the top of the service road and touched the fence. Then I continued back down and up and around to the towers on the peak, trying to get as much mileage as possible. It’s probably only a quarter mile more for the in and out hike.
I’m so glad I climbed up here. At the top of the mountain, I was mesmerized by how many lights there were to see. The city lights were shining brightly all around me in every direction. My favorite part, any dark spots between the city lights, is a mountain. One of the reasons why I love Phoenix is that you could be hiking a mountain in the middle of the city, yet feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere hiking in the desert. There are so many mountains in this city for me to continue my love of hiking.
After sitting peacefully in the dark at the top of the mountain for a few minutes, I decided it was time to turn around. I headed back down the way I had come. As I climbed down, the moon along with the mountain ridgeline made for a spectacular view. The sun was beginning to brighten up the sky. One thing about hiking North Mountain, you get a good workout. With only a 1.7 mile in and out hike, the elevation is 500 feet. Another great way to start my day!