Spring Break in Phoenix, AZ
March 2005

~Day 2~

March 24
Went hiking at South Mountain Park, supposedly the largest city park in the country at 17,000 acres. It's really gorgeous and seems to be only lightly used, at least on a weekday. We saw a helicopter acting strangely and think it may have been airlifting horses from one site to another on the mountain, although it was hard to tell even with the binoculars. We hiked near the peak where all the antennae are. Handy to have tall landforms around; we here in the Midwest have to actually *build* places for our antennae.

South Mountain Park, and the antennae peak
View from Dobbin's Lookout, facing north
Along an unofficial trail beginning at Gila Valley

After South Mountain, we went to Sonic Drive-in for lunch, then headed to Mesa to see the Cubs vs. the A's at HoHoKam Park. Since we didn't get there early enough, the good lawn seats were mostly taken, but we found a nice spot in right-center.  Cubs won 5-2 - Rusch started, and Barrett hit a solo homer (which came nowhere near us).

HoHoKam Park, from the berm in right-center
Another view - pay no attention to the man in the green shirt
I wonder what they're doing in Chicago right now?

Since the game ended in the middle of the afternoon, we weren't sure what to do with ourselves next, so we drove through a really dreadful part of the metro area (Main Street west from Mesa through Tempe) that was nothing but dive motels and adult video stores, on our way to a mall in downtown Phoenix (that I'm not sure anyone knows is actually there) and saw Million Dollar Baby, and followed it up with tex-mex at a very tasty restaurant at the mall.  I tried a local beer, a Kiltlifter's - yum!! We also discovered the secret to the success of outdoor dining in Phoenix: huge portable heaters. Seriously!

Day 3