Gonna break these chains around me
Gonna learn to fly again
May be hard, may be hard, but I’ll do it
When I’m back on my feet again
Gonna feel the sweet light of heaven
Shining down its light on me
One sweet day, one sweet day I will feel it
When I’m back on my feet again by Dianna Eve Warren
After being down with COVID 19 for two plus weeks, I was ready to break the chains around me and get back on my feet again by hitting the trails that include brewery stops. Granted I started off slowly with longer walks around our Phoenix Dreamy Draw neighborhood and into the Phoenix Mountain Preserve. Carolyn was back to running and working to regain her stride before her Covid setback and she definitely broke the chains much quicker than me. To commemorate my three week anniversary of testing positive we celebrated with a five mile round trip canal/street walk to North Mountain Brewing Company. If I was going to break those chains, I had to put in a brewery for a reward. North Mountain is a hidden gem off of 7th St and Dunlap. The “Golden Ale” is their signature brew and it has a great touch of honey that makes it an easy sipper.
The following day, Carolyn and I returned to the McDowell Sonoran Preserve and the Lost Dog Trailhead. Carolyn did a trail run and I read a book and then we headed out on the trails for a nice loop hike. Nothing real strenuous since I still wasn’t 100%. The hike was about three miles on the Lost Dog Wash to Ringtail. Very beautiful desert hike that had some slight elevation gains. Our reward for this adventure was a trip to Bone Haus Brewing located south of Shea close to the Fry’s supermarket. Another hidden gem with a great atmosphere and good brews. Our personal favorite is “Englemann’s Elixir” a prickly pear pale ale. We really like this one and on tap it is something special. Check out if you are ever in the Fountain Hills area on Shea.
I could feel myself getting stronger as the after effects of Covid were decreasing day by day. Carolyn and I decided that it would be good to see how I felt on a longer, more strenuous hike. On the last Sunday in March, we hiked in the Phoenix Sonoran Preserve from the Desert Vista Trailhead located northeast of I17 and Jomax. For a Sunday afternoon, we did not encounter many other hikers. Our trail was the Hawk’s Nest to Dixie Mountain Loop. Our total hike was was over 4.5 miles and elevation gain of 850 feet. In the spring a great horned owl returns to her nest in a saguaro, gives birth and the baby owls are so cute to view. Those babies and their momma are something to see. (Carolyn did this hike with me after running on another strenuous trail loop of around four miles.)
Our brewery reward for this hike was Simple Machine Brewing Company located in the Deer Valley Air Park. This was a new brewery experience for us and once again another winner. Great open air pub with a patio and a local following. We will return when in that area. My personal favorite was the “Day Crusher” blonde Ale.
My day went so well, I figured I should get back on it and Monday we headed to White Tank Mountain Regional Park. Being Monday, there was very few encounters with humans on the trails. Our big hike for the day was a loop that took us on the South, Bajada, Mule Deer, and Goat Camp Trails. We managed 7.25 miles with elevation gains of 530 feet. Located close to Luke Air Force Base, our start was quite noisy as their jets flew over multiple times. White Tank area has been known to have snakes but the only wildlife encountered were small rodents. After this hike, I still had some energy left and we ended up hiking the Waterfall Trail. There is a waterfall, only after big rains, and this hike is worthwhile to view the many petroglyphs. I’m always fascinated by the ancient drawings and this trail has many to view. We adding two miles and another 400 feet of elevation gains to our daily total.
On the way back home, we found us another brewery to stop and visit, State 48 Brewery in Surprise. State 48 has six locations in the Phoenix area but this a first for us in Surprise. Our food was really good and our beer was ok. They happened to be out of several that day.
These hikes bring me to the end of March. I started the month of March under the weather with Covid but I continued to get better and by mid month I was back on my feet again hitting the trails and stopping at breweries along the way. Craft beer and hiking–it doesn’t get much better then that. Back in the day, we used to listen to Michael Bolton. The song for me always represented overcoming adversity with some encouraging words. In case you forgot who he was, I have attached “Back On My Feet Again” by Michael.