Hiking Blackett’s Ridge In The Light Of The Full Moon   5 comments

At the end of one of our naturalists training sessions last October, Phil Bentley said he would be hiking Blackett’s Ridge late the following day to see the sunset and the full-moon rise on top of Blackett’s Ridge in Sabino Canyon, then hike down in the moonlight. Cool idea, I thought.  As it turned out, I got the gathering time wrong, so Phil and I did the moonlight hike, but not together. It was a gorgeous moonlit night. (Click here for posting on last October’s hike.)

Since October, we have talked about doing the moonlight hike again. Last week we agree to do another moonlit hike, this time together, with an invitation being sent to all SCVN.

Debbie and Jerry

At the gathering time in the Sabino Canyon’s center parking lot, with Phil as our leader, Debbie and Jerry Bird, Tim Ralph and I set off to see another beautiful sunset to the west over the Tucson Mountains and full-moon rising over the Rincon Mountains.

With the skies partly cloudy, we couldn’t help but ponder the “what if’s” of more clouds moving in. The sun continued to occasionally peep through the broken clouds to the west, but the clouds to the east were minus the “broken” adjective.

The amount of clouds created a photographic challenge, but not to be daunted, I persisted capturing a few photos, all be they are dark and ominous — probably of things to come.

Phil playing his harp and Tim taking photos — Images by kenne

With the sun setting, and minus the expected moonlight, darkness was coming on quickly. Having a bite to eat and some water, while Phil serenaded us on his harp, we decided to start the hike down the ridge. The return pace was slow, as we stepped carefully down the steep slopes and navigated the many trail switchbacks. With little light, at times the footing was treacherous, and as fate would have it, on one of steep slopes, while placing my right foot on solid rock ground, I place my left foot on what turned out to be loose gravel — down I went, quickly pulling my camera to the front of my body. Because of the downward angle of the trail, it was a short fall on my butt. However, my backward momentum carried me into a large prickly pear cactus, an encounter not expected. Even with three layers of clothing, many of the prickly pear spines penetrated my upper left arm. I’m now award that this cactus comes armed with two kinds of spines; large, smooth, fixed spines and small, hairlike prickles called glochids. Removing my wind-breaker removed many of the glochids, but most of the large spines remained in my arm, since our only source of light was a flashlight. So, the spine removal task became Joy’s upon my return home. What’s the saying, “There’s always a first time for everything.” So be it! In case you are wondering, we are already considering another moonlit hike. 


5 responses to “Hiking Blackett’s Ridge In The Light Of The Full Moon

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  1. Quite a hike… no, I am not laughing… well, maybe a little. – Hope you are ok. Great photos .

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Those who adventure must sometimes expect an adventure, and an adventure is not an adventure unless the plot turns dark at some point along the way. Puns intended. The reward are some great photographs that help illustrate the adventure in the old eighteenth and nineteenth century style.


  3. Reblogged this on Becoming is Superior to Being and commented:

    FEBRUARY 11, 2012.


  4. Kenne, I’m not sure I could do hike like this anymore. Maybe, but rough ground gives me trouble these days. I’m glad to see this since it brings up memories.


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