Annual Hike With Jim, Deb and The Invisible Man

We seem to have developed  several traditions here at Canyon Vistas. One of them is an almost annual small group hike from First Water trailhead to Canyon Lake (we missed last year to do the FlatIron as a group instead). It’s a one way hike (unless you’re a maniac and want to do 15 miles in one day) so we have to make arrangements for a ride from the Lake back to our truck. Fortunately we have been able to convince Cheryl to take the drive out to the lake while we try and get Jim lost in the desert. This year she had some company on the drive as Dana had injured his back last week taking a tumble off the trail when we did the 5057 hike, and couldn’t make the journey with us today.

So, this year it was just the 4 of us trekking for just under 6 hours and 7.5 miles. It turned out that  we picked a perfect day for the hike as the temperatures and winds have been quite high for several days, but both backed off nicely for today.

We did start off pretty early in the morning, and this was the full moon that greeted me when I went out to start loading up our packs. Anytime that I’m up when it’s pitch dark is not necessarily my favourite time, but I can’t complain about the view.


We got to the trailhead just before 8:00 and set up a group shot shortly after we started. As Dana was missing I decided to pencil him in. I don’t think I got the goatee just right though.


It turned out to be another wonderful day for a hike, and with temps in the low 70’s it was the first time in a few days that (some of us) wore long sleeves and long pants .


Debbie managed to spot an Arch that we have now planned to explore next year.IMG_2513

She also managed to spot a new decoration that would look good outside her residence here in Canyon Vistas. Maybe it was a good thing that Dana had a sore back, or he might have been carrying it back to the truck. The skeleton is approximately 15 feet high.IMG_2517

There really weren’t a lot of flowers showing on the hike, but the Cactus are starting to bust out nicely all over.


Shortly after 1:00 we were walking down (straight down) the hill to Canyon Lake and a much anticipated meal and beverage.IMG_2552IMG_2569

It was a great day spent with friends, although we missed Dana, and he really missed being on the hike. At least he was able to drag himself into Cheryl’s van and meet us at the restaurant. And surprisingly my boots managed to make it all the way through the hike without falling apart. Gorilla Glue and Gorilla Tape work wonders!

In other events recently our softball season is over and for the umpteenth time we finished second in our league. I don’t quite know what we can do to get over the stigma of being second best, but at least we had a great time doing it.


We followed up our season with a party in the pool here in the park, and a boisterous game of water volleyball. Sylvia started out just wanting to be the umpire and stay dry, but soon picked up some rather colourful nicknames including The Ball Chick, as she had to chase our wayward volleyballs all over the pool area.


Following the full day of ball we hustled back to the park and attended the Hiking Club’s annual potluck dinner and celebration. About 80 of us attended the soiree and gift drawing, although the best part of the night might just have been eating Donna’s Nanaimo Bars, what a treat.

We all bought 50/50 tickets on the various prizes that were being given away as a fundraiser for the club. True to form, Sylvia and I never won a thing, but didn’t go home empty handed as one kind soul felt sorry for Sylvia and gave her one of his winnings. See, it helps to be a whiner.IMG_2494

We also had a special time at the Church service this week where we said thanks and farewell to the Choir Director, Hank who is stepping down just as he is about to turn 90. Sylvia and several others joined the choir for the service to show love and support to Hank for his many years of directing. The choir sure sounded great, and Hank was overjoyed.IMG_20160320_101310

The cactus flowers here in the park are really starting to show nicely, and we get lots of chances to see them on our walks.


We’ve only got a couple of events still on the Calendar before we depart on April 3rd. A few of our friends and neighbours have already left the park, and many more will have left by the time we leave. It’s a strange and sad feeling to see the park empty out, but it just means we’re getting closer to getting back together near the end of the year.


One response to “Annual Hike With Jim, Deb and The Invisible Man

  1. Really nice blog, Rod. Loved the pictures and the flowers.


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