Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Sledding on Mount Lemmon

It was in the 60 degrees on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in Tucson. It was a fantastic day to have off of school. I celebrated by going with some friends to Mount Lemmon-part of the Catalina Mountains. Mt. Lemmon is located right outside of Tucson, about 7,000 feet elevation.
Mount Lemmon - part of the Catalina Mountains-outside Tucson, AZ

It is named for Sara Allen Plummer Allen, the first woman to climb it in the late 1800s. Lots of snow and just perfect for a day of sledding, which I haven't done in years, but one doesn't lose the touch-it's all in the steering and staying on the sled all the way to the bottom.
Here is the beginning of the climb up Mt. Lemmon.

Looking back down at the Tucson area.

Still warm and dry here. No sight of snow yet.

But further up and around another curve or two and SNOW!!!!

 Now, do I remember the tricks to staying on the sled, avoiding the bumps and flying off, and escaping the trees?
Here I am before I am wet with snow. The first climb up. 
Notice I don't even have my mittens on yet as the cold Wisconsin cold is not here-but the wet snow for packing for snowballs and making the snow icy on top for fast sledding is.

The climb up the hill.  

FLYING DOWN-I did miss the tree!

Landed at the bottom in a few branches but not bad. Each slide down I made it farther. It's like riding a bike- you don't forget how to do it. 
As kids ( 7 of us in our family) we would always walk to Kolbeck's Hill with our friends in the neighborhood and sled and tobaggon for hours. We were very cold and snowpants, and mittens were always wet at the end. But lots of fun and memories!
Climbing back up for another trip down!

After several snowball fights, touch football in the snow and many trips down the hill my feet were thoroughly wet and cold. Time to move on up the mountain to Ski Valley and the little town up here-Summerhaven.
The ski lift in Ski Valley was very active today. No sign of snow melting here.

Then further up to the only town on Mt. Lemmon-Summerhaven. I am sure it is beautiful and peaceful in the summer but the winter beauty of this little town snuggled into the mountain side was just as outstanding. I could picture Santa and his elves living here.

We made a stop at the Cookie Cabin.

They have the largest cookie ever so we got one fudge brownie cookie and shared-only fingers needed. Sorry, I didn't get a picture of it because it was just eaten too fast. Everyone was hungry after all of our fun in the snow.
The Cookie Cabin and the gift shop next door to it were both burnt down in the 1990's fire up here but they were quickly rebuilt as business is very brisk.
Here are some interesting signs I read while at the Cookie Cabin waiting for our fudge brownie to be baked.

After the cookie it was time to head back down the hill to the city of Tucson. Here is the climb down.

This is worth another trip back up-during Spring or summer for a picnic among the beautiful green trees. A chance to escape the desert for awhile. If you get a chance -take a trip up Mt. Lemmon during any of the four seasons. You won't ever forget its beauty!

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