A new season begins for Sun Lakes Hiking Club

Brian Hill on a 13th century medieval bridge while hiking the Camino de Santiago in Spain.

Brian Hill on a 13th century medieval bridge while hiking the Camino de Santiago in Spain.

Roberta Arpan

As the snowbirds are flocking back to Sun Lakes, hike leaders are busy planning another exciting year of outdoor adventure for the Sun Lakes Hiking Club.

The official welcome back picnic and first club meeting will be held at noon on Friday, November 6 at Oasis Park in Sun Lakes Country Club. Members, their guests and potential members are welcome to come and learn more about the activities planned for the 2015-2016 hiking season. Chicken, soft drinks, plates and silverware are provided; members are asked to bring a dish to share and folding lawn chairs are always needed.

The SLHC offers three levels of hiking each week to suit the fitness level and expectations of the participants. The retread hikes are offered on Mondays for beginning hikers and those who want less strenuous hikes. A second hike is scheduled each Monday for those who want to stay in shape and challenge their abilities. Wednesday hikes are a compromise of the other two hiking options.

The 14 hikes on the roster for November are listed below. For a more complete and up-to-date description, visit the club’s website at http://meetup.com/Sun-Lakes-Hiking-Club. Unless otherwise noted, carpools meet at the Cottonwood parking lot east of the tennis courts at 7:45 a.m. for an 8:00 a.m. departure. If you have not hiked with the club, you must contact the hike leader before the day of the hike.

Monday hikes:

November 2 (retread). Dynamite Trail in San Tan Regional Park. Leaders Scott and Linda Metz; 339-0313.

November 2. Goat Hill Loop from Desert Foothills Trailhead in South Mountain Park. Leader Trudy Alexander; 895-8418. Please note hikers need to be at the parking lot at 6:45 a.m. for a 7:00 a.m. departure.

November 9 (retread). Cat Peaks Loop/Cats Peak Pass in Usery Park. Mike Josephson; 248-496-5369.

November 9. Pima Canyon Trail in the Pusch Ridge Wilderness, Tucson. Leader Doug Chirhart; 883-2834. Please note hikers need to be at the parking lot at 6:45 a.m. for a 7:00 a.m. departure.

November 16 (retread). Christensen Trail, North Mountain Visitor Center/Phoenix Mountain Preserve. Leader Stu Frost; 883-8539.

November 16. Fossil Springs Trail No. 18 in the Mogollon Rim west of Strawberry. Leader Marilyn Harkins; 883-7173. Please note hikers need to be at the parking lot at 6:45 a.m. for a 7:00 a.m. departure.

November 23 (retread). San Tan to Hedgehog Trails in San Tan Mountains. Leaders Judy Mical; 883-8686 and Elsie Hagen; 952-240-6704.

November 23. Idaho Pass/Blue Ridge Loop in the Goldfield Mountains. Leaders Steve and Mary Martz; 317-750-0663.

November 30 (retread). Overton Loop in Cave Creek Regional Park. Leaders Al and Ginny Metz; 895-1868.

November 30. Hope Camp/Quilter Trail in Saguaro National Park east of Tucson. Leader Bud Tasch; 802-2836. Please note hikers need to be at the parking lot at 6:45 a.m. for a 7:00 a.m. departure.

Wednesday hikes:

November 4. Parker Pass in the Superstition Mountain Wilderness. Leader Rex Bunkley; 883-1556.

November 11. Deer Creek Trail in the Mazatzal Wilderness. Leaders Vicki Deken; 802-7716 and Lou Maldonado; 525-4100.

November 18. Hackberry Spring in the Superstition Mountain Wilderness. Leader Tom Chase; 895-7819.

November 25. Pima Canyon-Ridgeline-National Trail-Rugged Ridge Loop in South Mountain Park. Leader Dennis Harkins; 883-7173.

There are two additional upcoming events to put on your calendar. On November 12 Marilyn and Dennis Harkins (883-7173) will lead an Orientation Field Trip for new members at Veteran’s Oasis Park in Chandler. Participants will learn safe hiking habits and will have the opportunity to practice using the club’s walkie-talkie units. Carpools will meet at the Cottonwood Parking Lot at 8:00 a.m. On November 19 there will be a Hike Leader Meeting held from 2:00-4:00 p.m. in the Phoenix Room at Cottonwood. It is mandatory that hike leaders attend this meeting or a similar meeting scheduled for January 21, 2016. Also, if you missed the SLHC table at the Open Houses in Cottonwood and Oakwood, you have one more opportunity. SLHC will have a booth at the Sun Lakes Country Club Open House on November 14.

The tip of the month is for hikers who use a water bladder in their backpack. When you unpack your gear after a hike, dry your water bladder as best you can and store it in the freezer until you need to use it again so that bacteria/mold will not grow.

For more information about the SLHC, visit the club’s website listed above; contact club President Brian Hill at 802-1050 or e-mail [email protected]