Winter Road Trip Preview: Walking in the Desert Light

South Rim of the Grand Canyon in snow

Join me today as I share a preview of my winter road trip and where some of my walks took me. With a camera and phone in hand, I took loads of photos on my daily walks. I managed to walk over 10,000 steps a day as recorded by my Fitbit. I needed to with all the good food I ate!

We spent 18 days traveling to Southern California, Northern Arizona, and Las Vegas, Nevada during the Christmas and New Year holidays.

Christmas in San Diego

After an eleven-hour drive to San Diego where we would spend our first week of the trip, we enjoyed time with my daughter and her boyfriend. They graciously let us park our trailer in their driveway and hook up to electricity. We loved having our own sleeping space in our trailer and it made a temporary escape space once the whole family arrived at her house for Christmas day.

We spent Christmas Eve at my stepdaughter’s new apartment in Pacific Beach. Even the kite surfers were out enjoying a cold but sunny afternoon as we walked along Sail Bay.

Kite Surfer Pacific Beach
Kite Surfer in Sail Bay, Pacific Beach

Arizona Walks

We traveled on to North Phoenix, Arizona where we met up with Ingrid and her husband at the Pioneer RV Park. This time we stayed six nights and enjoyed a lot more of what Phoenix has to offer. Ah, those sunny winter days! Later in the week, Ingrid and I visited the Desert Botanical Garden and walked the gorgeous trails.

Cactus Light in Botanical Garden
Cactus Backlight in Botanical Garden

“Wild Rising” was the theme with more than 1000 sculptures adorning the park.

Desert Botanical Gardens
Walking through the Botanical Gardens

A Check Off the Ole’ Bucket List

While staying in North Phoenix, early Monday, December 28, we drove three hours one way to … drum roll please…the Grand Canyon!

Yes, I shed a tear as I walked the short distance to the magnificent sight of the canyon! The light from the snow provided amazing contrasts to the warm red and orange rocks. This was one of my first images!

South Rim of the Grand Canyon in snow
South Rim of the Grand Canyon

Unlike last year’s US government shutdown of national parks, the park was alive and well with a few brave tourists bundled up for the cold, wintery conditions. Even our dogs got their walk in on the South Rim trail.

Winter in South Rim of Grand Canyon
Cold Winter’s Day in South Rim of Grand Canyon

On our drive back to North Phoenix, there was snow on the ground, but thankfully no ice on the roads.

If you are new to my blog, you can read more about our crazy 2019 Winter Road Trip.

For the rest of January, I will share more of my photos from the road trip.

That just about does it for this post, which is inspired in part by Jo’s Monday Walk, Cee’s New On the Hunt for Joy Challenge and Becky B’s January Squares Photo Challenge.

A hearty shout-out and thanks to Hugh for hosting Sunday Stills while I took my break.

Sunday Stills resumes right here next week! I hope to see you back with your creative ideas and images.

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Sunday Stills: Unexpectedly #Frozen

Ice Frozen in Fountain

This week’s theme for Sunday Still is frozen! I figure we can endure one more week of winter scenes and freezing weather in some places, then start dreaming of spring!

This week’s images demonstrate snow and ice appearing in unlikely places at unexpected times of the year.

Most of you already know of my slightly frozen winter road trip to the so-called warm American Southwest.

Upon our arrival to Sedona we strolled around and came across this frozen fountain outside nearby art galleries. At this point, it was cold but had not snowed yet. Despite the frozen water, some of it was still flowing. Photo credit goes to my husband!

Ice Frozen in Fountain

The next morning, we experienced unexpected snow in Sedona depicted here by my happy husband (he liked the snow for a few minutes). We did pack for snowy conditions, fortunately, but this much snow really caught us and everyone else by surprise!

Man in the snow
Hans enjoying the Sedona snow

This second image shows a beautiful winter scene outside my brother-in-law’s home in Spokane, Washington over Veteran’s Day weekend, in mid-November. We expected the temperatures to be cold there, but this was the first snowfall of the season and it arrived early for this area.

Spokane Snow

This poor daffodil was unexpectedly snowed upon in early May in South Lake Tahoe. The day before was a warm, sunny day as we left Sacramento. The snow started in the early afternoon and covered the ground for several hours. And to think I entertained the idea of bringing my stand-up paddleboard along!

Daffodils in the snow
Unhappy frozen daffodils

Whatever your feelings for snow scenes and all things frozen, the subject matter makes for beautiful photos!

“Only mountains can feel the frozen warmth of the sun through snow’s gentle caress on their peaks”
― Munia Khan

This week, show us your version of frozen for Sunday Stills!

My sympathies to all who are enduring freezing weather conditions. Stay warm and safe!