A few weeks ago we had met a couple from Calgary at the Theatre and after the show they invited us back to their Condo for Pizza. They had mentioned a few places where they have visited and one of them was South Mountain which provides a great view of Phoenix from the top of the mountain. As there wasn't any hiking involved I figured I could hobble around while the others explored. The weather hasn't been great the last few days, lots of cloud, rain and cool temps but as we set out to pick up Audrey and Laurie from their hotel the clouds started to breakup. Not great Arizona weather but at least we weren't going to get wet.
South Mountain Park is located directly south of downtown Phoenix and is an easy drive just off the interstate. At more than 16,000 acres South Mountain Park/Preserve is one of the largest municipally operated parks in the country. It boasts 51 miles of primary trails for horseback riding, hiking and mountain biking for all ability levels. Being on crutches does limit ones ability to participate in any of those activities. From the park's main entrance, we drove up Summit Road 5.5 miles to Dobbins Lookout and spectacular valleywide views. Unfortunately the clouds and the smog made for poor visibility and worse pictures.
I had used the GPS in the truck and after one false start which took us in entirely the wrong direction a second attempt got us at least to the base of the mountain. Then we ended up in someones driveway. At that point we pulled our our Phones and used Google Maps to get us to the proper road and to the Visitors Centre, which was closed due to construction. We kept on driving up Summit Road which is a long, narrow winding switchback eventually getting us to the peak.
With my support team in place I hobbled off the asphalt over some sand and rocks to a bench with a view. Lori, Audrey and Laurie headed off to explore a bit while I snapped some pictures and enjoyed the view. While in the Valley of the Sun you don't really notice the smog until you look to the horizon over downtown Phoenix, particularly from an elevated position. Then you really notice the impact of all those cars. Too bad. Perhaps in 20 years we will all be driving electric and the great views will be back.
|Phoenix is at 1000 ft so Summit Road took us up another 1300 ft.|
|Audrey and Lori.|
Audrey is Lori's regular walking partner at Birds Hill Park
I really didn't adjust the exposure very well.
|Greater Phoenix down below.|
|Downtown Phoenix. |
The downtown skyscraper area really isn't very big.
Mostly sprawling development, housing 4.2 million people.
|Eastern Phoenix looking out over Scottsdale, Tempe and Mesa.|
|Young love. |
We left South Mountain and had time to kill before dinner so we decided to head over to Southwest Pottery just to show Audrey and Laurie the huge selection of pottery available. Unfortunately we were in rush hour traffic and as we got close to our destination we realized we were just going to get there and they would be closing for the day. We decided to reprogram the GPS and head to Organ Stop Pizza for dinner.
We had heard about Organ Stop Pizza from a number of people in the RV Park and were told it was a must see. It is basically a large restaurant specializing in Pizza but the main attraction is the huge Wurlitzer Pipe Organ.
I took the following info off of their website. I understand very little of the technical aspects of the organ but it was one huge sucker and put out some pretty impressive sound. The theme to Star Wars was pretty dramatic.
"Organ Stop’s Wurlitzer theatre organ was built for the Denver Theatre and was installed in 1927. The organ was used regularly until the early 1930s. With the advent of the talking picture and the 1930s depression, the organ was rarely heard. It was silenced when a fire in the auditorium caused extensive damage to the organ’s relay.
|The outside of the OSP with a lengthy lineup to get in.|
Actually better to come later as Snowbirds eat early.
When we left there were lots of empty seats and no lineup.
|Lots of glitz on the organ. |
The platform it sits on rises up out of a pit and it rotates.
|Just some of the 6000 pipes.|
|The restaurant seats hundreds, all on long narrow tables and long benches. |
It was packed. Not the easiest to negotiate on crutches.
Had a hard time finding 4 spaces and definitely
did not want to do the stairs to get to the second floor.
|Kind of reminded me of Winnipeg Arena, |
40 years ago, doing Octoberfest.
|An Iphone does not handle the glare of spotlights very well. |
As noted above the key board is extensive.
|The important word being love.|
|Lori's newest Amazon purchase.|
2 Mexican stars for our patio at home.
On Friday I made an appointment with a Physiotherapist in Gold Canyon. I wasn't very happy with the lack of information that the Hospital ER provided me or the instructions for rehab. The ER Doctors hands on physical exam of my ankle was almost non-existent and their instructions for rehab which they provided me in written form upon us leaving was so vague as to be useless. After 7 days and still not being able to walk on it without it popping I thought a physiotherapist might provide me a better action plan for recovery.
I made an appointment with Michael at Vitality Physical Therapy in Gold Canyon. He got me in and did a thorough physical exam of my ankle, lots of questions about how it happened, how it felt when I moved it in different directions, etc. He provided me with a detailed explanation of the structure of the ankle and gave me an exercise routine to follow. He also said that if I had any questions I could email him and he would provide followup without charging me. Cost me $85. and I should be able to claim that on my Sun Life Medical Insurance that we have back home. I doubt the Travel Medical will cover it. Even if I don't get reimbursed it was money well spent.
Not much planned for the next few days. Wednesday we are off to see Canyon Lake on Dolly's Steamboat so will provide a report on that excursion.