Winter in Chicago tends to overstay it’s welcome and this spring has been especially dreary. My friend Christine and I had had enough and booked last-minute flights to Arizona to escape the cold. We thrived in all of our “basic” glory by hiking, brunching and working on our tans. The perfect vacation trifecta if you ask me.
We started the weekend by hiking the Piestewa Peak Summit Trail on Saturday morning around 7:45am and the trail was fairly crowded as you would expect on a weekend. This 1.9 mile hike was gradual in spots and steeper in others. It took us about 1 hour and 15 minutes to get to the top with frequent stops for water and photo ops. I hadn’t hiked since the Inca Trial last spring and my legs and lungs were burning most of the way!
We hiked Camelback Mountain on Monday morning assuming it would be less crowded on a weekday. We started the Echo Trail at around 6:30am and we were in the shade most of the way which made the hike a lot easier than it would’ve been in the heat.
We tried to do some research beforehand but honestly, we had no idea what to expect…and we definitely didn’t anticipate just how much CLIMBING we would do to reach the top. The trail is described as “extremely difficult” and I definitely wouldn’t recommend it to anyone who just wants to hike/walk. This was my favorite trail because it was a slow and steady climb to the top, using you arms to pull you up and lower you down most of the way. I would recommend wearing shoes with a quality grip and a camelback for water so your hands are free. You’ll need them!
Not far from where we stayed was The Henry Restaurant. A very Instagram-able brunch establishment and SO worth checking out. The coffee was excellent and the food even better. Put your name in and grab a coffee from the to-go counter while you wait for your table. We went here twice in two days if that tells you how great it was.
After our hike up Piestewa Peak, I needed to refresh and replenish from the heat so we went to Nektar Juice Bar. I highly recommend the Pink Flamingo smoothie – so tasty without being overwhelmingly sweet and a super cute bright pink color. How adorable is this?
Are we basic?
Absolutely. And I loved every minute of it. When you come back from a trip feeling recharged and relaxed, you must’ve done something right. It was a perfect weekend getaway from gloomy Chicago and I can’t wait to go back and explore some more of Scottsdale.