The feel of the Bristlecone trees sculpted by wind and rain is smooth and cool to the touch. One post did not seem like enough of a story about my love for the trees growing on Mt. Charleston. They are pure joy to my sense of vision and I cannot get enough of them. The hike up North Loop trail could be considered moderate to extreme depending on the weather the day of the hike. Climbing up this mountain in the snow is a bit treacherous and it is important to have the right gear and know the trail very well. Luckily we have an amazing dog who is an excellent trail guide! Also, we have hiked the switchback mountain pass many times. I absolutely love the views up there and this one plateau where we relax before going up the ultra steep parts. On our way up, we stop and smell as many Ponderosa Pines as possible.

These majestic trees smell of Butterscotch if you ever get the chance to take a whiff. I highly recommend it. A dear friend of ours taught us about this on my first hike with her, on this very trail. We later learned about how the color of the bark changes when it is struck by lightning and how orange it can get. These trees are tall and fascinating. They remind me of the redwoods in California or the giant Sequoias, however, not as tall. They are the closest tree I can get to feeling home out here in the desert. This is probably why I like this trail so much, because it feels like home. The smells up the path are out of this world and there is hardly anyone hiking on it when we go. Hoping this post inspires you all to get outside and adventure in your own home towns, cities, countries, etc. We have a beautiful world out there and it is just waiting to be seen. Thank you for reading and have a Happy Weekend! Oh, and another dear friend bought me my first coffee! I will tag her on Facebook. Truly thankful for all of you reading these blogs and following my art journey. Thank you for inspiring me daily!

-Karen Hilliard

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