A Scenic Mountain Journey to the Top of Arizona: The Kachina Peaks Wilderness, Flagstaff, AZ

With sweltering heat and high triple digit temperatures in Phoenix, it’s the perfect time to head to up north to get outdoors and experience Arizona’s beautiful and lush high mountain forests and wilderness areas. For a wonderful and scenic day trip and easy hike, take a journey to the top of Arizona by hiking the Kachina Trail, in the Kachina Peaks Wilderness, Flagstaff, Arizona.

A Scenic Mountain Journey to the Top of Arizona: The Kachina Peaks Wilderness, Flagstaff, AZ

Located high up in the San Francisco peaks, sits Arizona’s tallest peak, Mt. Humphreys which rises to an elevation of 12, 643 feet which you can climb to the top of on the Mt. Humphrey’s Trail, one of the most challenging hikes in all of Arizona. However, if you’re up for more of an easier day hike instead, then I highly recommend checking out the beautiful Kachina Trail, which is also located in the Kachina Peaks Wilderness and like the Mt. Humphrey’s Trail, is also located at Arizona’s Snow Bowl Ski Resort and if you’re up for the added adventure, you can take a very scenic sky ride right up to the top of Arizona at elevation, 11,500 feet, for a spectacular and amazing panoramic view of all the surrounding Flagstaff and Kachina Peaks Wilderness area, without having to climb it yourself too!

To get to the Kachina Trail from Phoenix you’ll want to head out of town on I-17 north to Flagstaff. We left Phoenix at 9am on a Saturday morning and arrived in Flagstaff at around 11:30am. The drive from Phoenix to Flagstaff is roughly about 2.5 hours and 148 miles. Once you arrive in Flagstaff, the freeway ends and you will exit onto 89A north. Follow 89A through town till you come to route 180 north Snow Bowl Ski Resort, then make a left. You’ll take route 180 for about another 30 minutes till you reach FR 516 and the turn off for Snow Bowl Ski Resort and turn right. The drive along FR 516 is really beautiful and heavily forested as you quickly wind up in elevation from 7000 feet up to 9000 feet. Be aware though that there is little bit of road construction going but it’s not too bad. You’ll want to just take it slow and be on the lookout for wildlife because we saw a couple of deer off to the right in an open meadow area about midway.

Once you reach the lodge, on your right you will see the sign for the Kachina Trail where you’ll park in the Snow Bowl parking lot. At about 9,200 feet, the trail begins a somewhat level but rocky decent, traversing across the San Francisco Peaks through beautiful Aspens forests, winding through open meadows and offering break throughs here and there for gorgeous vistas of the surrounding Flagstaff area that are absolutely magnificent. We journeyed along on this gorgeous trail, noticing only a slight drop in elevation, about 600 feet. Although the trail is rated “easy” but due to the rocky conditions and the high level of elevation, I would … Read More

Enjoy a Panoramic Tour of Arizona’s Natural Grandeur: Hike the Woodchute Mountain Wilderness, Jerome

With rising temperatures and record breaking heat in the Arizona desert, the summer months are the perfect time for heading up north to higher elevations, 7000ft or higher, where the temperatures are cooler and you can get outdoors again to enjoy more of the natural beauty and diversity that is state of Arizona and its terrain. For a quick and easy summer day trip and a quiet, less crowded, easy-moderate hike with breathtaking panoramic views of Arizona, I recommend hiking the Woodchute Trail, in the Woodchute Mountain Wilderness, near Jerome.

Enjoy a Panoramic Tour of Arizona's Natural Grandeur: Hike the Woodchute Mountain Wilderness, Jerome

Starting out from Phoenix, you’ll want to take I-17 north till you reach the exit for Route 260 West, Cottonwood/ Clarkdale & Jerome. We started out around 8:30 am on a weekday so the traffic and road conditions were pretty good. We noticed there seemed to be a lot of Arizona Highway patrol cars everywhere so be very careful to watch your speed. After a few short stops along the way, we arrived in the small town of Cottonwood at around 10:30am, made a left onto route 89A South, and followed the signs for Jerome. On 89A South, you’ll begin a winding ascent up in elevation from 3000 feet up all the way up to 5000 feet, with some really beautiful views of the surrounding Verde Valley behind you.

We arrived in the historic town of Jerome and after a short break to stretch our legs, we continued on our journey heading south on 89A, now called the “Mingus Mountain Scenic Byway”. With many tight twisting, hairpin curves and a winding ascent up in elevation now from 5000 feet to 7000 feet, the views along the way are absolutely spectacular! This very scenic drive from Jerome to the top of Mingus Mountain is roughly about 8 miles. Once you reach the top you’ll see a sign for “Mingus Recreation Area” off to the left. Turn right, then drive a short ways until you come to FR 106, then take that for about a mile until you come to the Woodchute Trail. The road is all dirt but good and passable for regular vehicles if you take it slow. However, if you have a high clearance 2WD or a 4WD, that’d be better.

After arriving at the trailhead by noon we set out on our hike on the Woodchute Trail. It was a really nice, quiet and serene hike which wound through thick ponderosa pine forest. The elevation ranged from 7000 feet to roughly 7600 feet with only a moderate, gentle climb. The temperature was roughly in the low 80’s with a light breeze to keep you cool. Starting out on the trail we noticed some signs of a burn, though not too bad. What I liked best about this hike was the spectacular panoramic mountain top views it offered. Only a short ways down the trail and off to your right you’ll see the view down below of 89A winding up to the top of Mingus Mountain, but as well, … Read More

Reduce Your Costs Of Travel

When you are tired of your busy schedule, you always think of going out for some fresh air. Having an outing with your friends and family members can double the enjoyment as long you are aware of the associated costs and various methods of reducing those costs. Many people don’t care about the expenditure they incur, but if you want to have an economical enjoyment, then you should take care of this factor as well.

Going on holiday always has a number of costs attached to it, but if you know some tricks and tactics, you can easily diminish this number. Before you go traveling anywhere, it’s best to look around online to see if you’re getting the best deal. There are plenty of places online that offer reduced price deals on popular hotels and campsite, so you can find the best one for where you’re going and save yourself quite a bit of money. Travel already costs a lot these days, so why not save yourself some money and do it online. Online booking also means that you’re saving money on your phone bill because you’re not calling faraway places to book. You also save money by not going to a travel agent. They always take a percentage as commission, so they amount your paying for your hotel or campsite is higher that it would be if you booked it yourself. So booking a place to stay while you’re traveling can save you a lot of money.

The more you research, the more methods you will find to reduce your travel cost.… Read More

How to Save Money When Travelling

Below are nine money saving tips you can apply at your destination next time you travel. Whether you are away for business or pleasure these tips will help you save while still enjoying all that the destination has to offer.

Tip 1: Eat breakfast at the hotel: If you get breakfast included in the price of your hotel, then take advantage of this. Eat a large breakfast and you will save money on snacks throughout the day. Take some of the breakfast away with you for eating later.

Tip 2: Buy snacks at a local grocery store: Buy fruits, chips and bars etc from a local grocery store and carry them with you during the day. This way you won’t be paying inflated prices at tourist attractions.

Tip 3: Eat at Street Vendors: Street vendors offer good quality local food, at reasonable prices. As a word of warning, we should say that most offer “good quality” food. Use your  you think that you may get sick don’t eat there. One of the best ways to judge is if you see locals eating there. If they aren’t and the sound of tourists wrenching isn’t far off, best to move along.

Tip 4: Eat where the locals eat: See how the locals live, and eat at local restaurants rather than at the hotel. You will get to experience the local culture and cuisine, and save money because you are not paying inflated hotel prices.

Tip 5: Eat lunch in your hotel room: We are not talking about using room service! We are talking about bring back food from a supermarket and eating it in a room. The break from the heat and the crowds of tourists may do you good as well!

Tip 6: Go for fast food rather than expensive restaurants: While it may not be that good for you, it still tastes good and you are unlikely get sick. So consider fast food as an alternative to restaurants. If you are staying for more than a few days it may not be feasible. Probably best in those locations where the local food is likely to cause some ‘Delhi belly’.

Tip 7: Only visit restaurants once a day: Save yourself some money and patronise restaurants once a day instead of for every meal.

Tip 8: Bottled water: Buy bottled water from the local grocery stores. If the water is safe to drink then consider tap water. Again, you are not paying inflated tourist prices if you do this.

Tip 9: Choose modest accommodation: You don’t need four or five star accommodation. Two or three stars are fine. Just make sure that the accommodation is safe and clean.… Read More

Ready for a Change? Consider Occupational Therapy Travel Jobs

Whether you’ve been in the healthcare industry for years or are newly graduated, you may be thinking about your job options in occupational therapy. Of course, there are always the standard options of working with a school, clinic, or other facility permanently, but it’s always good to do some research and figure out other job opportunities before committing. Currently, there are a number of occupational therapy travel jobs available, which provide enormous benefits and may suit your lifestyle better than a permanent position ever could!

Working as a traveling occupational therapist will allow you to explore a number of options that might not be offered with a permanent position at a hospital or school. If you’re looking for the freedom of change, to be able to travel, help people and work with different healthcare staff members, then a travel position just might be what you’re looking for! Whether you’re tired of your current job or are just graduating and weighing the options of travel assignments, it’s definitely worth researching and exploring all the possibilities.

Working as a traveling OT will allow you to expand your skill sets in ways not possible with a permanent position. With 6 week assignments, you’ll be able to work with different patients with varying problems, forcing you to refine and learn new techniques in order to handle each situation. Also, not only will you be working with a greater variety of patients from all over the world, but you’ll also be working with various healthcare staff members, which should give you the chance to further self-educate all while helping those in need.

Besides internal growth, there are a number of reasons to explore an occupational therapist travel job. For instance, you can obtain certain travel benefits such as great pay, insurance, a 401K, free housing and more! Travel positions are a great option for those looking for financial security with the freedom to travel and see the world. Think of all the possibilities you could explore!

If you’ve made a decision that you want to explore OT travel jobs a bit further, you should definitely research some travel therapy companies online and see what each has to offer before looking for a specific assignment. Many companies will allow you to search from a database of potential jobs, as well as speak with a consultant so that you can make the most informed decision possible. It’s easy to get started and working as a traveling OT can be the adventure of a lifetime!… Read More