In Arizona Santa Rides a Horse, Not a Reindeer

 I love the unexpected experiences I often find on a hike.


The Watson Lake trail was just part of a great weekend. But before I elaborate on the hike I want to share what happened the night before the hike.

Clutch and I had some friends invite us to Prescott to spend the weekend with them in their wonderfully private cabin located a mile above the town of Prescott.

The first night we attended the 27th Annual Acker musical festival in the heart of downtown Prescott, where thousands of brave souls ventured out in the bone-chilling weather, to hop in and out of shops and bars to hear a wide variety of bands, solo artists, and watch show performers.  Several stores enticed visitors to enter with offering warm drinks, cookies, and seats for those who wanted to stay awhile to enjoy the band featured in their store.

Each store/bar was a sea of elbows, craned necks, a welcome abundance of body heat, and smiles that exuded the joy of the season! I loved the fact that all donations collected went to scholarships for performing art students. I also enjoyed getting my picture taken with Santa, without having to wait in line at the mall and trying to make my way through a swarm of children. 🙂

The morning after the festival we woke up to these beautiful views and gourmet breakfast!

There is nothing quite like staying in a quaint cabin and being treated like royalty by good friends. Many thanks to Jerene and Norm Watson for one of the most relaxing and fun weekends I’ve ever had!

Now, onto the great hike where I learned a little more about Santa Claus. As we pulled into the trail-head parking lot we saw a group of horseback riders posing for a picture. When I realized these were no ordinary riders I rushed over to get my own picture, but arrived just in time to watch the group disperse. Disappointed yet eager to embark upon a new adventure, I quickly joined my friends to begin our hike. I took several photos as we made our way around Watson Lake.

If you look closely at the picture of myself and my friend you will notice something unusual in the background.

A group of horse back riders from the ” Just Horsing Around” Club were on their special annual trip. This was the group I missed getting a picture of from the trail-head earlier!

Every year they deck their horses and themselves in Christmas garb and hand out candy canes to those sharing the trail, as they make their way to a tree in the wilderness to decorate for the holiday! They invited us to join them in the decorating event. Unfortunately we were not able to, but it was a grand adventure just getting to see this group and hear about their annual tradition. It really made me want to gather up a group of friends and create a fun annual idea! (Still working on it.)

So hurry and get a few good hikes in before Christmas and maybe you will get to glimpse Santa too!

Love unexpected adventures!




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