Monday, November 7, 2011


Last week Rock (one of the guitar players in my band) wanted to have a barbecue. The leaves are turning colors and it is just starting to snow in northern Arizona, so Bill and I suggested that we have the barbecue up in Payson. Bill and I headed up on Friday. Rock and his family, Devin (the other guitar player in my band) and his friend Daniel, and Devin’s parents came up on Saturday.

When Bill and I drove up on Friday night, there was no snow on the ground. It was cold and windy and a storm seemed to be blowing in. On Saturday morning we woke up to freshly falling snow. It kept falling for a couple of hours. 

Bill walking up the cabin driveway.
The cabin front yard.
The cabin.
My car covered in snow :)
The backyard of the cabin.

Bill took these awesome pictures of the squirrel and birds on the bird feeder.

The back of the cabin when the clouds parted.

We met Rock, Melinda (Rock’s wife), and their three kids at the Safeway down in Payson and drove back up to the cabin. As soon as we got to the cabin, the kids started playing in the snow. The snow ball war didn’t stop until halfway through Sunday!

The snow ball carnage.

While we were waiting for Devin, Daniel, and Devin’s parents, we headed down to the Tonto Fish Hatchery:

Leaves frozen to the sidewalk.
One of the trees that had turned colors next to the creek.
Some of the fish in a young stage in one of the tanks.
Beautiful view from outside the fish hatchery visitor's center.
The different buildings in the picture are the holding tanks for trout in different stages of growth.
If you look closely, you can see several big trout in this pond. You can buy food to feed these ones and they all swarm around the food in the water. This pond is right next to the creek where they release some of the trout for fishing. They also use the trout they raise here to stock a lot of the lakes in Arizona and the Lee's Ferry area of the Colorado river up by the Grand Canyon.
The creek right by the hatchery with snow.
A picturesque view on the way back to the cabin.

Everyone else arrived right when we got back from the hatchery, and Bill got to grilling steaks:

Daniel and Devin by the grill. 
A tree that had turned colors for fall down the street.
The two below are Bill's. Notice anything interesting in the first picture? Comment below if you see it :)

When the snow started to melt, it fell in giant sheets off the roof onto the front planter area. This then became premium snow ball ammunition :)

After a day out in the cold we had an awesome dinner:

This corn was made using this crazy shucking technique found in this video:


Devin's mom made a potato cheese bake. Oh, how I love cheese! She also made an AMAZING Tiramisu, which I unfortunately did not photograph.

After a huge dinner we took a walk and then came back for some jammage. I played the pan flute. Yep. Anybody who took woodwind tech with me in college probably has a good idea of how that went…
I also played the box drum. Literally a drum made out of the space heater box. Drumming is also not my forte either LOL.

Devin and Daniel jamming.

The cabin seemed to be the room without time that night. I’m not sure if it was the overcast, snowy weather, the early winter dark, or just the mountain air, but we all kept thinking it was 11 p.m. when it was really seven. Time passed incredibly slowly. Somehow, though, we still managed to stay up until around one in the morning.

The next morning, we woke up and had elk roast for breakfast (AWESOME!!). After that we headed up to the Mogollon Rim.
Elk roast!
A snowman someone had built up on the rim.
The rim with snow.
The view of the highway below.

Ice crystals on a tree.
One of the semi-frozen ponds by the roadway.
The rim is extremely windy all year round. Devin and Daniel decided to walk with their backs to the rim so they could hide their faces from the freezing cold wind.
One of the strange twisted and stunted Ponderosa Pines on the rim. The trees closest to the edge are shaped by the constant wind.
The same tree in July.

Frozen grass.

White trees against a gray sky.
Part of the path along the rim was frozen.
Some more gnarled trees.

A close up of the ice on a Ponderosa Pine.

 Snow ball fight in the parking lot of the vista point.
 Rock and Daniel
 Rock just threw a snow ball at Devin.
 Devin throwing a snow ball at Daniel.
The rim road.

I was sad to go back home, but happy to be warm. Devin's parents headed back to Phoenix on Saturday night, so Devin and Daniel had to cram in my Honda Fit on the way back. In order to fit everyone and all of their stuff in the car, Daniel and Devin had to sit in the back seat first while we handed them things to cram around their feet, between them, and on their laps. In the picture, they have two guitars laying across them. After loading them in, I sat in the passenger seat and Bill gave me things to cram around my feet. That's the trash on my lap to take down to Payson. Awesome. I think it's time for a roof rack!

It's a Honda "Fit." Har har.

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