Early Morning in the Desert

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I'm in Scottsdale, Arizona for a few days this week on business, so I arose early this morning to get in some time on the trails before my breakfast appointment...and before the heat got too intense. I couldn't believe it: just mid-May and it was 91 degrees yesterday!

I never knew this before visiting Scottsdale this week, but it has a fantastic trail network, called the City of Scottsdale McDowell-Sonoran Preserve.

This morning, I started from the Gateway Trailhead and ran along the Gateway Loop and Windgate Pass trails, but there are multiple trailheads to choose from and they are well marked and clearly mapped.

I started running before sunrise, but snapped a number of photos on the return leg, as the sun came up. I highly recommend this trail network to any runners visiting the Phoenix/Scottsdale area. The trails are gorgeous, and the scenery (especially the HUGE saguaros!) are like nothing you see anywhere else.

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Sun about to rise. The saguaros you see in these photos are all about two times as tall as I am (at least 11' tall).

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 Scottsdale in the distance.

Scottsdale in the distance.

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