McDowell Mountain Regional Park

We have been at McDowell Mountain regional park for a week. The park is located a bit north of Fountain Hills AZ. A large portion of the park burned just over 20 years ago so the vegetation is different from other desert areas we’ve been to. Fewer saguaro cactus and larger trees. The park is a haven for serious mountain bikers, there are a bunch of trails for hiking and biking plus competitive mountain bike trails (casual riders are warned to stay off and use more suitable trails for their skill level). 😳
We hike everyday but stay mostly in the wash areas. More space for the dogs and a great workout trudging through the deeper sand.

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Scorched saguaro cactus from the fire in 1995. Below is a close of the burnt area.

 

 

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Close up

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View from one of the hiking trails

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Hiking the wash

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Female and male Phainopepla

While hiking the wash yesterday we were accompanied by three Harris Hawks. The hunt as a group with one bird flying to flush out prey (rodents) then the other birds swoop down and kill the prey. The Hawks seemed to be using the dogs to flush prey, the moved from tree to tree as we hiked staying just ahead of us. The photos aren’t great but I think the are still pretty cool. Fun watching these birds fly.

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Three Harris Hawks

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On the lookout for dinner

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This one kept circling around above me as I took photos

 

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Twisted dead branch looked snake-like

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3 thoughts on “McDowell Mountain Regional Park

  1. dakotaken

    Nice photos! It looks very green there. I hope to start the trek down tomorrow, if the snow stops today. Plan to be in SE NM/ NE TX by the end of the week and through next week. There may not be cell or wifi coverage out on the BLM lands, but I’ll try to update my page when I can.

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  2. kuppajoe

    The info on the burned cactus was interesting. As was the experience with the Hawks on your hike. Thanks for sharing. Love following your free RV lifestyle. ART & CATHY On Jan 25, 2016 7:19 PM, “Betsy and Jerry” wrote:

    > Betsy and Jerry posted: “We have been at McDowell Mountain regional park > for a week. The park is located a bit north of Fountain Hills AZ. A large > portion of the park burned just over 20 years ago so the vegetation is > different from other desert areas we’ve been to. Fewer saguaro” >

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