Tonga Ridge and Sawyer Pass -- August 21, 2005

This hike is rated 4 hiking boots out of 5 on the Hiking Boot-o-meter...

... and in an all-too-rare combination, it is also rated 

5 little pairs of pink flamingos out of 5 on the Flamingo-o-meter.

We finally got around to stopping in at the First/Last Chance Espresso Drive-Thru Restrooms Mexico Imports Antiques Kitchy Store Galore and Gift Gallery.  It's the Last Chance when you're heading east, and the First Chance when you're heading west.  Ya get it?

It has been calling out to (at least one of) us ever since we started heading up Highway 2 to go hiking.

It was gleefully noted that they carry the rare and exotic jumbo Alpha Flamingo, so we now happily have a local source for same, but now sadly have one less reason to return to the Flamingo Hotel Gift Shop in Las Vegas.  Ya win some of 'em and ya lose some of 'em.

One of the more curious juxtapositions found in our most curious world - amusing some, offending others, and totally baffling everyone else.  Note too how Kokopelli quietly snuck in.

We shopped around for quite a while, happy to find and purchase a lovely Flamingo table-top decorative piece on the "Each Item $3.99 Sale Table", and after sharing tales of our recent Fourth Annual Flamingo Fete with the attentive proprietress, headed on to the trailhead.  As we left, we noticed that the crowds had descended on the establishment like hungry locusts or, more to the point perhaps, like road-weary motorists, likely drawn in by our enthusiasm; it had been deserted when we arrived.  Causal or merely coincidental?

Sue was in Blueberry Heaven.

At the end of this hike, like so many others, on the way back to civilization we had to tend to some resource redistribution.  The rocks are a lot happier out here in the wild than they would be sitting in plastic buckets behind the shed in our backyard.

The perpetrator takes cover behind some handy bushes while doing the deed.  Three buckets later and we were outta there and on our way home.

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