Friday, October 30, 2015

Crack in the Wall Trail (SARA Park), 10/29/2015

Sara Park is a 1,100-acre, multi-purpose city park, located about 7 miles south of Campbell Cove RV Resort (where we are staying) in Lake Havasu City. The name of the park is an acronym for Special Activities and Recreation Area. In addition to hiking and biking trails, there is an off-leash dog park, rodeo and fairgrounds, BMX and motor cross raceway, roller hockey facility, baseball/softball fields, gun/archery ranges, and the Havasu 95 Speedway (stock car racing venue). We, of course, visited the park to do some hiking (dogs are permitted). 

Traveling southbound on Rte 95, turn right onto McCulloch Boulevard South to reach the trailhead for the Crack in the Wall Trail. This is a popular and scenic trail that follows a wash to the shoreline of Lake Havasu (2 miles each way). 

When we started out there were bright blue skies to the north and threatening dark skies to the south. 

The Crack on this trail is dangerous due to flash flooding when it rains (as are all slot canyons in this part of the country), so we kept a close eye on the weather. The trail quickly drops into a winding wash with spectacular mountain views and interesting rock formations along the way.

Sadie had a blast exploring the sights and smells along the trail. 

As we continued hiking down the wash, the rock formations became more interesting and more spectacular!

The canyon continued to narrow becoming rocky and more difficult to navigate. 

We came to a point in the crack where there is a rope to assist with descending to the canyon floor below. 

Sadie, who normally runs ahead on the trail and then circles back to us, stopped here peering down. We knew we could climb down using the rope, but we weren't sure how we would get Sadie back up (and, honestly, I wasn't sure how well I could climb up with my sprained wrist). Having achieved our goal to hike a portion of the crack, we made the decision to turn back. We took our time enjoying the scenery on our hike back. 

We saw these two windows in the cliffs hiking out of the Crack that we had missed  previously. 

The Crack in the Wall Trail ends at Balance Cove on Lake Havasu. We visited this cove when we were on the Lighthouse Cruise earlier this week. 

We ended up hiking about 3 miles round trip and thoroughly enjoyed it. We met several groups of hikers along the trail. Coincidentally, one of the couples we met on the trail is staying at the same RV resort where we are staying. 

For additional information about Sara Park, check out their website. 

Lighthouse Cruise (Lake Havasu, AZ), 10/28/2015

The Lighthouse Cruise departs from the dock of the Sunset Charter and Cruise Co. beneath the London Bridge on the Bridgewater Channel behind the Lake Havasu Visitor Center. It is a two-hour, narrated tour aboard the "Kon Tiki Canyon Cruiser" that showcases 18 of the 25 replica lighthouses on The Island and along the shores of Lake Havasu. This tour is available every Wednesday and departs at 1 pm. Sunset offers other cruses (Copper Canyon, 1 hour; Sunset Cruise, 3 hours; or specialty tours) on various schedules. The cost of Lighthouse tour is $30/adult. For more information about Sunset Charter tours, please see their website at

Our tour guide, Captain Rick, was very knowledgeable about the area and provided ongoing commentary throughout the tour (with a few breaks when we listened to good music!) The tour started by heading north along the Bridgewater Channel. 

The Lake Havasu Lighthouse Club has erected 25 replica lighthouses around the desert lake. Most are 1/3 the size of the original lighthouse. Lighthouses on the west side of Lake Havasu are replicas of West Coast lighthouses; and, those on the east side are replicas of East Coast lighthouses. Those around The Island are all replicas of lighthouses from the Great Lakes. All of them are operational, navigational lighthouses registered with the Coast Guard. For additional information about the club see

I was fascinated by this (who can see so many lighthouses in such a short period of time!) and below are photos of the 18 that we saw today. They are shown in the order in which we saw them on the cruise.

East Quoddy Lighthouse, original in New Brunswick Canada
West Quoddy Lighthouse, original in Lubec, ME

Robert R. Manning, original in Empire, MI
Vermilion, original on Lake Erie, Vermilion, OH
Split Rock, original on Lake Superior, Two Harbors, MN

Point Gratoit, original in Dunkirk, NY
Alpena (nicknamed, "Sputnik"), original in Alpena, MI
Wind Point, original in Wind Point, WI 

Chicago Harbor/Navy Pier, original in Chicago, IL
White Shoal, original on Lake Michigan, 20 miles south of Mackinaw Bridge
Algoma Pierhead, original in Algoma, WI

Mount Desert Rock, original in Frenchboro, ME
Umpqua River, original in Umpqua River, OR
Portland Head, original on an island south of Portland, ME

Lake Havasu Marina, n/a
Fire Island, original in Long Island, NY

Currituck Beach, original in Outer Banks, NC
Main Buffalo, original on Lake Erie at the Erie Canal entrance

We also cruised into several coves on both the California and Arizona sides of Lake Havasu. The first one had a lovely small island with a palm tree (planted by someone) as a memorial to a loved one. Flowers are usually seen there as well.

We were lucky enough to see a beautiful bald eagle sitting atop an outcrop of stone on the banks of the lake. The photo is not that great, but it was a treat to see this bird of prey even from a distance.

Next we cruised into the Copper Canyon. This is a very popular boating area especially during Spring Break and holiday weekends. It is gorgeous and extends about 100 yards with steep banks in some areas. The green hue of the water is due to copper that was once mined here.

There were many boats on the water, both sail and power boats (several towing skiers).  And the scenery is spectacular. 

We enjoyed these interesting rock formations on the Arizona side of the lake south of Lake Havasu. 

Our guide provided interesting details about Robert McCullough (a true visionary) and the acquisition of the London Bridge. We passed underneath it as we returned to the dock. Of interest are the swallow nests on the underside of the bridge. These small birds migrate to South America annually but return to these same nests each year. There are also thousands of bats that have made their home inside the bridge. Both help to reduce the insect population in the area. 

We thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to do some sightseeing on this beautiful lake. It's a great way to see many of the lighthouse replicas here. We felt it was good value for the cost.  

For additional information about sightseeing tours in the area, check Lake Havasu City's website: