Craig Calcaterra

I write about baseball for NBC Sports.com. I write about other things here.
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I dropped Allison off at the airport and headed back to Tempe. I was bored so I walked around. Then I was bored walking around so I walked up Hayden Butte, which is sometimes called “A Mountain.”

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It’s only about 300 or so vertical feet, but it winds and stuff. And it’s rocky and deserty. And since it’s right next to downtown Tempe, a lot of people decided to walk up it after a couple of beers and while wearing inappropriate footwear. Makes for good people watching.

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┬áThe A is 60 feet from top to bottom. It’s usually Arizona State University yellow. But it gets painted over by rival schools from time to time.

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Top of the world, ma.  The aqua-roofed building at the center of this pic is my hotel.

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The (dry) Salt River bed, Sky Harbor Airport and downtown Phoenix. Allison texted me from the tarmac just before I took this, telling me she was getting ready to take off. I hung out for a while and watched planes take off and tried to guess which one was hers. About ten minutes later I saw a Southwest plane take off heading west, bank south and fly back east. I’m going to assume it was hers.

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It was a cloudy day in Phoenix, but when I got back to the bottom the setting sun broke through and lit up the top of the butte. Heh, I like to say “butte.”

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At the base of the butte sits the old Hayden Flour Mill. It was built in 1918 and was in operation until 1998. Now it’s empty, as the abandoned rail spur line makes clear. I’m sure there are all kinds of plans to do interesting things with it. I’m guessing it’ll eventually just be another brew pub.

So that was my little hike up the butte. It was fun and now my legs are kind of sore.

Fin.

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