The most difficult hike I undertook was the trail to Balanced Rock; not because it was a difficult terrain, but because I didn’t pace myself as the path curved alongside a small, sandy wash. Follow the wash, climbing ever so slightly until the trail leaves the wash behind and enters the geologic wonder all visitors come to see: the Grapevine Hills.
Formed as the result of rising magma within the earth becoming entrapped by overlying sedimentary rock layers, the Grapevine Hills display fantastically rounded granite-like boulders of all shapes and sizes. In certain circumstances, such as one near the end of the trail, these boulders have oriented themselves such that they are balanced precariously on top of other rocks. Needless to say, they are truly a sight to see!
Near the end of the trail, the terrain to became more rocky underfoot, as well as appreciably more strenuous as I climbed into the rock outcropping. I didn’t have much left in me at this point. Luckily the walk down and back was quite pleasant.