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Spiral Walk, MapMyFitness, 5k Planning

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Yesterday, I took my two greyhounds to Steele Indian School Park for a long walk. Well, two miles is long for a sprinting dog (smile). We walked the entire park's perimeter, then down into the spiral and back out. A Spiral Walk. Here's how the walk looks on the MapMyFitness android phone app:

The park is on Indian School Road, in Phoenix, Arizona, USA, and - in fact the road was named for the Indian School that once sat on the park property. You see, it wasn't always a park. It used to be a boarding school. Back in the early 1900s, the "all-superior white Americans" thought the best way to deal with the indigenous "Indian" population was to separate the children from their families and raise them in boarding schools. The children were not allowed to exercise any of their native traditions and were forced to learn and speak only English. It was brutal and in my opinion, horrendously cruel.

So the school is no longer a school, yet gave the road its name and now has given the park its name. The park has many historical stops where you can read about the history in various eras. The spiral walk is my favorite part of the park. It descends gradually about two stories, with lovely desert landscaping. At the bottom center of the spiral is a reflecting pool/fountain, where you can stop and truly forget you are in the heart of a busy metropolis.

Today, Sparkfriend HIKERBECKY and I returned to Steele Indian School Park to map out a 5k for our SparkPhoenix Team to walk in a week. We have a team put together for an official 5k being held in January and are "practicing." Walking 5k is no longer a big deal for me, though it remains a nice work-out! It translates to 3.1 miles.

Anyhow, Becky and I walked the spiral. We liked it so much that after we looped the full park, we walked the spiral a second time. And guess what? It is truly meant to be. The spiral, looping the park, then back into the spiral is just a wee tad over 5k (3.1 miles). Perfecto!

So this weekend, I enjoyed the spiral walk three times! WooHoo!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I know it seems like a strange thing to do if you are ever there, but if you go to Hawai'i at some point, check out the Bishop museum (actually the Bernice Pauahi Bishop museum) or some of the other cultural sites (like the palace). Native Hawaiians went through a lot of the same cultural problems - a friend's grandmother was jailed for using her real name when she was in 8th grade because it was a Hawaiian name. Nowadays, all state documents are translated into Hawaiian as well as English, street signs contain the proper Hawaiian spelling, and there's Hawaiian language news breaks on NPR. Everyone who goes there gets excited about the natural beauty, but there a vast and rich cultural heritage if you get off the resorts.

    Anyway, that's my "The More You Know!" moment for the day. I love the spiral walk and the map DOES look like a necklace!
    1998 days ago
    i grew up in phoenix, i remember the 'Indian School' but I think it had been boarded up for most of my life. i havent been over that way since the park was built, i live in the east valley and seldom have a reason to go to phoenix. sounds like a nice park tho-i will have to make the time. i think they have 5k events there, but I had never been, i had it mixed up with indian bend park. anyhoo, i want to join yall for the color run-cept i think i will walk mostly.
    1999 days ago
  • LIZZIE888
    Your map looks like a really funky necklace!

    2001 days ago
  • LINDAK25
    That looks really cool on the map. What a great walk for a 5K.

    On the other hand, what a sad history. Amazing how fear and stupidity will allow people to do such inhumane things.
    2001 days ago
    Thanks for sharing
    2001 days ago
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