— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 25, 2015
Editor’s Note: SportsCenter reporter Pedro Gomez @pedrogomezESPN has lived in the Phoenix area since 1997. With a deep knowledge of the area, Gomez offers visitors to his region some tips for things to do beyond the big game on Sunday. “This truly is an area with a new generation of people coming in droves every year,” said Gomez, a native of Miami. “There’s a reason so many sporting events and athletes love to call the Valley home; it’s a spectacular area only underscored by the number of big-ticket events that love returning to the metro Phoenix area.
Here are a few of my favorite things (and some not at the top of my list but still worth mentioning) about our state and the Valley of the Sun.” Tuesday, Front Row published Part 1 of Pedro’s Tour.
Pedro’s place to take a hike:
“Arizona has got to be one of the best places for hiking. If you’re extremely adventurous [and in really good shape, like the guys pictured above], try climbing Camelback Mountain. It’s incredibly strenuous, but the view from the top is worth every bit of sweat and it is simply breathtaking.”
Pedro’s favorite scenic drive:
“Head to the Papago Buttes on the Scottsdale/Phoenix border along McDowell Road. The drive from east to west just past sundown or in the evening is still one of my favorite sights and I’ve lived here 17 years. It truly never gets old seeing the Buttes (large orangish rock formations that jut out from the earth and formed millions of years ago) on either side as you drive through and suddenly see the entire Valley open up before your eyes. To me, the view at night is far superior to the daylight because all of the city’s lights twinkle so brightly.”
Pedro’s choices for Mexican food:
“We are located in the Sonoran Desert and that means some of the best Mexican food anywhere. There are plenty of choices and you’d probably be happy at most any of them. For traditional Tex-Mex, hard to beat The Tee-Pee on Indian School Road. A little off the grid? Try Los Dos Olivos but be prepared for the hot stuff.”
Pedro’s hidden gems only the locals might know about:
“If you head up to Winslow or Sedona, be sure to stop at Exit 242 on your way back and stop inside The Rock Springs Café & General Store in Black Canyon City. Even if you don’t have time to sit down, order a pie and take it home. They have pies like Tennessee Lemon and Jack Daniel Pecan Pie as well as all of your favorites. Even if you throw a dart at the pie board and take whatever the dart hits, you’ll be amazed. If you can’t make it all the way to Sedona, this is worth the 40-minute drive.”
— ivey (@ivey00880866) January 23, 2015