Ambika, Anne and I (the A-trio) met Randy (RWStorm) at Tucson and headed to Willcox. After a great bbq lunch at The Dining Car in the historic district and after bumping around on the last couple miles of road leading to the trailhead parking, we arrived in the afternoon on Saturday.
At around 2PM we hiked in about a mile and 1/2. The trail was a busy one as others were making their way down from the peak. The trail crosses over the currently dry creek bed quite a few times. There are great displays of color here and there, some more vibrant than others. We did find the "killer" tree tag... not sure what that was about. We speculated a photographer had left the tag; yes, it was indeed a "killer" tree in all its beauty and stature.
Around 5:15PM we arrived back to a camping spot Randal S. had set up from the previous day. Some of the other part of the arizonahikers group joined us and we had dinner and some beverages to finish up our day. The nite was a bit chilly and I did my usual catnap-sleeping for the nite. I think I'm getting more used to almost
solidly in the outdoors.
The next morning we packed up camp and met two other hikers from the arizonahikers group that had come from Tucson for a day hike. We started at 9AM but didn't stay together long though as Ambika was photography hiking. I served as her "grip" when needed and she shared her photography tips along the way. It was great walking through nature's autumn tunnels. The further we got up the side of the mountain, the more awesome and voluminous the color became.
About 1:30ish, we turned around just past the area where you could follow the white tree trunks high up in the sky to see the aspen's sparse yellow glistening leaves dangling from the branches. It took us about 2 1/2 hours to get back down. We didn't take any pictures the last 45 minutes or so. I still find it hard to believe we only saw two other folks on this trail besides the people we knew and they were hunters on ATVs.
We stopped at Willcox for supper at Tacos El Sonorese (located at the back of an RV camp resort on 185 just past where you turn on to it from the Business I-10 loop coming into town from the east side) and had a fabulous meal for 3 for $20 before finally arriving home at 10PM.
Some have asked me about the difference between this and the West Fork of Oak Creek fall color hikes. I think the volume of color was more substantial at Ash Creek but West Fork has those incredible canyon walls and a lot of water in the creek.
UPDATE: After reviewing just the first day of my pictures, let me re-phrase parts of the last paragraph. Ash Creek had SO MUCH MORE AND VOLUMINOUS color than West Fork.
Two videos: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-sFSUY-uzVE