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573 triplogs

Aug 08 2020
RedRoxx44
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Graveyard Tour, AZ 
Graveyard Tour, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Aug 08 2020
RedRoxx44
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I was going to commit a crime and had the necessary tools in the Jeep but decided better of it today. Instead parked in an area normally inaccessible if we had monsoon and walked right to a neglected grave site area I had sought before. The cross made of pipe laying on it's side helped. About 6 piles of rocks on this knoll; a scenic area to sleep. From there I completed a canyon segment going upcanyon, usually it's down canyon for me. The weather site had indicated some precip in the area the day before. Some pools of water, very low in accordance to peak water line. Again, in a good monsoon this area would have running water. However lots of green grass and the oaks looked quite happy.
Weirdness in the memory files, passed a homestead I saw more than a few years ago; swear it was an adobe wall then. Now bricks exposed and seemed more to it than I remember. Another gravesite here. Up to the lakes, saw a blue heron and a duck, poor pic, then returned, to a side canyon. This major graveyard has been wonderfully attended. The old fence repaired and it was very clean, and clear margins to all the graves. I counted 19 sites, including six; maybe two infants and four children. My research of the miners' and their families indicated some may have died in the 1918 flu pandemic.
Back down the canyon to the Jeep for the 4wd twister to get out. Now to another site, right off the road. Marked by another cross, this is an old gravesite area for yet another group of miners/settlers. The cross here I recognized and is used by a group to mark more modern illegals demise. I believe it is " No more Deaths" who does this, which I don't necessarily agree with, but they do what they do. Some rock wall circular foundations here. I drove up the road a little, but very hot now and I did not want to commit when the road narrowed and climbed out of sight.
This area has great history and little tidbits all over the place if you are willing to drive/walk to find them. Better than sitting at home with YouTube and Netflix IMO. Of course I'll be back.
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Aug 01 2020
RedRoxx44
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It's Friggin Hot, AZ 
It's Friggin Hot, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Aug 01 2020
RedRoxx44
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Not too bad to start. Walked a degraded road that I could have driven in the Jeep but wasn't sure about the ability to turn around. Not fond of steep downhill narrow shelf road that goes out of sight. Well, what do you know the hill I wanted to get on top of right in front of me. Where the road ended at a tank I picked up an animal trail that contoured around a small canyon. From there it was a steep but not hard walk up, catclaw at first then that let up. This little summit is one of those that rolls over so as you go up it seems you are no closer. Sure enough, nice views, not very nice light. It was overcast a bit but hot and humid. A good sweatfest. I found a summit register in a jar but I could not open it. I protected it better then left on a ridgeline then followed a different animal trail thru the catclaw. Some interesting side bits. A gated tunnel with a solar charged pump running pumping clear cold water out to a tank. The tank fitted with a water drinking fountain that worked quite well, water was a little tepid but no mineral taste.
Back at the Jeep moved it a short distance to walk to another mine and check the tunnels. No shade and full blazing sun. The tunnels were flooded and one had a nice rattlesnake. It was large and maybe old, I couldn't pass it safely so encouraged it to get out of the way. It made it's way a short distance down the tunnel into a wider spot. It rattled only once or twice and never struck at me. It crawled all stretched out and I followed slowly, pausing when it did till it got out of the way. I praised it like I do my cat " you're such a good snake!" I wonder if it had recently eaten it was so docile.
One mine tunnel I would try if I had someone with me. It went into deep water but there was head room and the air seemed good.
I wet myself down for the short walk back to the Jeep. I was filthy from crawling around in the mine, but didn't bother to change on the drive home. Fun at the border patrol check point, the guy was like " uh, having fun somewhere??" It was fun but it was bloody hot. Almost all the pools there from last weekend were gone, although it is greening up down there. I hope we get rain someday soon.
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Jul 26 2020
RedRoxx44
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Purpose 2, AZ 
Purpose 2, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jul 26 2020
RedRoxx44
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Wasn't going to log this but what the hay. My approach to the high point failed. I had hoped that once I made the ridgeline I could do it. I started too late, got too hot, topped out all scratched and scraped up. I know waa waa-- call the wambulance. The views were really nice. A bump on the ridgeline looked impassable without some hand foot scrambling; to bypass it I would have to loose all my elevation gain to go up to the true highpoint. I looked around and was over it. I'll get it done, when cooler. Near the break in the cliffs I had ascended there were some old cairns on the highpoint on this end. I bailed off another way pleased to avoid catclaw but I still sat down a few times with the steepness and loose rock. A weirdly placed rock wall, the only thing I could think was defensive or used as a blind. Finally to the dirt road and to the Jeep. About 95 degrees but with humidity.
Back to the mine with a handline. As with all good efforts the tunnel ended in a flooded adit, would mean scuba diving. However I drove the Jeep on another derelict road above this one and was rewarded. Trashed out trailers and walked an old road to a major mine area with an airstream all trashed out on a scenic ledge. I have to hand it to whoever hauled that thing in there; even if the road was majorly improved that was a feat. I was in this area before but now all the fencing was down and before I think I poked around but was turned off by not seeing anything. There was some nice ore in the area. I'll come back here for the tunnels when I can give full attention. As usual I was wandering around with a camera and an ice tea drink and no pack or light when I spotted the mining area. One shed held a score of "The encyclopedia for DIY" had gotten wet but still readable.
Clouds were building but it was hot as hades and I was out of there. At the border patrol checkpoint the Jeep had it's usual admirers'. Good weekend but I want the monsoon's full throttle ASAP!
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Jul 25 2020
RedRoxx44
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Purpose, AZ 
Purpose, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jul 25 2020
RedRoxx44
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No not the Justin Bieb's tour. I had a couple of things I wanted to see in the drier season before full monsoon. The big swimming pool size tank and past an old mine I had been to a few years back. Driving down near the border a few mud holes on the road so the rains are coming up from the south. Nice cool morning temps. I drove down a road I had not been on and sized up an offtrail to an interesting rock formation. Multiple ways to get to the area depends on how far and how many washes you want to negotiate; ie how hard you want to work for it.
On to the goal. Cowboys driving a bunch of cattle toward the border. I minded my own business. Lots of mooing and cow poo everywhere. Tucked the Jeep away in an island of cow patties, some coats and carpet booties. Lots of activity it looked like. Down the old road into the canyon, up the next canyon to the mine. Some scrambling I sort of remembered and some pools. Short on the map but some effort. I took the mine road that appeared up on a shelf and hiked it to where I could see it would connect to yet another road I need to explore. Very good. I came back, some collapse at the mine entrance. I got in and walked the short tunnel, some nice gypsum crystal formation at the back. Treaded a very narrow trail above the rock wall choke point then back down. Main canyon walk up to the big tank. It was down but I am sure this thing will always hold water unless a severe long drought. Lots of fish activity, I will post pics hope someone can identify. Mostly 4-6 inches long some bigger. After the insects at the surface so lots of flopping about.
The canyon had some recent northbound travel activity. I haven't seen that in years. Pleasant walking without wall to wall running water just some pools. A few more weeks of rain activity and it will flow. Back to the Jeep. Driving out looking over yet another high point approach, might do that tomorrow. Took another spur road to a mine area, steep underground holding onto a cable only to have it crap out on me and me sliding in the steep stope. Will bring a handline as this looks pretty easy once you get to the floor. Yet another mine flooded but beautiful aqua blue gympsum and blue calcite rafts on the surface pool, very pretty. Another mine access thru massive catclaw. This one had a lot of interesting items in there, some older but definitely not ancient. Someone had gathered up some glass bottles, large, some smaller medicine and like jam or jelly bottles. Decayed bedsprings in the tunnel. So an old camp of some sort, did not look like an illegals campout.
Back to the Jeep, on up the road. Some girl in a low slung car on her phone. Bad choice for this road I was impressed she had even tried it.
On home lots of clouds and high humidity but no rain today at least where I was.
Flora
Flora
Mala mujer
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Jun 28 2020
RedRoxx44
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At the Border, AZ 
At the Border, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jun 28 2020
RedRoxx44
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This turned out a lot better than I thought. The times I have driven this area it was sort of creepy and a turn off to me, something here put me on edge. Today I drove and parked the Jeep on an undriven spur road near the only tank in the area that had water, the others I could see were dry on the drive in.
Jeep behaving well, having the radiator flushed seemed to help the run toward hot issue, and I had put on rims with more backspacing. Prior had spacers or adaptors or whatever you want to call them to allow the big tires room on turns without getting into the suspension. I hated them. I had an expert install them, but they are just another failure point for the wheel as well as putting more stress on wheel bearings etc. Discount happened to have the wheels in stock with more backspacing when I was in for a rotation. The tires were pulled in a little more so no more sticking way out look which I don't really like. Now not as nervous on the narrow mining roads.

The Jeep nimbly negotiated the tight rocky shelf road to the tank. No one here, saw a lot of border patrol on the drive in. I saddled up and started down the old road. I could have driven part of it then it faded out. Wanted to walk anyway. It paralleled the border fence, here barb wire, in good condition. The road pretty much ended in the canyon bottom at a mine. Some cottonwood trees but no surface water seen. The fence then went up and away. I followed the canyon bottom, hung a left up a side canyon, easily negotiating a few dry falls. Nice shady narrow area with lots of remnants of northbound folks. Soon the fence again, left the canyon and more or less followed it.
Views opened up. Border Monument 132 is on the Mexico side, painted camo green and small like 130. Some prospects on the Mexico side were full of trash. Geology here is quite striking, the grassy hills with a few small trees and bushes and then striking rock walls marching in a line separated by little valleys or grabens.

Back a different way to explore some of the natural rock walls. Murder on the eastern sides of the hills with abundant catclaw. Lots of trails from animals and illegals but nothing helps with dense catclaw when you are in shorts and a tank top.

Almost to the car park then deviated to explore an old mining site in the old country. Very interesting smelter and some nice ore. Got chased by some wasps in a canyon section and had to get to the old road not the preferred way.

A little warm, nice breeze, far clouds building. This area will be awesome in the monsoon.
Culture
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HAZ Rides
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Jun 20 2020
RedRoxx44
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Wandering and Success, AZ 
Wandering and Success, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jun 20 2020
RedRoxx44
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The old self published hiking book gave directions. However in 30 years some things do change. Where the indication was given to turn off pavement I was faced with a barb wire fence and a field, no road. Double checked the info. I felt like a person with a GPS -- " Marge, get out those fence cutters, we need to cut a hole and drive this way cause it tells us to". Fortunately I had looked at a TOPO map. About 14 miles later I turned off where I was supposed to. From here the directions seemed pretty good, but you had to get thru a checkerboard of private land; all variety of signage, from an old forest service road sign, to the home made kind to signage that was professional but not the government variety. I drove thru a bunch of cowboys sorting cattle at an old corral, they had fortunately not blocked the road.
The road went downhill in a hurry but was a pleasant drive. I went by an open flat area just before the road ended. Here in the early 1900's stood a cabin, gone now, a peace officer was shot in the back by smugglers' made it to this spot before he died.
Parked at the wilderness boundary. The old book indicated to drive farther but from here I hiked. Just past the wash was a cairned start to a trail. Not bothering to check my source I walked along till I thought I am going in the wrong direction. I ended up at a tank. Retraced my steps, kicked the cairn over and tried again. Now I passed the foundation of an old adobe homestead and I knew I was on the right track. The canyon was kinda pretty. Soon I came to a very well made rock wall, and multiple walls in the area. It was an old mining camp not on my TOPO but I had read about in the booklet. Nice quartz crystallization about. No open tunnels I could find. I wasn't too jazzed but continued up the canyon. I saw travertine rock then the springs started with lush grass, soon tall pines. At one open area a large tree had been felled by an ax, and the tree hollowed out to provide perhaps a trough for animals to feed.
On up, starting to get less interesting. The shade was nice as it was heating up. I headed back, stopping to examine more closely the rock structure in the canyon bottom. It was mortared but it looked like a crushed travertine rock that was plentiful in the bedding here maybe mixed with a crude cement.

Back at the Jeep drove out and not too long looked at outside temp gauge and it said 104. Very little humidity tho so tolerable for a short sortie. More to do in the general area but not today.
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Jun 13 2020
RedRoxx44
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More, AZ 
More, AZ
 
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More mines, bats etc. New place, new exploring. I parked the Toyota at a multi dirt road junction. The upper spur was short and had an off camber washout I would not have tried with that vehicle. Ended at a newish cabin, open, pack ratted out but with an invite to stay if you like.
The mine adits were steep angled stopes that were a little dangerous. The first one I tried had a friendly rattlesnake in an awkward place to get around so I passed on it. The second one I probed for snakes, but it's problem it was what I call a death funnel, very steep and loose, if you start sliding you're going on down. I went down far enough to light it up and couldn't decide if the debris made a mound or it had a jump off down a shaft. None the less not doing it without a handline which I did not have with me.
Wandering around very rewarding with some old mining camp debris, colorful ore and another wicked stope that might require full gear just to see if it goes. I took an off trail trek back to the vehicle to check on some unnamed springs in the area. I came upon a small tunnel with nice entry cribbing. It was an old one, manual labor opened this tunnel. It was fairly long, had a not too recent dead javelina and some bats. Again ducked out but it looked like it ended just past the pile of bats clinging to the wall.

I intercepted the lower dirt road which ended in a homestead area with a large grassy spring that had surfaced and sends water a far distance down this canyon. It was well fenced off to protect from cattle but I got in and photographed the almost hidden old spring box. Another small tunnel up canyon looked like it was the blasting storage tunnel, they had made a chimney thru the rock to vent it with a stovepipe and cover projecting up on the hill above.

Back to the car, getting pretty hot. I went home but checked my TOPO program and came back today. A cemetery was downcanyon not three miles from a car park in a very pretty, interesting geologically, little canyon. The rock walls were low but ran almost perpendicular to the canyon. Almost like a lot of little faults. And volcanic mixed with other rock, there is limestone in the area but not showing. The canyon was very nice, some big sycamores, nice benches, and had a low flow of water all the way with nice pools. I don't use a GPS and I did not bring a map. Very strangely at one spot in the canyon I followed what looked to be an old wagon road out of the bottom and noted a fenced off area on a bench that could not be seen from the bottom. Do not know how many people buried here, two old crosses but seemed to be more piles and divots than that in the fenced off section.
Now I kept a hard lookout for a homestead. Not too far away on the opposite bench spotted part of a small foundation. Up on the bench there were several possibilities, old cans, a few stove parts etc. I thought the cemetery and homestead might be associated with the mines but are some distance away so not sure. I followed the old trail thru the area, noted some trees that might be some sort of fruit tree, then back in the bottom with the water. Wet my hat down and back to the car. Home before noon. Great spot, will keep in mind when and if the monsoon shows up. A lot of water in this canyon could be really fun.
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Jun 06 2020
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Fun in the Dark, AZ 
Fun in the Dark, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jun 06 2020
RedRoxx44
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Sometimes persistence pays off. A mine exploration in the past was troubled with low battery in my headlamp and a flooded area in a dark tunnel. I decided to go back and see what I could see. Brush was better so it was easier to get into the tunnel I wanted. It's been a few years but I remembered the old door off the hinges at the start. Cautious entry to check for snakes and bees. All clear. The tunnel forked in a 4 way. The ladder perched on some beams about 30 feet overhead was still there. There were spray paint markings indicating someone may be looking to sell their claim or start up again. This place has been abandoned for many years. The next fork went into a dip and there was bad air. Some pooled water and no good air flow. I checked in hurriedly and got up the small debris field into the good air. Finally the tunnel that defeated me years ago. There was still a flooded pit or shaft, someone had placed two boards, I traversed the sort of rotted one but it held. Even if I went in it seemed the floor of the pit was good and I probably would be able to get out.
This is one of the creepiest tunnels I've ever been in just due to the weird dark mineralization of the walls and the obvious porosity and water table here. Damp and dank. But a huge surprise was not far ahead.

I had noted some bat quano but nothing real exciting. The end of the tunnel seemed partially blocked. It was an absolutely huge pile of quano obscuring the junction into a room. I am between 5'4" and 5'5" and it was over my head. Here is where having a high tolerance for ammonia odor does well. It filled about a quarter to a third of the room. The room echoed with chirps, panned my light and thousands of bats. Probably a nursery roost. I took a few quick shots and boogied out of there. A few bats joined me in the tunnel, but I got no good shots.

Back across the rotten board, then out. Walked the area and stuck my head in a few more spots. Off to another area. The watery entrance was deeper than usual but nothing seemed disturbed. Once home I pondered the bat situation. Will the mine activity bother the bats, can they do what they need to do in another part of the mine. Who do you call?? Well I've reached out to a bat person I know and maybe can shed some light on options. This seems like a many year home for them that they really like obviously. Might have to change, whether they like it or not.
Fauna
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May 25 2020
RedRoxx44
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Border Tour Guide, AZ 
Border Tour Guide, AZ
 
4x4 Trip avatar May 25 2020
RedRoxx44
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My ex boss, his three young daughters, his sister and her husband and their french bulldog allowed me to show them some of my favorite southern az border spots. Pretty dry right now though. We drove and stopped and looked over an old adobe building, couple of grave yards, a couple of mines. I took them in a pretty tame mine tunnel, only one adult came along but the girls did great even on the mine ladders which are bomber but a little scary if you are not used to that sort of thing. They oohed and ahed over the frogs, spiders and young mice and a few bats in the mine.
Now everyone tells me they want to come back late monsoon when it greens up. Hope I haven't created a monster. But nobody cried and nobody got hurt, so it was a success.
And I took no photos! I left that up to others.
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May 23 2020
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The Old Timers' Again, AZ 
The Old Timers' Again, AZ
 
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Returned to this area sooner than expected but with pre oven temps couldn't pass it up. Did not see as many memorial day campers as I expected. However always amuses me to see tents out in the open just a few feet from a paved road.

My goal this day was another old large mine and the burro trail associated with it. More recent information ( although I mean by recent probably 20 years old) indicated the forest service might upgrade the trail. Not. Also mentioned one tunnel that looked like a death trap. I did not have luck on the old trail near it's origin so decided to reverse engineer it. Took a blocked off side route from the blocked off old road to the base of a ravine. The mine was in the upper reaches here, multiple tunnels off the sides of the ravine. The old trail I sought came out from the lowest tunnel.
This was a hard hike, lots of elevation gain in steep terrain. Basically the tailings piles were huge and mostly filled sections of the ravine, and with the oak juniper presence covered a lot in the dry oak leaves. Very slippery. The first tunnel was collapsed, a water pipe issuing clear cold water from within. Lots of illegals trash here. I proceeded on up. The ore was getting pretty good, some nice chrysocolla and some smaller remnants of azurite in with perhaps some poor quality malachite. I found some small rocks I wanted so deployed the sports bra storage technique since it was so steep I could not take off my pack without perhaps sliding down 10 feet or so.

At each tailings pile it would be level at the top and give a rest and place to regroup and look around. I found the "death trap", an experienced caver or mine explorer who was small would not hesitate. I groomed the opening and would be able to go in on stomach or back, my light showed it did go but was partly collapsed at the opening. Grooming includes prying and removing loose rock of any size and observing if it will promote additional collapse. I did not enter, I was alone, no one knew where I was, and if anything happened to me my mom would be SOL for a short while until something could be done for her. If someone was with me that would be different. So perhaps I will return one day, as it should be a large complex mine to see.

Back down with fun scree surfing. Found some awesome peacock pyrite and some gold pyrite in a green rock. Walked the old trail back, very good in certain spots and lost it in others with the associated bushwacking. I hope to at some point hike it in it's entirety.

This area has more but with the coming heat I might be ok with letting it go for a while.

As an aside I saw two small rattlesnakes one the past weekend and one on this hike. I didn't get a good photo of it but will post what I have. Looked it up and I am excited to see it might be a banded rock rattlesnake which is apparently protected and has a limited habitat. Will be interested to see what the experts here think.
Fauna
Fauna
Rock Rattlesnake
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May 16 2020
RedRoxx44
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The Old Timers', AZ 
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Hiking avatar May 16 2020
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Reading an old 30 page tome I obtained many years ago in some historical area of some bookstore. Prompted the drive to an area I haven't been to specifically in about 15 years. Don't know why, drive is nice, if a little tedious. Mining history sounded pretty good so this was just a recon hike.
Made it into one mine which was pretty good and fun. Pretty long tunnel and partly flooded, cool water wading welcome. Hiked on some closed roads and noted some other mining remnants, but the main mine eluded me for the time I had. Did find a wonderful spring not noted on the TOPO, it really doesn't look to be a mine prospect but looks a lot like a cave.
Will I be back--yes,yes I will.
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May 10 2020
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A Slotty Sunday, AZ 
A Slotty Sunday, AZ
 
Hiking avatar May 10 2020
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Yes, lets hike a slot canyon with storms in the forecast. I had been here before too. Again wrong side road, then believed my odometer and took the right road. Glad I was in the Jeep, a bad washout from before was still there. Drove over some catclaw to avoid the 5 foot gully almost across the road. The next spur was showing signs it had not been driven in a while. Still passable in a cholla forest, got to the parking spot with all my tires sprouting cholla spines. Why I have 10 ply tires.
Down into the canyon. Right before it started to choke up I saw some furry tails moving toward me. I froze and wondered how good the coati's eyesight would be. Pretty good I got off a few shots with the camera before they scattered. I caught them again on their climb out. They stared down at me pretty put out about it I bet.
Some quad tracks in the wash, then the walls came in. Lots of bird and insect activity. At first dry then the water started. Lots of bees and wasps but they were just after a drink. An owl was bothered by my approach from a rest spot. I saw a dead I think red tail hawk and a fox. Saw some bear poop then mused about what I would do. It's several miles in here that you are not getting out by climbing out, and it's not more than 5-6 feet wide in spots.
The water was nice and easily avoided mostly but when walking in it not deep. I got to a riparian area I did not remember. The air had been still, heavy and humid. Then a puff came down the canyon, cool with that slight edge to it. Time to leave. It was getting very cloudy and I heard thunder. I reversed course with a fairly rapid pace. No noises came behind me, and that was reassuring. Several places logs were placed 20-40 feet overhead. You get it in here and that is it for you most likely.
Up to the Jeep it was stormy and wonderful skies. I dreaded the wash out but it handled it with lo range and lockers with more aplomb this time. Nice stormy skies and a little rain on the drive home but bone dry at the house. Another great day.
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May 09 2020
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The Revisit, AZ 
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Hiking avatar May 09 2020
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I hate to say it but I've been in so many mines, more than a few caves; it's hard to remember all of them except the exceptional ones. I thought I had been here but still not sure. This is a wrong road weekend. Took a spur, nope not the one. Saw something very pinky red on the road, a very large snake that quickly disappeared before I could begin to get the camera out.
Now to the right spur road, drove almost to the mine and parked. Two lower tunnels, one short and one longer. Old beehive or wasp at the entrance but no one home. Nice cool air as it was drafting from a shaft that was open up the hill. Ore was soso, some nice white rock. One area in the tunnel past a small collapse opened slightly and the small room was domed. There must have been over 100 bats in there in several clusters. There wasn't a lot of poop on the floor so traveling and roosting here I suppose. Disturbed they came down around me, some gently fluttering against me as they stirred about in the small place. I put my light toward the ground and moved on so hopefully they could settle down without having to leave.
Several chutes and one old ladder. I went out and up the hill to more workings and remains of an external ore chute. It all seemed very familiar but I am not going to dig thru old photo sets to see. Took a route thru catclaw hell back to the vehicle, by then very warm and headed to the house for this day.
Fauna
Fauna
Bat
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May 03 2020
RedRoxx44
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Backyard Sunday 2, AZ 
Backyard Sunday 2, AZ
 
Hiking avatar May 03 2020
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Just a ramble around Cerro Colorado Arivaca area. The Ocotillo were awesome. The foxtails were terrible and I forgot my gaitors. Some nice traversing on low white cliffs. It was in the mid 90's when I finished but drove home without AC on and was not uncomfortable.
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Apr 30 2020
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Desert morning, AZ 
Desert morning, AZ
 
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RedRoxx44
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Twice a week I do a couple of miles in the desert adjacent to my housing development. Normally I don't log these although they have been rich in some archaeo, flora, fauna. This morning a brahma/ angus cross bull, huge, two deer I got a clear view of one a very large doe, looked like a muley?!, a fight/chase with two road runners and a male quail, and a very photogenic rattlesnake. IMO worthy of note. The snake pics are from my cell phone so not great quality but that snake was a beauty.
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Apr 25 2020
RedRoxx44
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First Heat Acclimation hike, AZ 
First Heat Acclimation hike, AZ
 
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Short sorties over a couple of days in same general area. Some nice actual challenging 4 wheeling and frustrating hiking in that both sorta didn't pan out but it's ok. Wanted to get some mileage in the starting heat. Although near the river more like feet per hour. Usual blood donation in the brush. Still a few flowers about.
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Apr 19 2020
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Backyard Sunday, AZ 
Backyard Sunday, AZ
 
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More driving than hiking. Drove out an ATV track to see if it will get me near a wash that goes into some crazy geology. I crossed an interesting wash that I hiked in on my way out. The road went near to where I wanted so it will be used for my hike in the future. A few flowers and some short stretches that went through an Ocotillo jungle.
The wash had a lot of slickrock for it's location and some surprising rock features. This is a new area for consideration during monsoon if I need to be near home.
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Apr 18 2020
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All Mine, AZ 
All Mine, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 18 2020
RedRoxx44
Hiking6.80 Miles 2,800 AEG
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As soon as I leave the pavement the Jeep is in 4wd. I have a love/hate relationship with this road. It is very scenic and takes you to some wonderful spots. Depending on how I feel it's a 7-8/10 on the sphincter scale. Rough thruout, in places it's narrow, with crumbly edges, no turn around spots, tends to have rock falls and washouts, and nasty sharp rock at the edges waiting to test your sidewalls. It's a good road to test your knowledge of how your vehicle behaves, your wheelbase and overall dimensions. Short wheel base is best, but it seems like quads have the best of it here.

The first obstacle I go right, the left hand side is narrow and tippy, too far one way you will roll, the other you will put your vehicle on it's side. I shove the driver side tires into a rut and the Jeep climbs using the sidewall. I am up and over. Rolling along I have several places in mind. The road is going up, the canyon off the driver side falling away in sheer cliffs. An old landcruiser is at the bottom along the way. I stop and look over the edge, an alcove I spotted several hikes before is not impressive close up. It would be a pain to get to so I go on. I take a lower grade road off the main, park at a corral. The degraded Jeep trail should take me to the ridgeline and then I should be able to make an upper approach to a huge old mine, off limits now.

Flowers are beautiful. The road has some rockfall; I could have driven it but two spots would require low range and both diffs locked and would still be somewhat difficult due to the slick and steep aspects. As I gain altitude it's gorgeous in all directions. The old road arrives at a saddle then seems to split up. I turn downhill and there is the gate, and the huge tailings of the derelict mine in site. I've been there before via a low route, but did not get to the upper tailings area.

The road bed is good, although lots of rock fall and deep with weeds. Need a D-9 or whatever to clear it. It switchbacks neatly down. I cover some territory and see something to come back for. As I suspected not a lot of remains, anything of interest removed or destroyed long ago.
Back up to the old road. Take an off trail route to the Jeep that is brutal but scenic. On up the main road are some delightful things but I need to get home and check on mom. I am correct in my deduction it will take an hour to get to pavement.

Despite the sucky road I know I will be back, too much here to see and do.
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Apr 11 2020
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Another Beautiful Day, AZ 
Another Beautiful Day, AZ
 
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Had no thoughts this just evolved out of nothing. Stormy skies--- some stay at home shop on line, eat ( in excess both bad things)other activities. I looked at my makeshift register can. And off I went.
The rough road was just gorgeous lined with at peak Brittlebush, stunning gold against the shifting sky colors and drifting clouds, other flowers too. Lots of foxtails but still mostly attached and not ready to taunt yet.
I parked at the second tank around the corner because I wanted some exercise. The Jeep road between second and third tank really not that bad but an "are you worthy" section is there, 4wd, lo range and at least a rear locker needed.
Clouds were getting interesting, a large bowed section with the mammary clouds streaming out. As I walked the ridgeline for the summit questioned my task; it looked like I was going to get the stuffing kicked out of me, with no cover to speak of. Nothing like high wind and dagger cold sideways rain even with rain gear. The most was I was sprinkled on with just a few gentle gusts. The squall moved north of me and graced the mountain range there with at least virga.
Views were there and I managed the cactus shin dagger dance well. I placed the new register and accidentally broke the old bottle with my clumsiness, cleaned it up best I could. Still not happy with it, could use a better top like an inverted soup can. Another future task. Looked over the place. If I am lucky in the future I will return here with a backpack with about a weeks' worth of food.

I chose a different route down to the old Jeep trail and it worked very well, probably better than my approach. Someone did not like their Hoka One One summit boots and I got them for a steal, a little large but they worked very well on the hike and super comfortable. I'll have to look at them for the future, a little pricey retail for sure.
A low hanging cloud dragging rain streamers surrounded me, and I got to the Jeep 5 minutes before a more serious rain. It just brightened the colors, lots of flowers yet, owl clover etc. Nice drive home with beautiful gothic cloud skies. I love it when it's stormy, but I like it when it's sunny too. Again nice to get out where you can be a little normal.
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Apr 05 2020
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A Sometime Fools Progress, AZ 
A Sometime Fools Progress, AZ
 
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With a nod to Ed Abbey; down near the border with it's usual surprises
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