Monday, March 1, 2010

Seasonal Exchange - Day 3 - Ghost Towns

More driving. Stocked up on supplies in town, then drove the dirt Black Canyon Backcountry Byway, which we thought would show us a slice of the Gila River riparian zone. It did, but a very thin slice. One bridge crossed the river past a muddy vegetation-choked bank where we cooked breakfast. The rest of the road was through high, rugged desert with ocotillo, prickly pear, cholla and barrel cactus.

The rest of the day we made our way further and further southward on 191. South of I-10 we dove off that highway and onto the dirt Ghost Town Trail. Ruins of old gold towns in the Dragoon Mountains, and more decay for us to photograph.
From AZ Travel

Saw our first border patrol truck here. The first of dozens and dozens. Seems to be serious business to secure our southern border. I just hope I can get out when I need to.

We passed through Tombstone, Arizona, famed in annals of the Wild West. It is not a ghost town, but something else. Trina was repulsed by what a tourist trap the town was. I said, "It's not a town. It's a Theme Park." The ghosts seemed to have fled.

Westward through the half-town of Sonoita (a row of buildings on just one side of the road) and on dirt into the foothills of the Santa Rita Mountains. Found ourselves a beautiful ridge-top camp spot with an incredible view. Sweeping blonde grass hills speckled with oak trees and manzanita -- so much like Marin. Snowy tops of the Santa Ritas to the west. More distant mountains in almost every direction. We settled in and soon the mountains were lost to silhouette, starlight, and a thin crescent moon.
From AZ Travel

From AZ Travel

That night we slept. It was chilly and we brought the little dogs into the tent and tucked them into their own sleeping bags (thrift store down coats sewn closed at the bottom) at our feet. The old poopy dog slept under the rain fly, also in a down coat-bag. Despite the howls of coyotes both near and far and all around us, we all slept the night through.

1 comment:

  1. That "Ghost Town" photograph is incredible, and slightly eerie.