We packed in as much as we could -- 3/14 - 3/17
This post is a conglomeration of places Jimmy and I went and hikes we took, things we saw and people we met. At this time of year there are so many choices of guided walks or self-guided walks, and canyons to explore. We packed in as much as we could and still only scratched the surface.
One of the first places we visited was the ghost town of Historic Fairbank. Located east of Sierra Vista on the San Pedro River, the town was founded during the 1880's silver mining boom. It began as a stagecoach stop on the way to Tombstone, which was then one of the biggest towns in the west. The wild characters that made Tombstone famous also walked the dusty streets of Fairbank. Not many structures are left, but it's history lives on. Here's a good one for you: In 1905, the Bouquillas Land and Cattle Co bought the land and evicted most of the town's residents. Rather than leave them to their evictors, townspeople knocked their own houses down with sledgehammers!
This gypsum block schoolhouse was built in the 1920's after the original wooden structure burned down.
Jimmy walking on the old rail bed (paralleling the river) to the cemetery on "boot hill." A hot walk and, unlike Tombstone's famous cemetery, not much to see.
This cowboy is Ed Avery and his horse. Ed recited a Baxter Black poem for me and Jimmy! Cool character.
Fairbank Commercial Bldg, which held the general store, a saloon and even the town jail! The post office operated from 1883 to the early 1970's.
Back at Ft Huachuca, Jimmy and I drove out Garden Canyon near sunset and spotted these pronghorns.
And a beautiful sunset ended our day.
Saturday morning we drove a few miles south to 380-acre Ramsey Canyon Preserve and hooked up with The Nature Conservancy people for a guided nature walk of the canyon. We walked along the stream-side habitat amid gonzo Arizona sycamore trees. The canyon cuts thru the Huachuca Mtns, one of the high biodiversity "sky island" ranges. Here we sit beneath one of the 200-yr-old trees. Great morning.
Outstanding Huachuca agave.
After lunch, we drove to the San Pedro River House and walked the 2 mile easy trail, part of which followed the river. Huge cottonwoods were just beginning to bud out. It doesn't look like much in the picture, but it really was a purty trail. Believe it or not, the San Pedro River features some of the richest wildlife habitats in the Southwest. We were told that 82 species of mammals, dozens of different reptiles and amphibians and nearly 350 species of birds can be found here. We saw lots of different birds, but no mammals and no snakes!
Picture perfect day on the San Pedro River.
The sky, the budding cottonwoods (and Jimmy) all get an A+.
We went home and crashed. Bring on the new day tomorrow!