Thursday, March 17, 2011

March Madness

If you read the title of this post and guessed I was going to write about a basketball tournament- get a grip and guess again. Did you miss me much? Haven't posted since March 1. It seems I have been much too busy "researching" to get any writing done. Inspiration comes in spurts, so that is just the way it is. Truth is we have been just plain BUSY doing everything we do here with our growing network of friends. The Dukes, Linda and Wayne stopped by to hang out for a month or so- the local chapter of The I Love Alaska and Prospecting Club just got bigger by two. We've really enjoyed their company again- spent a couple months parked next to their rig at Chicken Gold Camp back in 09. Riding with them while our fearless leaders give them the tour d' desert is just downright fun.

On one of our rides we stopped by Ojo de Aquila (Eye of the Eagle). The "eye" is actually a quite large hole in the ridge of the mountain, but from way down below it looks like a small opening. Quite the unusual formation I would assume given the makeup of the mountains in this area!

We also made a run through the majestic canyons of KOFA National Wildlife Refuge. The passage through the deepest part of the canyon is amazingly colorful and breath-takingly spectacular.

Then too, there has been a lot of "scouting" for desert blooms. It has been a relatively dry winter, but even the two little days of rain we had a while back have the flower "buds" starting to form on the cactus and I am about ready to start photographing the blooms as they open up- one species at a time (so far anyhow).

Today is St. Patrick's Day. That's what they say, but actually it's my birthday and that carries much more weight with me. Tom, our neighbor in the park, had a birthday yesterday, so we will celebrate together later today with our collective group of friends that don't have other plans for the day- it is a busy time here for sure. We smoked two pork butts again over night. That with whatever other dishes others show up with will comprise the evening meal. And we have a jumbo cake that Michelle rounded up somewhere that looks like a traditional St Paddy's Day cake, but is actually a flat of cupcakes covered in a solid sheet of green and yellow icing- the campers version of grab and go dessert. How perfect!

Marilyn and I went out dry-washing for gold yesterday. First time "skunked" on the dry washer as we came up empty in the gold department. The good news is I suppose that now we don't need to worry any more about getting skunked for the first time. But not to come home totally empty, we found a large (several feet think) vein of white quartz running through a ledge of the claim we were on so we broke it out with mall and chisels and loaded it in the Quig to bring home. Why would we do that? I mean all that heavy rock and all.... It seems we settled on an annual site at this campground and will return for this part of the year in coming seasons. It's a nifty campground, and we get to select our site, landscape it as we see fit, put up a storage shed and collect more "stuff." Oh yeah! Amenities at the campground include a desert golf course of 18 holes, a miniature golf course, a pool, a hot tub, a clubhouse with a gym, a craft room, a community events room, a real post office, unlimited trail rides right from the park- no need to trailer ATVs elsewhere for a ride, weekly special events, concerts, and on and on all included in the incredibly modest annual price of a site. Honestly, if they put in assisted living, I might make some long range plans (just kidding). The site we have selected has awesome views of the mountains and an oversize "corner" space. Right now it has nothing for landscaping, but does back up to a "wash" which makes it perfect for what we want to do with it. The previous tenant is still here a while longer, but when he pulls out we can post our progress on the lot as we develop it. Gotta start slowly though and most of the work can be roughed out next season. Birthday Boy Tom and Michelle will be taking the already nicely planted site next to us, and between the two of us we hope to make it a nifty little corner of the campground. Stay tuned!

Now one of the main reasons for this post was the way cactus are "regarded" here in camp. Saguaro cactus are a specifically protected species everywhere in Arizona. But here in our camp, they actually have the "Right of Way" in the roadways throughout the park. Very cool!

1 comment:

Donna K said...

Happy Birthday! And thank you for posting all the great photos.