Agave masts seem more abundant here in the Sonoran Desert this year. They stand out almost forest like in knee deep grasslands around Sonoita. The agave is made up a rosette of succulent spear tipped wedges, its name derived from a Queen Agave that existed within the realm of Greek Mythology. When proper age intersects proper conditions, a fast growing mast sprouts from the center. It's similar to birthing a child, in that all of the plant's store of energy is spent pushing the seed mast, up, up, up, into a striking tower of reproductive pods. Unfortunately, the agave always dies in "childbirth."
The "Holding Company" was fortunate to land the last two available spots in Ramsey Canyon RV park. It's a pleasant wooded campground in the Huachuca Mountains near Sierra Vista... a mix of permanent and come and go rigs, and only a half mile walk up-canyon to a Nature Conservancy Preserve (which, FYI, is closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, which explains why we were able to get those two sites). (sigh).
But, as the Wiseone's say, "Never let "facts" get in the way of a good story," to which I added, "nor rules stand in the way of a good hike." So we hopped the "Closed" gate, ignored the sign, and had the whole canyon... colorful birds, babbling brook, scampering critters, meandering path and all... to ourselves.
We continued hiking above the canyon proper to a ridge line of views. Big Brother's Border Balloon seemed to be following us... always hanging overhead no matter where or how far we hiked. It could have been an optical illusion because it was tethered, after all. Back at camp it floated directly over the campground; I knew that little blimp had cameras on board and suggested we all put tin foil in our skylights for privacy... especially in the bathrooms. You never know, what with Drones being used to spy on U. S. citizens nowadays.
After Ramsey Canyon we moved on toward Chiricahau, stopping along the way at White Water Draw to check on waterfowl. Not too many cranes like the last time we were here (they totally eclipsed the sun that day). A few long distance shots... nothing to brag about.
Here are a few cranes... above and below.
Ordinary ducks and geese...
In the rafters were a couple of barn owls.
Finally, Chiricahua's campground and a rendezvous with the Wiseones. It's not a park for the big rigs, but Goldie fit just fine in one site. Lots of shade, too.
Something's not "right" in one of the photos on this post. Can you spot it?
Next up, hiking the boulders in Chiricahua.
mark and bobbie.