The test of an adventure is that when you are in the middle of it, you say to yourself, "Oh, now I've got myself into an awful mess; I wish I were sitting quietly at home." And the sign that something is wrong with you is when you sit quietly at home wishing you were out having lots of adventure. -Thornton Wilder

The nice thing about being confused is you get a chance to notice things a lot better than if you knew where you were going.

Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Day 118

A couple weeks back I went to a place I had camped before years ago called Mittry Lake on the Colorado River.  It has individual spots along the river to camp at and as I crawled along the rough washboard road every spot was occupied.  It wasn't looking too good then all of a sudden I came upon a nice spot overlooking the water. 

Behind me was a branch of the lake and then I discovered there was no cellphone service to be had.  This meant no blogging or no nothing on the Internet.  As I ate lunch I thought about it and thought maybe up the road a ways further, so I moved on. Still nothing and no more camp spots.  I couldn't turn around and if I could I wasn't relishing crawling back on that rough road only to find someone took the primo spot.  I crossed the river over into California to go to Senator Wash where again I have been a long time ago.  Well now it is no longer free and there were hoards of people there.  Now what?  I went back out to the highway, turned left and returned to where I was back in December finding it peaceful and quiet once again. 

Its nice to have a plan but always leave room for changes to your plan.
Some patriotic soul swam across and climbed those rocks to plant the Stars and Stripes.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Day 116

I doubt I will ever grow tired of seeing sunsets.
This one at the end of a rainy day.

This the following evening.

This morning's walk revealed another plant in bloom.

I thought I knew this one but after a check in my desert wildflower guide book, nope. 
Not a paper-daisy. Wrong color of flower.  Maybe some sort of poppy although the book doesn't show poppies where I am here in Arizona.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Day 114

Another day, another mine.
I almost missed this one but just caught it out of the corner of my eye as I passed by.

There was a lot of mouse and rat poop in this mine and I thought that a bit unhealthy to be inhaling the dust I would stir up so I went no further.  You can just make out the large midden, the pile of sticks and twigs from countless generations of rodents that have lived here. 

Friday, February 17, 2017

Day 113

This day I rode deeper into the canyon just to see what there was to see.
Looking back down the grade I had just come up.
This was about as much as my little bike could manage.

I parked it and walked the last 100 yards or so thinking there would be some grand view at the ridge.
There wasn't.  It continued on down into another narrow canyon

It doesn't look like much but this is fairly steep and a long hard pull.
Photos never tell the real story. 

On my way back to camp I spotted the first real bloom so far.

I thought this might be Rabbit Bush but after consulting my desert wildflower guide book, Rabbit Bush has yellow flowers.  A plant called Fairyduster has pinkish flowers like this but it only grows a foot or so high, so I don't know what this is.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Day 112

I went back yet again looking for new mines to explore.
This site they were just scraping the surface dirt and rocks for gold.
No mine shafts to explore.

The shacks looked in disrepair and I suspect they were leftovers from long ago when travel to and from the mine wasn't as easy as it is these days.

 Elsewhere I did locate a new mine but decided this one was pushing my comfort limit.
  This one required crawling whereas the others I could stand up in.  
And those big boulders placed in the entrance was enough to deter me from entering.

On the way back to camp I came across this pet cemetery near two small RV "parks" where people live year around it appears.  Of course this made me think of my Sinbad. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Day 111

I went back to the mines.
To answer SC's question, they are after gold.  I asked some locals.
These two were posted Danger Stay Out.
I had to take a look.

Okay, straight down at an angle.
I decided to mind the sign.

This one was even more so.  
And to think the miners go down into that!

Another mine which was a dead end not too far in.

This mine I hesitated entering thinking as someone commented yesterday When I was young, "Yeah but now I don't think so."  Yet I took a step in to get out of the light, which led to another step and another and soon I was going for it. The shaft eventually open out almost straight up.
I thought I may of been in one of those two shafts mentioned above but I think this was different.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Day 110

The good kind you can walk into.

 This is just inside the entrance.  I intended to go back and get a picture of the opening in the side of the hill and forgot.  I was too excited I guess.

Deeper in the flash on my little camera did quite well.

Farther on was this mummified dog.

You can make your own story up about why he was there.
I have my ideas.

The shaft branched off in two directions, one a short dead end and the other with this screened gate.
I felt I had gone far enough and turned backed.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Day 107

                                           Sunrise this morning at the Indian Casino

I left the previous camp heading west back into Yuma, Arizona to get a few supplies, take care of some business and try to decide what to do and where to go next.  I ended up crossing back over into California thinking of walking into Mexico for the day today at the border crossing.  Now that I am here I've lost interest in that and really do not want to be California so I'll turn back for Arizona once again.  Oh the decesions one has to make living the life of a nomad.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Day 104

Tomorrow I will be moving on from Wild Woman wash.
This is the view I have had for the past week from my front yard.
That's the wash beyond the fire ring.

I've pretty much explored the area around me not ever finding anything of great interest.
I like these little cacti.  They don't poke you.

I did find two old style coffee cans the other day.  You remember the one with the key soldered to the top and you'd peel the metal strip away all around the can and remove the lid. 

 I was able to get the rusted lids off without destroying the cans.  
No money or treasure map inside. 

I liked it here though.
  I was never short-changed when it came to the evening sunsets.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Day 102

The last two days I've pretty much stayed at camp enjoying the quiet and solitude, reading books 
(I have three going at the same time) and listening to the birds chirping.  That's about it.  Can't ask for anything more.  So here is last evening's sunset.

And this morning's sunrise.

 Well I did find a woman's Arizona driver's license.  It expired on her birthday 2/22/2015.  I Googled her name and found no foul play like a reported missing person or kidnapping or homicide, 
so that was good.  I could get back to my reading with a clear mind.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Day 100

100 days.  That is longer than any of the trips Sinbad and I took together.  Oh how I have missed him on this trip.  We were always on the move to the next spot over the hill or around the bend.  This trip was to be more of a test for me to see if I could stay put in one place for long periods of time.  I have learned I can stay still for a couple weeks at a time.  No problem.  Just give me enough land to explore and books to read and I'll be fine.

I am camped on the banks of Wild Woman wash.  It is a wide watercourse that for most of the year is dry as it is presently.  I walked down the wash for close to a mile and got bored as there was not one thing of interest.  I climbed up the bank on the other side and soon came to a barbed wire fence that stretched off into the distance.  I walked alongside of it for a mile with nothing to report.

Back at the RV I saw I had two visitors while I was away.  
Boy, the Jehovah Witnesses will hunt you down even in the deserts of Arizona.  
Seems there's no getting away from them knocking on your door.
Thank goodness for that Wild Woman for being there for me.

Friday, February 3, 2017

Day 99

This morning I took a 4 mile walk around this new area I am camped at.  Unlike the last camp 10 miles to the north, this land is very much different.  It is flat hard packed sand which makes for easy going.  That is about the only plus for it.  The plant life is like 95% creosote bush, very few saguaros or other cacti.  I came across absolutely no signs of illegal migrant activity.  They must be passing through in some other area.  But I can say for the few cholla that there are here, these things are more like a tree.  I've never seen them this big.  This one is at least 10 feet tall.

Norm Died '98
That's what it said at the top.  This was out in the middle of nowhere.

Heading back to camp I came across this.  
Okay, let's see what they want me to see.

50 feet away.  No, its not Norm for that was a mile or so distant.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Day 98

I've moved south to a new area just outside of Why, Arizona.  What you see in the distance, a service station, market and community center is about all there is here.  Why, Why?  Well long ago when the residents wanted to be put on a map they had to come up with a name for their "town".  Being it was situated at where Highway 86 branched off towards Tucson from Highway 85, a "Y" in the road, that was good enough.  "Where do you live?"  "At the Y."  Well the state of Arizona had a policy that any town name must have at least three letters to it.  So the founding fathers changed it to Why. 
Since then the Y in the road has been changed to a T in the road for safety reasons.  
No movement has ever been put worth to change the name of the town to "Tea".

Here is a helicopter giving another helicopter a lift.

Last night's sunset.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Day 97

This is an owl pellet.  
The owl will regurgitate the undigestible parts of the rodent it swallowed whole.  

I found this water hole in the middle of the desert.

It was part natural and part enhanced by man.  There was some mining activity nearby so that is probably the ones who did the little bit of cement work.

Now it is a valuable water source for the animals in the area, including this butterfly.
Unfortunately in the summer it will be a dried up and that is when the animals need it the most.

The end of the trail for somebody.  
Maybe they needed that water hole.