Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Higher Tucson Exploring

               A hearty hello to everyone that visits this page!   I am working on tons of new posts, pictures, and features for this page.  For much more Exploring please check out my first blog page at www.wyomingjack.blogspot.com     I fully intend to start to attempt to sell some of my better pictures as frameable greeting cards.  I was hoping that things would slow down a little bit at the beginning of this new year.  But in our life things might actually be going at an even faster speed some how.  When I get the photo page up I will share it for sure!  

        On this day the temperatures were perfect.  Especially for mid January.  In fact I was just bragging to my family back home in Wyoming about Exploring on this day, in my shorts!  And NO I was not just wearing shorts and nothing else, thanks for asking.  I found myself in the hills near where I work-- Casino Del Sol.  The above shot is actually from up on one of the mountain tops greatly zoomed in.  If you take I-19 South and exit onto Valencia than head to the right, opposite the airport you will eventually pass this area.   I actually started roaming very close to the casino.  At the stop light that takes you to The Casino Of The Sun, I took a right.   I do not know road names or the names of the great hills I was Exploring in on this day, sorry.  I noticed a sign that said "to speaks trail."   And thought I would find a neat trail through the desert that wander around the mountains also.   All I found was lot of houses.  I am now pretty sure that Speaks Trail, was the name of one or two of the property owners, not a neat trail to check out.   In any case I back tracked back down Valencia to the QT gas station.  And took a left at the stop light.  Just before the road dead ended I parked across from the fenced in power station.  Grabbed my water bottle and took up a dirt trail to roam. 

Looking back towards Valencia.
It always seems that the best trails lead straight up.
Sometimes straight up in both directions  coming and going.

On this day the clouds could not decide what they are doing. 
The sky went from all on sunshine to cloudy and back again multiple times. 
I do believe I saw a little bit of rain before the day was done.

Sweating out some sweat felt good. 
Although all of the climbing quickly reminded me how I am not in the best of shape anymore. 

                                                        Some of the surrounding hills.

I soon was not sure if I was on an actual trial or a water run off.

Near the top!

I found this flower or weed thriving way up in the face of this mountain side. 
Proof that with a will one can survive any where. 

This rock ridge makes for a great break in the city scape down below. 

Watch that first step!

From the top  again looking towards Valencia.

Greatly zoomed in view of downtown Tucson.
I enjoyed the view for quiet awhile. 
Mainly while I was catching my breath again. 
Fair warning, there is a large school below the hills---so roaming on that side of the mountain 
with a camera might seem creepy.  

When I returned to my car it was still early in the day and I realized that I have never ventured 
down Valencia past the casino. 
I needed some more quiet road time  so kept driving. 
I took the above picture while driving. 
Something I do not recommend attempting at all.

I soon came to Ryan's Airfield.
Where I had to snap this shot  that just screams Arizona.

At some point I ended up by Tucson Mountain 
and was in the park.
Another place I have never been before. 

So many trails  So little time!!

My butt was tired of sitting in the car, but my legs kind of enjoyed the sitting action.
My butt won out, and I took off down an actual trail.
Above a deserted walking stick lies in wait for the next smaller hiker. 

Please  write that down!

This trail soon decided it wanted to venture uphill so I headed back to the car.

A short distance down a very curvy road I came to Old Tucson.

To me it looked an awful lot like Tombstone, but much more expensive.
I did wander through the gift shop though.

I realize that this town is all about reenactments and such  but 
it still kind of bugged me to see this sign outside of Old Tucson.
I mean isn't the gun what won the old west??

Tomorrow I am off to find another trail and some more pictures of course!

As Always


Friday, January 16, 2015

Take A Back Road.

     Last week I had some free time and decided to take a little road trip.  Since I drive from Benson to Tucson at least five days a week for work, a leisurely trip down a long twisty back road seemed in order.  I was going to continue this the next day with my first trip to Nogalas.  But it was raining heavily and quite frankly I got nervous about going to a boarder town.   I did end that day with a great hike near Tucson that I will post about very soon.   I know that I promised my next post would be about our family's amazing trip to Lego Land in California, but I like to keep this page as local as I can so am stalling again on posting.   A very picture filled post will appear some day.  For even more Exploring and pictures  please check out my first blog page at www.wyomingjack.blogspot.com      


I actually started just down I-10 from Benson heading towards Tucson.

This subdivisions windmill has always fascinated me -located just past the fire station.
I even found a running waterfall--just visible in this picture. 

The surrounding clouds were amazing all day.
Especially so later in the day  just before it started dumping rain on me. 

Looking towards Sierra Vista

Recently I learned that the Arizona Trail come through this area.
And on this bright sunny morning I returned to the area to Explore. 
Unfortunately for me a bike trek was going on this Saturday
and my actual time on the trail was short, because I 
quickly grew tired of jumping of the trail for bikers. 

One can park near both of these great bridges 
and meet trail on both sides.

The concrete bridge was built in 1921.

I very quickly got tired of dodging mountain bikes and ventured further down the road. 
The above building has always drawn me. 
I have seen some amazing missions and such in this area and at first thought this was one also.
And than I could not decide if it was some ones home.  On this day
I ventured closer to check out the building.  Again right off of I-10.

I have talked before of Exploring areas that may or may not be private property. 
But in all fairness as you can see above   the gate is not locked
So I consider this fair game to Explore!
If this is your property and you are now angered, 
someone other than myself took these pictures.

Turns out this building was not a mission or church
but used to be a winery.
The person taking these pictures could not find a way inside the building.

Not even a mile down the road was these buildings to Explore.
Just before the big steak house  for those of you wondering. 

Again amazing clouds.

At this point it was getting later in the day and I decided it was time to roam 
back to the Sonoita exit. 
Above is a road side table   not much to draw me to wish to eat here.
This was about when the dark clouds started to circle the area.

Welcome to Sonoita!

Metal sculptures on the way into town.

Just beside the inn was this store   
with expensive gas and
life saving, for me caffeine!
I was very happy to find cherry Pepsi on tap here.

Rustic old town bar that was great fun to walk through.
The signs advertise live music all weekend
and I was about to stick around for some,
but really did not want to drive home in the dark on this night. 
Although the grey skies were nearing dark already.

Right about here is also a huge tower.
I at first thought it was for radio  but could pick up no radio stations in this whole area.
Than I thought it was for cell phones. 
But could not use my cell phone here either. 
Pauses me to wonder what the huge tower was really for?

Huge very nice fairgrounds for such a small community.

Just in front of the fairgrounds.

Propane tank I ventured across.

Further still I drove into Patagonia.

We have been to this area as a family before when we visited the lake. 
A nice trip for sure.
Especially when I was greatly wondering if there were such large bodies of water in the state of Arizona. 
On this day I had more time to visit the actual town.
A beautiful town nestled in the hills. 
But I have to say after visiting again it is very backwoods.
I kept listing for banjo music with each step. 
Still a purdy town for sure!
Sorry great towns folk.
I call everything as I see it.

Great park with an amazing view!

I parked near here ready to Explore.
And happy to see that even the bathrooms were covered in art.
The middle of the town was a park like setting.
Also full of art. 
And even the trees were circled by tie ups for horses.

This entire church was encased in amazing 
stained glass windows. 

About mid town I found it amazing that the entire time I was in town, 
these police vehicles were parked in front of the main bar.

Speaking of cops I also found this gas station very amusing.

Main  street  USA

On this day I did not have time to venture into this coffee shop.
But if nothing else it has a great name!

Old rail road station.
These buildings are always beyond great.

More magical hills in the area.

I hate to distract from such a great trip by talking badly about this town.

But in the midst, litterly just beside a large amazing building like the old train station would be a beyond run down, beat up, but still lived in dump.

Another windmill.

Nice little house beside a trailer park.
Just watch that first step out of the top left door.

Old school near the top of the town.

And yes that is an outhouse to the left of this picture.

Surrounded by more great hills as the rain went away for the most part. 

Another great trip in amazing Arizona.

As always

**Happy Trails!!**