It's a short drive to Tombstone on Wednesday morning. We're back at our good friends Donnie and Anna's for the third time since we went full-time. We mooch-dock in their driveway, and spend lots of time hanging out in their home. We've known Donnie since high school, and his wonderful wife Anna for over ten years. They are some of our most favorite peeps.
When Anna gets home from work (we can't wait for her October retirement!), the guys take off for a college basketball game in Douglas, and she and I meet her sister in town for dinner.
Donnie is a winning bass fisherman and he and Bill get in a day of fishing on nearby Patagonia Lake. They have a great time! Tessa and I run into Sierra Vista for errands, getting back home around 3:00. Always good to get things done, but probably not as much fun as a day on the water.
Anna is off for the weekend and Saturday morning we head out for our trip to the Chiracahua National Monument. They brought us here the end of 2015, on our first visit, but it was snowing and we were turned around at the campground. Today we have temps in the high 60's, and the views are incredible! All the parking lots are full, but we manage to see much of the beauty without others.
|The Visitor Center is busy.|
|Although dry in the higher elevations, the creek is running near the VC.|
|Columns peek from behind oaks and junipers.|
|North facing pillars with green veneer.|
|Blue beauty on a branch.|
|Massive views at Echo Canyon|
|Sulphur Springs Valley in the distance.|
|Donnie shows me the best spot to take the photo while Anna glasses the hillside.|
|Acres of amazing formations.|
|Tessa is less than impressed with the snowy trail.|
|There he is!|
|Forehead on the right, deep eye, large nose, rough lips.|
|Eye lash just below his eyebrow.|
|Harris Mountain (the small one in the front)|
|Cochise Stronghold in the center with Dragoon Mountains to the left.|
|Wonderful views and information in the exhibit building.|
|Seeing what they can see|
|Perfect weather continues.|
|From the summit highway.|
|Driving by the lower columns.|
|A mile out of the monument it is a different world.|
Before the big game on Sunday we take a drive to the other side of Sierra Vista. Carr Canyon is closed at the gate due to snow and ice, but the nearly dry waterfall is pretty from the road. Instead we continue south to Montezuma Pass where we visit the little Visitor Center, full of historical and cultural information. Coronado's expedition of 1540-1542 passed through the area early, eventually taking them to the Grand Canyon to the west, and what is now Kansas to the east.
|Carr Canyon waterfall|
|Pilot and co-pilot|
|The day before we were in the furthest mountain range.|
|Donnie and Anna at Montezuma VC|
|A lovely circle of information honoring the four directions|
|History shared from different perspectives|
|Dia de las Muertos|
|Arizona White Oak is thick throughout the canyon|
Monday it's back to work for Anna and the three of us are lazy slugs all day :-)