Having been dropped off at Arizona State University in Tempe by our wonderful trail angel hostess Julie , both Stacey and I soon found ourselves on bus route 30 heading towards Apache Junction. Eight miles short of our destination, and with diploma in hand, we got a ride within ten minutes by a Minnesotan snow bird who took us to a supermarket and out into the great big world.
It seems as if Apache Junction is a senior citizen mecca for the upper Midwest and Canada. Stacey was certainly the youngest snowbird at a local Cafe where everyone was very curious about our backpacks and upcoming adventures on the Grand Enchantment Trail. One gentleman even gave us twenty dollars to support our journey.
Two quick and easy hitches later we finally arrived at First Water Trailhead.... Our gateway into the Superstition Wilderness.
Water was magically abundant in most of the washes before us. One could have easily have taken only one liter each between water sources.
The Saguaro Cactus desert that surrounded us was green with vibrant life with flowers blooming around every corner. There could have been about at least 40 or more different herbs and brush eagerly showcasing their goods to happy bees whose many hives we found were in old sturdy oaks.
The recent rains kept the dust down as even a few minor showers cooled our way through the haunted mountains before us.
It's as if the beauty in each step we took amongst the towering sedimentary peaks were whispering to us the secret to the Lost Dutchman's Mine.
We were indeed rich to be back on the trail after only having finished the Arizona National Scenic Trail just four months earlier.
With dew on us the first night and brisk winds at the higher elevations the following nights, it was surely only the onset of Spring in the backcountry.
The trail zigged up one canyon only to zag the next canyon. It would not be too hot or too cold in the lower desert ahead of us after having to resupply in Superior, Arizona.
We were taking the full plunge into the very mystery of the unknown.
Where the four elements blend together.... true magic can certainly be found in an oasis blessed with Enchantment.