Sunday, September 13, 2015

The Grand Enchantment Trail ~ Part 8

To avoid private property in the Black Rock Area, we bushwhacked up yet another Canyon to tie into a trail that would take us up higher into the mountains. 

We found the trail easy enough, but I wasn't exactly sure where I thought I was when we were making our own route. Good thing our smartphone verified that we were truly on track by using its GPS feature.

Climbing into forest service land, pinyon pines and juniper became the dominant trees. In an old fire area, brush such as manzanita was overgrowing and obscuring the trail. 

We also saw our first bear scat of the trip. The higher we went the more the trail disappeared. 

Thank God for the blue flagging that we attentively followed. 

The highlight of the section was Holdout Overlook where we could closely see the route we had taken just the day before far below us. 

Harmonizing with Nature makes you look and feel good.  This is an extreme human makeover allowing for Nature to allow us to naturally blush our skin.

To our surprise, the trail down the mountain was maintained and recently brushed. 

On Klondyke Road, we did a double take when a Tom Tom car with video capabilities like Google has stopped to see if we needed any water.

Our approach to the Pinaleno Mountains took us to a cross country bush whack up a ridge line where we improvised a camp to the setting sun.

A packrat who was strapped of salt decided to eat my straps on my pack during the night. They certainly do have razor sharp teeth.

Descending from the Mount Graham area, we encountered some of our first extensive snow in a north facing forest for a few miles.  

It was extremely windy as we descended down Ash Creek, and so we walked into the evening till we got out of the canyon and away from a Howling good time of an evening.  Instead of listening to the wind roar through us, we instead enjoyed listening to coyotes howl at the moonshine.

UP and over the Sky Island we went until we descended into the Town of Safford for two days off at a local motel.  It was time to recharge our batteries in more ways than one.

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