Archives for category: Payson, Arizona

Well, I’m back at my Mogollon Rim Camp…this is the one that I referenced in my last blog (that was apparently 25 days ago), just next to the General Crook road, overlooking the big Green Valley.  I’d spent the last two weeks camped north of Flagstaff at this easy-access camp and, apparently, didn’t write jack-pooey.

Anyway, I’m about here:  https://goo.gl/maps/138RreCiecu.

Lol…”about here”.  With today’s location technology there’s no such thing as “about here”.  It’s more like “Iamf$#@%!&righthere”.  Every time I come to the realization that I’m so damned track-able, I think about the “preppers”.  These are the people that spend their time planning for the next Armageddon…without knowing what brings about the aforementioned Armageddon.

“You’re wearing camouflage, and carrying a Samsung S8″…

But I digress.

I have to say that I’m really excited to be back at this camp.  The primary reason is because I’m just outside the city limits of Pine.  My new, favorite, Arizona town.  Yea, I love Flagstaff, but they get enough press.  And every time I visit Flagstaff I realize that I can go into town, without having showered for days, and not stick out.  That can’t be good, can it?

Anywhooo…this camp is actually pretty cool…the wind rips up the face of the rim, blowing the dust of the UTV/motorcycle/ATV crowd away from me.  I can see for miles and miles (The Who song just evicted all other thoughts and now I’m singing it in my head) and I have a wonderful trail right outside my hovel that I can play with.

In fact, there are some crazy good trails around here.  All along the base of this huge abutment is the Highline trail.  It traverses about 52 miles from Pine to the 260 trailhead.  Legend has it this trail used to connect the homesteads in the area way back in the day.  It has spur trails that join from above and below, making it easy to create a great loop.

I’m sure I mentioned that the Arizona Trail uses the segment leading out of Pine, eventually ascending near Washington Park…which is right below where I’m camped.  It’s a segment that I have not hiked…yet.  Passage 26 is just over 20 miles, making it a great two day trip, presuming you have a shuttle.  Otherwise it’s a 4-day, out and back trip.

In fact, as I type this I’m wondering if I should beg one of you to join me for a two-day, shuttled adventure…hmmm?

Digressing again.

So, my plan for the next two weeks is to head into town on a few occasions to try other restaurants.  My biggest challenge is going to be avoiding Mi Familia, the local Mexican food joint.  I hear it’s pretty damned awesome!

Let me know if you’d like to arrange for a shuttle/hike…my only real opportunity would be the weekend of June 17/18…just a thought.

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I’m finally back on the road.  This time I’m posted up on top of the Mogollon Rim, right near the General George Crook trail.  The history books tell us it was constructed under the direction of General George Crook in the early 1870’s as a supply/tactical road joining Fort Whipple to Fort Apache a couple hundred miles apart.  This route is still visible today, in many parts, and I’m sitting right next to it.

Every morning I walk the trail with my coffee and dogs, and as I do, my mind whooshes back in time to when this trail was a well-traveled thoroughfare.  The “Wild West” was in full swing and the Civil War was still fresh in everyone’s mind.  Arizona had just recently become a territory and was, by all accounts, still a very primitive landscape.

It’s easy to romanticize the era of the cowboy, even if it only lasted a couple of decades.  But the truth was that life was still very hard back then, especially in a region so remote.  The Apaches were on the warpath.  This was, in part, why General Crook was even in the area, to subdue the restless natives.

I am about half way through a book about the original colonies right now.  By the end of the 19th century most of the native peoples in the east were already subjugated.  But not in Arizona.  In fact, “The Apache Wars” were just getting started.

20170511_172657Anyway, I’m here in my camp right next to the trail.  I’ve got a commanding view of the foothills below.  Every now and then a car drives by, but for the most part I’m out here alone.  I wanted to post up closer to the AZT, but I’m also bound by the need for a good mobile signal.

Camping in a travel trailer is really different from the camping I used to do.  In fact, I almost don’t consider this “camping”, rather it’s “staying in a trailer in the middle of nowhere”.  I don’t know why I have this bias toward RV camping, it’s not really fair.  Most of my camping in the past was while backpacking.  Even when I “car camped” I still had a tent.

Also, I’m so close to the the rim road that if I’d passed by this camp back then I’d most likely think to myself “why even come out here if you’re going to be that luxurious and close to the road”?  Heck, I might take my tent and sleeping bag a mile or so into the woods just so I can pretend to be in a remote area.

Until then, I’m going to sit here in my “office” and roast weenies over a fire.