Thursday, December 31, 2009

Merry Xmas from Arizona

The last minute plan was to head to Chiricahua for some nice winter desert camping. However, as our trips to Arizona often turn out, we hit a snowstorm. Chiricahua was buried under 6 inches of snow and hidden under heavy clouds. So we continued a bit further west to Cochise Stronghold, also buried under 6 inches of snow, but with clear skies.

The dogs love to play "King of the rock", but they're not match for Troy.

Eureka discovered a new game by jumping on frozen huecos to break up the ice, then fishing sheets of ice out of the puddle and eating that ice. (The butt in the air means she has something super special in her mouth).
After Cochise, we moved on to Madera Canyon for a couple of nights. Where we discover many great (but icy) hiking trails, and a good mountain bike trail. Near the mountain bike trail was an undeveloped camping area, but I can't seem to find any info on either the bike trail or that camping area. It's all along a dirt road called Prospect Road.

After that, we moved on to the big city of Tucson. Below is a photo of the San Xavier Mission just south of town:
We spent our last night in Arizona at Mt Lemmon where we enjoyed more hiking and biking. Then we started the drive back home (via the Gila Wilderness), and naturally found ourselves in another snowstorm. We stopped for the night at Datil Well campground near Highway 60 in New Mexico, and awoke to find the road out buried under several inches of snow!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Dog Bouldering

I thought we were going for a hike, but the dogs wanted to climb rocks. In fact, they're such awesome climbers that I never caught any of the ascents, just the down-climbs.

Easy warm-up on a nice friction slab.


This is the boulder problem that separates the dogs from the puppies. Eureka made a couple of failed attempts before Vixen quickly showed her how it's done. Eureka eventually got to the top with some help from her spotter. But she wasn't willing to try the down-climb.

Eureka takes note while Vixen prepares for the toughest down-climb of the day.
Eureka enjoying a brief moment of victory on top of the rock.