It’s early on Friday the 13th of March. The wind is whipping around the trailer here in Montgomery, Alabama and we are on the last two days of the Green Eggs and Ham rally!
But I want to write about our last few days in Arizona…while the memory is still intact.
We leave our lovely parking lot in the Tonto National Forest. It is time for David to have his blood tested again and there are groceries to be bought. Between the wait at Walgreens’ clinic and fighting the senior crowd at Fry’s, we leave Apache Junction much later than planned.
Our destination is the Desert Museum in Tucson. There’s a nice campground close to the museum but it may be full. It does not take reservations. I research free camping in Tucson in find a BLM close to our destination. Nina and Paul warn that the road is rough and there’s some broken glass scattered throughout the camp.
After several hours of negotiating traffic, we find the area and, at first glance, it does not look too bad.
The sunset gives us another visual delight.
David settles in with his book.
We notice a bit of broken glass as we park. By the next day, with the changing sunlight, I realize that we are surrounded by glass and dog poo! David decides to nap and I decide to go find Gilbert Ray, the campground that keeps coming up in conversations.
After consulting Google Maps and making a few turns, I arrive at Tucson Mountain Park. The beauty is overwhelming! How can this be so pretty and our spot be so….less than pretty?
On to Gilbert Ray, stopping at the office to find that there are campsites available..even though it is Saturday afternoon! After riding through all the loops, drinking in the lovely landscape, I wonder what kind of mood the husband will be in if I suggest that we break camp and move…NOW!
Luckily…the nap is over….and we break camp in record speed!
Love this guy! He looks like he is directing traffic!
Camping at Gilbert Ray is like camping in a desert garden!
We pay for two nights…staying long enough to visit the Desert Museum. And feeling nostalgic…already sad that our paradise visit is ending.
We hear from our neighbor to not miss the museum’s free flight show.
The show is astounding! It starts with two ravens, then a great-horned owl, then hawks….two are red tail hawks. The birds fly freely, soaring out of sight into the clouds. The handlers are not concerned when wild red tails bombard their wards, trying to knock them out of the wild birds’ territory. They explain that their birds know where good living and easy food can be found…so they always return.
We return to camp for lunch and return to see the rest of the park.
There are coyotes.
Big Horn Sheep.
It’s a perfect day and a perfect way to end our winter in the desert.