2/1/13 Friday at Benson, AZ (Valley Vista RV-PPA)
Interesting how some mornings just fly by before we get on the road. Today we left at 10:20 am, driving to Holy Trinity Monastery (Benedictan). They had a bakery and thrift store sale today, so it seemed the best time to visit. It wasn’t far from our campground. We found the bakery and bought the peasant bread, the only thing without sugar. I can’t believe John resisted getting any cinnamon rolls or cinnamon chocolate volcano delights.
Next stop, Our Lady of Guadaloupe Chapel -outside and inside – really lovely and so meditative. They even had a place where you could write petitions for them to pray for. Isn’t that tree stump a cool altar?
John dropped me off at Supercuts, where I got my haircut, while he did some grocery shopping at Fry’s (Kroger store). Now it’s 12:45 as we head for the Park, hungry. On our way, 2 coyotes ambled across our road, with one limping. Cool. No time for photos though.
There are 2 Parks: East and West, separated by the city of Tucson. The East is larger, with more and higher mountains, more trails and campsites, while the West has a dense stand of saguaro cacti to set it apart. We heard that the East was the better of the two.
This is in the Sonoran Desert, where they have subtropical temperatures and get rain 2 times a year, a rare thing for a desert. Here there is more biodiversity because of this extra rain (10”/year).
This park has lots of Prickly Pear and Cholla (CHOY-ah) cacti along with it’s Saguaro. This photo is near the Javelina Rocks-named for the peccaries (like pigs) that like to hang out here. Notice the little Cholla at the base of the rocks on the right side?
We met a neat couple on the trail to the Freeman Homestead. I didn’t take a photo because all that’s left is a mound of dirt, from the deteriorating adobe. This couple (Jack and Julie) were commisserating with us over the lack of much in the way of ruins. Pretty soon we were walking the trail together
sharing travel experiences. They’re from Michigan and have a travel trailer. Other people sure do make life richer! They told us to be sure to walk the Tanque Verde Ridge Trail.
Prickly Pear and Saguaro, on our way up that trail. It goes for 18 miles up into the rim of the Rincon Mountains. The little distance we covered was pretty steep, but it had the prettiest scenery we’d seen in the whole park. It was starting to get dark, so we left, but we sure plan to hike this trail the next time we’re in the area.
On our way out of Tuscon, we had to stop suddenly, soon to realize that a bull was wandering over the road. He looked frightened – lumbering over to a fence, looking for his pals, I suspect. Interesting day – coyotes, birds (we saw a roadruner on the side of the road too) and a bull.
Home by 6 pm. I was hungry, so I got our tortilla soup hot. Peasant bread, buttered, was the perfect compliment. John soon joined me at the table!
Such a beautiful day to hike in a park – low 70’s. Boy did we soak it up.