The Arizona Trail: Part 12

Tuesday, April 2nd, 2019

Before joining everyone for breakfast, Stretch tossed us a couple of her dehydrated meals from her resupply. We were excited to cold soak them later on. We went with her, Marney, Jim, and a couple named Radar and Coatimundi to Oracle Patio Cafe.

Our breakfast was delicious, and Marney and Jim were beyond hospitable, but it was time to hike. Marney shipped us all to the spots where we had been picked up, us being returned to Highway 77. We took the dirt road to Tiger Mine trailhead as a plane flew rather low overhead.

There were a number of day hikers around, and we met a thru hiker named Kidska. We’d also catch up to Radar and Coatimundi. The wildflowers were in full effect and they told us that since the 10 years they have lived in Arizona, this was the biggest super bloom they’ve ever seen.

We bolted passed everyone, but they would catch up at one of the water caches that Marney and Jim had left for everyone. They set out new water caches every 48 hours just out of the kindness of their hearts, so hikers like us can stay safe. Oh yeah, and candy too!

A section hiker named Rosey who had stayed at the Chalet ended up meeting us there too. He had been dropped off at a much further trailhead earlier in the morning.

We hiked on through the stunning wildflower wonderland. There were so many flowers and cacti through the rolling hills, I struggled to keep moving since it was so distracting.

It got really windy and Frisbee nearly stepped on our first rattlesnake. It didn’t rattle and blended in with the trail, a little too well. Then Frisbee got a piece of cholla cactus stuck in his leg. Once we removed it, which was a little more tricky than expected, we trekked on.

We took a nice long break laying in the middle of the trail, out in the sun. We were feeling unmotivated, tired, and thirsty. The next water source was Cow Head tank which was way off trail. To get to it, we needed to walk down a very steep hill. There was likely an easier way had we searched for it before the climb, but there was no trail, which made locating it a little challenging.

There were a lot of bees, and the water tasted a little metallic, but we cameled up, filled our bottles, then pushed ourselves to Beehive Well. The water source there was one of the ones that Marney said looked like pea soup, but there was plenty of space to camp there.

It was very pretty too! There was a rock walk to our left, a windmill to our backs, and a colorful sunset to close out the day.


21.0 miles (33.8 km)

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