2/29/2016: Hiking Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area

This has to be one of my all time favorite hikes.

My mom said she had a fun hike for me in Cave Creek, Arizona at the Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area.  We got an early start on a beautiful winter morning (spring conditions anywhere else in the country).

With Cave Creek running through the lower portions of the property, the area had a certain lushness not usually found in the desert.  But, as we progressed up the slope of Elephant Mountain, I could not recall a place where I had seen so many large Saguaros so closely spaced.  Add in the Ocotillos, Ironwood, jojoba, and wildflowers and the desert here had so many layers of interest and color that I could only describe it as lush.

I had to apologize to my mother for slowing her down as I repeatedly stopped to take pictures.  A 5 mile hike has never taken so long but I could not more than 10 feet without finding something else to watch, identify, or admire.  I hate to say, but this hike spoiled me before I saw the “Superbloom” in Death Valley.  This was a super bloom in it’s own rite with different wildflowers blooming at each elevation and aspect.  Unfortunately, every desert hike from here on out will be compared to this one and it is going to be hard to beat.

DSC_0107
Elephant Mountain
DSC_0076
Mule deer watching us
DSC_0085
Lone Saguaro
DSC_0116
Saguaro pups
DSC_0108
Trail through the saguaros
IMG_4654
Looking down on Cave Creek
DSC_0142
Toxostoma curvirostre (Curve-billed Thrasher)
IMG_4640
Yucca baccata (Banana Yucca)
DSC_0055
Ocotillo blossoms
DSC_0192
Saguaro
DSC_0236
Wildflowers along the trail at every elevation
DSC_0225
Elephant Mountain
DSC_0240
Desert wildflowers
DSC_0252
Solar Oasis

 

2 thoughts on “2/29/2016: Hiking Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area”

    1. Thank you. It would not have been the same hike at 110 degrees. The pleasant weather, morning light, wildflower blossoms, plant variety, bird songs, and panoramic views all made for an epic experience.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s