Sunday, May 19, 2013

Time To Move On



Privacy fence in Pinos Altos, NM, 6 miles north of Silver City.


Hard to believe our 3 weeks in Silver City are just about over. We keep finding new trails to hike and forest roads to drive on. In fact with the Gila National Forest so close, it would take a long time to exhaust all the hiking opportunities nearby.

Boonie suggested a hike to Cross Mountain the other day. A short 1.5 mile climb up to a cross with views of Pinos Altos, a former gold mining town along the Continental Divide. I think Boonie had an epiphany at the top.


Doing an internet search about the cross, I found several different versions of why it was originally built. This seems to be the most common explanation, but over the years it’s significance became religious. Believe it or not.

“Apache attacks continued to plague the area until 1874, when a deal was struck whereby, as long as a cross remained standing on an adjacent mountain, there would be no fighting. Both sides held to the deal and the cross was upgraded a total of three times, just to be on the safe side.”

This skull was posed on a dead tree trunk near the cross.


Views of Pinos Altos from the cross. We’re really happy with the excellent zoom on our Panasonic Lumix FZ200.





Yesterday we hiked along the Tadpole Ridge trail, about another 7 miles north of Pinos Altos on Hwy 15, which leads to the Gila Cliff Dwellings. Most trails in the mountains climb from the start, and this was no exception. After a couple miles it leveled out and went along the ridge.

We were accompanied by Debbie, Boonie and his sweet dog, Coffee Girl.  Good company, lots of wildflowers, scenic vistas and perfect weather made for a great few hours of hiking.

Boonie, Coffee Girl and me. Sorry Debbie’s mom, no pictures of her (again).


Views from the trail.





After we dropped off Boonie and his pup, we took a 3 mile detour down a one lane forest service road to a meadow. It was rough and rocky in places but not too bad until we came to a stream crossing. We were surprised to see water, as dry as it’s been here. We got out to assess the stream, and Jim decided it would be fine to drive through. I stayed out and watched and waited, and he made it without any trouble. This off-road stuff is hard for me to get used to!


Tomorrow we are heading to new territory for us, near Alpine, Arizona, where we hope to find a quiet spot in the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest to hang out over the Memorial Day weekend. We’ll see how that turns out.

The cats are driving us crazy and Jim thinks we need to find them a real home where they would have more room to run and jump. We love them dearly and it would be hard to give them up, and I ‘m sure we won’t find anyone out there to take them, but I tend to agree with him, they need a bigger place.

Oh, but they can be so sweet sometimes.




  1. Beautiful cats. I would have trouble giving them up too.

  2. Looks like some wonderful hiking. The wildflowers are so pretty.

    Yes, off roading can get ones heart beating quickly. I was doing really well until we almost got trapped in a very narrow area in Anza Barrego Desert Park. The rocks were huge and the area was barely wide enough for us. I couldn't even get out to help, I was paralyzed. John had to keep building up rocks so we could get over the area. It was short but really scared me. Now I chicken out sooner. Yes, we have Jeep Unlimited but no extras and no winch. Good luck !!! Water crossings are fun if not too deep.

  3. Great story about the cross. I'm loving all the hiking you are doing. Can't those kitties race from the front to the back and around and around? They sure are cute. I'll bet you'd miss them.

  4. We spent October and November in Alpine. Had intended to stay at Alpine Divide and/or Luna Lake Forest Service campgrounds, but ended up at a full-service campground about half-way between the two and doing day trips to the Forest Service campgrounds. Can recommend the private campground (Alpine Village) as having the friendliest owners ever!

    Loved Piños Altos for its photo ops.

    See some pix from there at my blog:



    Can't wait to go back to spend more time there. Envy your three weeks; we were there only a week.

  5. Another photo of "Mr Incognito" !!!
    Box Canyon Mark

  6. Looks like you had a great time in the area. I sure am looking forward to your next stop.