Saturday, February 5, 2011

Spur Cross Revisited

I wanted to get back out to Spur Cross and try the 6 mile loop that Cindy and I had scoped out the week before. Our friend Jet and his dog, Scooter came along with us. I knew it was a little more remote area than some of our hikes, but figured we could do it in about 3 hours.
Because of other committments, we started out in the afternoon. It was a beautiful day. This little burro actually greeted us in the parking lot at the end of the day. Along with his friend the mule. The mule and Scooter came nose to nose. The mule didn't like Scooter and tried to chase him a little. I thought Jet was going to punch him.
 Any way, start of the hike, lots of happy faces, both human and canine.
 The water and area is really pretty and we even found a little patch of left over snow at one of our water crossings.
 And this hawk was really cool to see. I looked him up and think it's a red tail, but I never really got a good look at his tail, so don't know for sure. I just know, it was fun to see him.
 So the first part of the trail, is wide, flat, easy. You walk along the creek, pass folks on horseback and see pretty views.
 More happy faces. Me, Jet and Scooter. Right before Jet offered to help me go swimming.
 Cindy, Jet and Scooter.
 Jet took good care of Scooter. He even gave him a ride in his back pack later, when he thought he was tired.
 So that was about the first third of the trail. Then comes the middle third. It looks well marked here. But you can see, that the trail suddenly goes from a wide, kind of road, to a narrow path. And it is pretty rocky. In parts, you were just walking on all kinds of loose volcanic rocks. Big ones. Jet called it an ankle breaker. It was still a pretty area. And you come to two different springs. Which is a good thing, because they became significant markers for us.
 Jet hiked faster than us. I am always bringing up the rear. Here is Jet up on the hill ahead of us.
 So while Jet gets ahead and out of sight, Cindy and I miss a turn and go up a ravine instead of the trail. The going gets pretty rough and we probably go about 15 minutes out of our way. We figure out that we somehow missed the trail and back track. We find our way and Jet waiting for us a ways down the trail. We are probably close to half way now and looking for the second spring. We find it and it is almost completly covered with a nice layer of ice.
 We are so happy to find this point of the trail and so focused on the spring, that somehow all three of us lose the trail again. It was a more significant wandering this time. We get up on the hill, Scooter gets in some cholla. I slip and fall. Jet gets banged up some. It gets a little worrisome. We can't seem to find the trail. It's getting late in the afternoon, we are only about half way, it's remote and we are lost. We figure out that we need to back track to the spring, because we know that is still on the trail. It was a little hard to see the spring, but we find it and about 10 feet back up the way we came, found where the trail branched off. We were so focused on the spring that we missed it. Lots of sighs of relief to be back on the trail. But this is where it really got rocky and was slow going. Big rocks. We kept putting one foot in front of the other and eventually found the fork in the trail that would get us back to civilization. It was a relief to know we weren't going to get lost again. The theme from Gilligan's Island kept running through my head, about how they set off for a "three hour tour". We were definately going to be out for four hours. It was getting dusky, but I knew we were going to make it back before dark. And it had been a lovely afternoon after all.
Someone had made this amazing pile of rocks on the trail.
And it was back to being a road again. I don't think Jet ever wants to go back, but I think it was a learning curve for us and I would try it again. It's a pretty area....and alls well that ends well. I am sore from my fall, scratches and all. But a hot bath solves a lot of problems!

1 comment:

Dana said...

You always find the best adventures. This sounds like it was fun in the end!