Friday 20 February – Thought I’d be up early enough at 7am to see the cranes departing but was 30 minutes too late. It was a cold morning – probably the coldest we have had so far and even had to resort to having our furnace on. We decided to go on a tiki tour today – first to Bisbee which is an old mining town which has an historic old town full of art shops, a big second hand shop and many cafes and pubs. It was bit like a mini Wellington with all the houses perched up hillsides. Before we got there however, we came a cross a street all on its own which was set out like an old time street of garages, workshops etc. Outside three of the buildings were old petrol pumps, and although most of the buildings they were still made up to look like original. One was still functioning as a parts and restoration business.
There were several old cars parked on both sides of the street as well as an original greyhound bus. One shop front even had two beautifully restored old Indian Motorcycles.
Entering into Bisbee we passed several huge abandoned open cast copper mining pits – quite an eyesore and not a very enticing backdrop to the town. We spent a while wandering around Old Bisbee and had lunch at a very alternative sort of cafe – Bob had to contend with Almond milk in his coffee and my wild vegetable soup was interesting to say the least. Time caught up with us a bit so we decided that we would just do a small loop down to Douglas which is right on the Mexican border and back to the Whitewater Draw camp for another night.
Saturday 21 Feb – Dragged myself out of bed at 6.30am and this time caught the cranes on their departure. This is a sunrise photo folks just to prove I was up!!
If I thought yesterday was cold , it must have been very nearly freezing this morning. My earlier estimation of around 3-4 thousand was way too low – there were at least ten times that many. What a sight they were – taking off in groups of up to 100 at a time – there was just wave after wave of them filling the sky and as they got further away it was like a line of wispy clouds. It took a good 30 minutes for the majority of them to fly away and then there were just a few stragglers milling about.
Decided to just motor a short distance and we are currently at Cochise Stronghold (yes that is the Red Indian Cochise). Although it was only a short distance the road was horribly rough and the last two miles were of a very washboard gravel road which rattled and shook every bone of the poor van’s body. Anyway it was worthwhile – the free campsite is in a perfect spot – in among the largest trees we have seen since leaving California. Had a really exciting time getting all the washing done and having a general clean out of the van. We have a backdrop of rocky cliffs (can just imagine Indians hiding out waiting to ambush the cowboys).