I was dragged through a variety of furniture stores whose names I do not recall on Monday. Today, "the ladies" had the car so I asked to be dropped off in the wilderness, rather than be frog marched through more aisles. So I found my self at the foot of Bighorn Mountain. I needed to do some more exploratory effort before making a push to the summit. It is all off trail and very slow going as I first scan the surface for a rattler and then for the best way forward.
Wow. Check out this saguaro cactus. If I had to guess, I'd put the age at 250 years. It is said 80 years passes before an arm begins to emerge so.....
I have to advance through two washes before arriving at what I think is a drainage that will take me to a saddle for the final hike up to the summit. I have no idea how far it is but for today, it is to go farther than I have gone before.
I reach the base of this rock outcropping and go around it and then....
...how about that!!! I find a game trail and the going is a bit easier. I begin to think what animals I would like not to meet on their highway and then decide to think of the much smaller list of those I would like to meet.....deer, maybe a bighorn sheep...that's about it. Most, if not all of you, think I am a weenie for my concerns about rattlers, mountain lions, bears, javelinas, jaguars, gila monsters, Africanized killer bees, bobcats and scorpions. I know veteran hikers who do not go off trail until November thru February and refuse otherwise. The only thing on that list they don't have too worry about too much during that "cold" season are rattlesnakes and maybe the bee swarms.
I ran into an impregnable wall of dollar cactus and decide that is enough for today. Looking in the direction from which I had come, the views are terrific, as always. I get the car tomorrow and have an epic hike. I have to be on the trail at 6:00am, a half hour prior to sunrise. So early but I am very frustrated that I have not already achieved an epic journey