It’s a brisk, chilly wilderness morning at Chiricahua. The nice kind of chilly. The refreshing kind, that makes a cup of coffee taste great.
And as I sip my joe, I revel in all the many wonders we have seen on this trip so far: temps colder than anything you can imagine; giant cliffs painted pink and purple by the waning sun; magical underground palaces; homes high on cliffs; an army of rock warriors… Not to mention vast, vast, vast spreads of snow, prairie, desert and mountain ranges.
Between El Malpais and here, we’ve crossed the Continental Divide eight or nine times! By the time we get back, we would have been through three time zones and seven states, crossed the Pecos and Gila, waded in the Rio Grande, gone over the Colorado mountain ranges, forests, grasslands, more desert. And to think, all of this belonged to the native tribes until it was taken away, chopped up, gated, fenced, and all too often destroyed.
Big Dog’s back from chatting with the Oregon Airstream Couple and is ready to get going on the day’s hike.
There are several trails, some of them looping, around Echo Canyon and Massai Point. You can also just go to the Visitor Center, get on a shuttle to Massai Point and hike back down, one way.
Our hike takes us down through the “Grottoes” into a canyon, back up again, through “Heart of Rocks” where the famous formations are gathered, up to Inspiration Point for an overlook, back down into a rocky canyon, across dry creeks, and back up. It’s a long, all-day hike and tough on the knees and back, but we’ve got water, snacks, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches… And we are right in the midst of a magical world.