Second Time Around in Arizona.
Sorry to disappoint, but this post has nothing to do with Public Enemy, just can’t get the song out of my head while I write this.
If you are keeping track, this is our second time in Arizona. Our first trip was noteworthy for a myriad of reasons, but Tuscon is a slice of Arizona I feel should be dealt with separately.
Yes, these are our same friends from the wedding in the Sedona trip. They moved over to Tuscon so we get to snowbird for a week each February. This is the Chicago dream. I do not like the heat of the desert, but come February, I am ready to flee a Midwest winter. We would take a week and go down to hang with our peeps.
The Sonoran Desert seems to have a unique Flora and Fauna even for the surrounding states. Here is what I mean, near Tuscon is the vital habitat for the only population of jaguars living within the United States. Didn’t know that?
The Sonoran Desert is the only place in the world where the famous saguaro cactus thrives, which is sweet and reminds me of cartoons I grew up on as a child.
Our friends lived in the Catalina Foothills because they were not FIRE and used all of their money for housing. Their backyards had amazing views like this;
I was also super impressed with the landscaping. This is what I mean. I break my back all year long trying to tame, encourage, and brutally police a green weed to do what I want it to do. Then I rake up a metric shit ton of leaves, wait for the winter to be over and repeat.
That is for suckers. In Tuscon, you set it and forget it. It takes ZERO MAINTENANCE to have a yard that looks like this all the time;
Now granted, your children can not play in the yard because it hurts and it is full of poisonous monsters, but hey, it’s all about compromise right?
Here were some of our Adventures;
Kartchner Caves. Thinking dark and cool? Wrong, this is a very much so a ‘living cave’ that is hot and humid. I didn’t know caves could do this. The cave has an average temperature of 70° Fahrenheit (21° Celsius) and 99 percent humidity year-round.
The entrance to the cave was not found until 1974. The entrance was only a couple of feet wide. When the 2 friends wiggled down it to find out where the warm air was coming from, it ended up having 2.5 miles of cave.
The ‘Throne Room’ features one of the largest ‘soda straw’ stalactite. It even has a name; Kubla Khan. Pretty cool, even if it was muggy.
I wish I had a better picture of what I am about to explain. Standing on the hill where you nowadays enter this cave is a massive valley where you can see for miles.
In the same shot is, 1. Mexico, 2. Tombstone, where the famous shootout at the OK coral happened in 1881, 3. This ‘hot cave’, and 4. The mountain stronghold of the Apaches under Geronimo.
He is right up there, but it was very difficult to get him out 🙂
I went back to Arizona in 2019 for another shot at appreciating the Grand Canyon, this time with kids (post coming soon).
Back to the Travel Log.