Thursday, January 13, 2011

The San Pedro River

We had to use our snow brush for something.

Down the San Pedro River bed we hiked in hopes of finding a Javelina or two, remnants of a silver mine or some adobe ruins. Unfortunately for Martha, she managed to find a bit of mud as slick as a cow patty. Down she went; though nothing was hurt but her dry jeans and pride. Once her hands were washed in the San Pedro only her derrière needed some time to dry out. Was this pay back for her gloating over the warm Arizona sun while folks back home dug themselves out from 30 inches of snowfall?

We did find the adobe ruins, which were on the west river bank. Too bad we were on the east side facing a 15 foot river bank as sheer as a cliff, not to mention the river hidden just below. We would have liked to explore further but scaling this incline was impossible and we weren't up to hiking a half mile south and then again north to get back here, just 100 feet further west. There is always next time.

Look very closely at this 30" dia. tree. The rigid vertical and diagonal posts are railroad tracks (rails) embedded in the ground by the Railroad Company to prevent riverbank erosion. Over a very long period of time this tree has grown over the rails as if to engulf and conceal it. I have seen similar tree growth covering barbed wire, metal signs and hammock hooks, but never anything as pronounced and extenuated as this. Given enough time, could this tree actually extend itself, much like a vine, enough to engulf all the rails?


  1. Was wondering where along the San Pedro river you were hiking. The ghost towns of Millville & Charleston are accessible with a little bit of hiking & searching. Not sure if that's where you were or not. The Charleston road runs from Tombstone to Sierra Vista & crosses the San Pedro river. A few hundred yards on the east side of the river is the parking lot for a hike to what's left of Millville. Across the San Pedro river from Millville is the ruins of Charleston. It is completely hidden in the trees & not easy to find. We had to tippy toe across the river. If you type Millbank or Charleston into the search bar on our blog you will find my post on, 'the day we found Charleston.' How long are you guys in the area for? Nice header photo:))

  2. That's exactly where we were, though we never found the trailhead until we got back. We parked by the bridge and met an old fellow who had been coming there for years. He said there was no trail and he had always just hiked the river bed. That's what we did but returned to the parking area via the RR bed; then we saw the trail and restrooms. I checked out your blog when you were there this time last year. Kelly's feet must have been cold!

    We are here until mid March or so, though we remain flexible. We're headed to Willcox today.