Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Home in the Pines

June 10-15 - The last three years, we've managed to be out of the Valley of the Sun for some or all of the summer. This year we've stayed closer to home, but it hasn't taken me long to remember why I prefer to be somewhere else during the summer.

With the theory that elevation makes for cooler weather, we headed to the Mogollon Rim. I knew that all the areas around Woods Canyon Lake would be crazy busy and besides that, they now charge for boondocking along that section of the rim, so we kept going.

Thanks to Campendium, we knew that there were some spots near Forest Road 139 that looked like they be positioned nicely for some geocaching and general wandering around. There was no review, but Brian had posted pictures when they were in the area a couple months ago.

Campendium's marker is at the intersection of Forest Road 139 and the unmarked Grover Spring Canyon road. The first spot on the unmarked road (about .1 mile from the intersection) was taken and the fellow there said I was the first traffic he'd seen in a week - that's good! We settled in to the second spot, about 1/4 mile from the intersection. It took some shuffling to get turned around and get the trailer situated for the solar panel. We're in the shade in the morning,

but the panel is nicely lit from mid morning to later afternoon in spite of the pine trees around us.

The Grover Spring Canyon road (which doesn't show on the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest Visitors map) crosses the Grover Spring wash immediately south of our spot. There are at least two more spots south of the wash crossing if you have enough clearance to deal with the edge of the wash. That road becomes a very rough, shoulda been 4wd road within .3 miles. I survived it, without the trailer, but only because our Tacoma has a locking differential.

In addition to the spots along Grover Spring Canyon road, there is one easy to access spot on FR139 just south of Highway 260 that is out of sight of the highway but likely subject to some road noise. Most of it is sloped but the corners flatten out considerably.

We have 3 bars of Verizon 3G, 2 to 3 bars of AT&T Edge, and 3 bars of Verizon 4G with the Sleek amplifier and antenna deployed.

It's too bad all our winter visitor friends miss out on the beauty of Arizona high country! This spot at about 6600' elevation makes for wonderful 80 degree plus/minus days and 50 degree nights. Can't ask for more!

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