On the Road # 9, 2003 - Organ Pipe Cactus National Park
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Monday, March 3 to Wednesday, March 5 (Davis-Monthan AFB, Tuscon, AZ):
     The weather was better today (Monday, partly cloudy with temp in the 60s.  We sat outside for awhile but then the clouds moved in and the wind was cold.  Joe got a few minor repairs done on the M/H.
Tuesday, we sat out and read for awhile, but the wind was cold so we didn't last long.  Joe went over and checked email.  Wednesday, Sue did a load of laundry and we went to Popeye's for lunch and to Walmart and the Commissary.  We are leaving tomorrow for Organ Pipe Cactus NP.
Thursday, March 6 (Organ Pipe Cactus National Park):
     Joe did email this morning and we unhooked and moved about 150 miles to Organ Pipe Cactus NP on the Mexican border.  We traveled on Arizona 85 from Tuscon, past Kitt Peak Observatory,  to the town of Why, then turned south on 86 to Organ Pipe Cactus.  The trip was through desert with lots of cactus; Saguaro (sa-wah-ro), Prickly Pear, Cholla (choy-ya) and, near the park, Organ Pipes.  See pictures on next page.
Friday, March 7:
     We drove the eastern loop trail today, 21+ miles through the eastern side of the park and saw lots of cactus and desert scenery.  See pictures on next page.  We are in the Sonoran Desert and the brochure says there are 26 different species of cactus here and many other desert species, such as the Ocotilla (ock-o-tiah).  See picture on next page.
Saturday, March 8:
     We drove the western loop today, 51 miles through the west side of the park.  We passed the old Golden Bell Mine and Bonita Wells, an old well, corral and stock watering area and a natural spring fed lake called Quitobaquito Oasis.  The oasis was surrounded by plush plant growth and huge cottonwood trees.  The rest of the plant life on the west side was very similar to the east side, except for the presence of the Senita cactus and Elephant tree which are only found in the Senita basin, right down on the Mexican border because they can't survive freezing.  Some of the park road traveled right along the border and we could see traffic on Mexican Hwy 2 on the other side of the border and passed a truck stop and cafe just across the border fence.  We stopped at Lukeville on the border for lunch.  It consisted of an RV park, service station/cafe/general store and a border crossing station.  See pictures, below.  Tomorrow we move to Gila Bend Air Force Aux. Field, where we'll be back in contact with the rest of the world.  We have a strong cell phone signal here, but when we dial a number we get a recorded message in Spanish and get disconected so guess the tower is in Mexico.

Joe & Nancy Sue, On the Road, Gila Bend AFAF, Gila Bend, AZ