Narraguinnep Fort

San Juan National Forest (map link) I missed Narraguinnep Fort because I had some thought that there would be a turnout along the road past the intersection, but the intersection is the optimal place to stop. A road continues to the fort if you want to deal with the gate and can handle sufficiently rough road. It really isn't far to the walk instead. I pulled over where the road was wide and I was sure I could get out again and made my way down. At this intersection of improved gravel roads, the two dirt tracks lead off to the fort. As above, there were lots of flowers. I immediately found many, some of which I hadn't seen yet in the day's walks. It's a different elevation and a different environment. A short penstemon makes small spots of blue. Irises grow enthusiastically where it is wet, particularly by the stream. A closer look at the irises, which are actually quite small, only a few inches across. Now there is only a sign marking the fort. Th

Benchmark Lookout

San Juan National Forest (map link) As with most manned fire lookouts these days, there is a road all the way to the bottom of Benchmark Lookout. Right about the edge of the 7.5' quad, that road turns from improved to unimproved and that is where I parked. I could probably have carefully driven the little Scion over the rocks that suddenly started popping out of the road, but I was looking for a little walk. I pulled out of the route of travel and started what became quite a wildflower walk. Well, a stroll really. It is a very gentle generally upward slope to the lookout. On the left, the remnants of a turn around leave plenty of room for a three point turn. The lookout is just visible in the center in the distance. A small group of mules ear. Tall blue flax was waving in the wind. The larkspur all along the road. Mules ear and larkspur were the most abundant of the flowers, but numerous others were scattered along the way.

Bonanza Bill and Tige Rim

Apache National Forest (map link) I wanted to hike the Tige Rim and was told the road should be good enough if you pick your rocks carefully. Turns out, there were two spots that I was a little worried I only got past because I was going downhill. One rolling solid rock piece of road with a very narrow, large rock covered bypass was bad enough that it stuck in the back of my mind throughout the hike as I worried about how I would safely get up it. Everything was soft sand shortly before I got to the parking just over the state line in Arizona, but the actual parking area was good enough. My first order of business was the distraction of a state line marker, or so I thought, just south of the road. Black Mesa Forest Reserve boundary post no. 48 from 1902. Cool, a forest reserve post. I realized it wasn't marked "MP" and a number like a few to the south. Then again, those are 41 and 42 and then just about the right amount of space to fill in 43-47 in between. The

Dangerous Park Trail to Black Bull Peak

Apache National Forest (map link) How, I ask you, how could I pass up a trail to Dangerous Park? I found it passing by Black Bull Peak and decided that would be a reasonable goal to propel me to walk along Dangerous Park Trail beside Dangerous Park Canyon through the actual Dangerous Park. Although what exactly was Dangerous Park, I wasn't sure, but suspected it was either where there was a coral or the flat bit before that. My vote is the flat bit south of the coral. The Dangerous Park Trailhead is at the far end of Pueblo Park Campground next to a different coral. So I passed through the gate, then around some fencing through the coral even though there was a second gate on offer. It was a closed ranch gate with barbed wire on the holding loop and I didn't feel like dealing with it. Then it was just the same as the interpretive trail for about 200 feet where it forks and this time I went right. It climbs to gain some views over the first mile. Surrounded by tree

Pueblo Park Interpretive Trail

Apache National Forest (map link) I decided to start out small and since I was camping right next to the trailhead, it was easy to find the interpretive trail in Pueblo Park Campground. (Maybe soon to be a fee campground, but free for now.) The box held a single well used, one time repaired, brochure with a long note about how it is the very last one, so do not, under any circumstances, keep it. (The brochure is titled: Trail to the Past... Prehistoric and Historic Settlement in the Pueblo Creek Area. It is a Gila National Forest publication since they are in administrative control of this part of Apache.) It said just follow the mounded cairns and stop at the numbered signs, but I found the map on the second page necessary in a few spots. I even started off following the faint track of an old road before noting and calibrating to the cairns going up a path to the left. Right, those big mounded rock piles of cairns. From there, I was set through the first couple stops. A notic

Flying W Mountain

Las Cruces District BLM (map link) I was free! Well, almost. The last hammer blow that the builder felt she couldn't quite do herself had fallen. It had been a little longer than the one, maybe two months expected and I seemed to have been kept quite busy through it all, also not expected. Inspectors came and signed off on it, but I still had a couple days to keep a small farm going while the usual farmer was gone. That is just keeping the ducks, chickens, turkeys, peacocks, cockatiels, parakeets, and guineas all got fed and chicken eggs gathered and a few things watered. The dogs have automatic feeders. This actually does give me plenty of time to do other things. It had gotten way too hot in that extra month, unfortunately. Still, I needed something for May, didn't I? And there lurks Big Hatchet, still to be climbed. Big Hatchet will continue to lurk for me. Maybe I can get there, maybe I can't. "You've got a short wheel base, that will help." The st

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