January 24, 2015, Bumble Bee, AZ- I found, late this morning, that I had previously reached the trail head of Antelope Springs- Hidden Treasure segment of the Black Canyon National Recreation Trail, which I am determined to complete, in segments, during this calendar year. Gleefully, I headed out from the large water tank that marks Antelope Springs.
The first mile, or so, of the trail is easy, flat and distinguished only by what is probably the northwesternmost sahuaro in Arizona. All was quiet, too, which gave me the solitude I craved this noon, after a week of earnest service to a homeless veteran and a class of Special Needs students.
While the trail stayed sanguine, the rocks were the star attractions. Smooth quartz, mostly milky white, was dispersed along the way- with a couple fields of shattered shards. Other pieces were marbled with granite, or infused with iron.
Sahuaro are a bit more numerous in this area, and face the ravages of being approached by the occasional errant horse, or human. There were plenty of both along the trail today. It was a gorgeous day, and about two dozen horses, with both Western and English riders, happened along. I picked up a shoe that one of the animals had lost, and the group later gave it to me as a souvenir. About eight bicyclists also enjoyed the trail.
Off to the southeast, and up on a steep hill, I could see Sunset Point, the major highway rest area, on I-17, between Phoenix and the turnoff to Prescott.
Heading back to the water tank, I spotted twoformations, in different light.
So it went, that I completed not one, but two, segments of this well-worn trail. Next segment will take me from Bumble Bee to Black Canyon City, sometime in late February.