Camping in the Snowies

Camping in the Snowies

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Safford AZ fiddle contest

Safford AZ is four hours south and east of Surprise. We could have gotten on Grand Avenue ( AZ highway 60) and stayed on it all the way to Safford but that would have taken us right through downtown Phoenix. Dave decided to go east to the 101 loop and south to I-10 and take the I-17 truck bypass back to I-10 and onto Hwy. 60 from there. The truck bypass misses the downtown tunnel and Sky Harbor traffic.  After the city driving, the rest was pretty easy and scenic, too. Eastward and upward by the Superstition Mountains on the left of the highway.  Boyce Thompson Arboretum S.P. Near Superior, AZ is on the right side of the highway and is a place we want to visit. The Arboretum/State Park is named for mining engineer and financier, William Boyce Thompson and is run by the state park, the arboretum board and the University of Arizona.
We were on a scenic highway climbing through narrow canyons of the Pinal Range; through the mining towns Miami, Claypool and Globe.

                                        Queen Creek Tunnel

Several mines appeared along the route with mine tailings and evidence of reclamation with vegetation being planted on the steep side hills. Curiously, someone was feeding a small herd of cattle on one of these steep hills.
            Up ahead on the right and about in the middle of the photo; a pen of cattle.

    Wasn't there an old joke about breeding mountain cattle with legs shorter on one side?

 We dropped into the Gila River drainage through the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation and stopped at the casino to stretch our legs. Barbara and Dick Garrett from Florence Junction and Weiser ID were doing the same. We drove the rest of the way with them. We turned south at Stafford to the Graham County Fairgrounds and find our musician friends already in place. We have electricity. Life is good.

                     Barbara Garrett with father and son, the Carlisles.

                       Katie Bonn, Denny Carlson, Dave and Rich(banjo)

The Kennedy family bus. John Kennedy made sausage gravy for the free biscuits and gravy breakfasts Saturday and Sunday.

The view of the sun hitting the top of 10,000+ foot Mt. Graham out our trailer door Saturday morning.
Dave contested in the Senior division and played twin fiddle with Katie Bonn. He also played guitar back up for some contestants. This is a big contest with lots of good fiddlers in Dave's category. He got a 6th place and a 4th place. Arizona native and high school senior, Ben Shu, won the "Show Your Stuff" $1000 prize this year. 

Out in the parking lot were cars and trucks from several states.

                                                        Tom Bonn's truck

                                    Safford is about 40 miles from New Mexico

I did a little birding around the fairgrounds and saw Blue Winged Teal and a Say's Phoebe plus some other more common birds.
Back home in Surprise with Bambi Luci snug in her RV spot, Dave and I are ready to stay put for a couple of weeks. 

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