Monday, November 30, 2009


It was the pitter patter on the roof that roused me out of sound sleep this morning followed by a few flashes of light & the low roll of thunder. Rain!! Not unexpected because the spectacular cloud formations of the past couple of days signaled another weather change moving through the area. It has been these clouds that have been making for some very beautiful sunrises & sunsets, not to mention the awesome cloud formations during the day.

Where we live in Bayfield Ontario the sky is seldom visible to us because of the heavy pine tree cover in our area so the open desert skies of Arizona are a huge attraction. Here in the Sulphur Springs valley we are surrounded by mountains on all horizons. On our walk this morning skies were dark & foreboding to the northwest over near Tombstone. We could here thunder rumbling somewhere between the Mule & Dragoon Mountains some 40 miles or more away. We were in sunshine down on the valley floor as another storm came thundering across the Swiss Helm mountains to our east. South of us about 20 miles near Douglas the skies were so black even Castle Dome mountain was hardly visible. Great sheets of rain could be seen to the north, while Bisbee, hidden away in the Mule mountains, huddled under a heavy cover of clouds squatting on the mountain tops. All this was visible in a complete 360 degree panoramic view all around us as we walked in early morning desert sunshine.

This is a valley of legends where we are. Cochise & Geronimo fought battles in nearby canyon passes. Indian raids into Mexico came through here. Pancho Villa & his men rode these ranges. Cattle rustling was carried on by men like the McLaury brothers who had a ranch near here & later died in a shoot out over in Tombstone with the Erp brothers & Doc Holiday. This is a valley of prospectors, miners, & ghost towns. This is a valley of ghosts. This is a valley of restless spirits. And, this is a valley where we walk in the footsteps of history each day.

The American southwest is a land of ever changing beauty & enchantment & we feel very much at home here. There is a magic in the mountains that deepens the mysteries of the desert valleys below. When the clouds sit on the mountain tops & the lumbering cloud shadows slowly make their way through the canyons & valleys it gives one a sense of awe to be in this land of magic shadows. We will keep returning here to the southwest for it's fiery sunrises & sunsets as long as we can. Until the desert winds erase our tracks, until the brooding mountains wrap themselves around us no longer. Until the magic shadows drift through our memories no more.

To-day we visited with Jeanie & Ray for awhile & then headed down to Douglas for some groceries. A very special & dedicated lady living & working in the area had invited us for supper & I will be blogging about that shortly & adding photos of our visit.  It was late when we arrived back at the rig & with another camera full of photos I decided to work on that little project Monday morning. I think we might be in for some rain to-night & to-morrow so that would work out perfectly for me.

It’s after 10 o’clock & Live Writer has just failed me again!! I had thought the problem before was with the web albums but I do not have any web albums in to-night’s post. Checked the connection & it was fine so now I have to start over by moving all this to Blogger's Dashboard……..:((

GROANER'S CORNER:)) . A man walks into a bar with a slab of asphalt under his arm and says: "A beer please, and one for the road."

The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right now....AL.

MY SMUG MUG (I am finally working on updating this site)


  1. As I looked at your superb photos and read your descriptive comments about the "Valley of Legends"...I thought... WOW..what a fantastic history lesson! Thanks Al, for making all those stories I read about Geronimo, etc.,(way back when!) come ALIVE!

  2. Al, you are a poet of the old west, a wonderful story teller with vivid word pictures, and just as vivid photos. Since we spend a lot of time in our own part of SE Arizona, I can attest to the accuracy of your descriptions.

  3. Another great story, Al! And, those pictures are spectacular - good job!

  4. You take wonderful Photos of the valley and the words you put with them are very moving and enjoyable.
    I wish everyone I have told about your blog would take the time to read it. They would be hooked on your tales.

  5. Al! your Valley Of Legends post along with the photos were just great.I feel you have missed your calling...... keep up the good work.

  6. Excellent post, and I can relate to living in an area with trees blocking out the night sky, as well as living in an area where you can reach up and touch the Milky Way.

  7. Well, I can only chime in along with the other readers and say...fantastic. Your photography is astounding and I always look forward to seeing which desert scenes you've captured. Thanks so much for taking the time and effort to make your blog so GREAT.

  8. WOW! Ditto, ditto on all the above. There's something very empowering yet humbling about walking on such historic ground. Your commentary made us feel like we were walking there with you.

  9. love the pictures they are amazing