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Chiricahua Mountains

I sit here in the place of those before me, riding the same trails, gazing on the same mountains. Washing my face in the same spring which runs through the twisted red bark of Manzanitas and balanced rocks.

In the Chiricahuas and Dos Cabezos of Arizona the peaks may be the heart, but the rolling hills and flowing water of the pass are the artery - a place of survival and nurture.

We ride along boulder strewn trails and fresh water creeks. Through cactus, oaks and pines down into a running stream where the Apaches and soldiers took shelter.

The shadow of a buzzard crosses the trail ahead and I glance up searching for his shape, black wings outstretched against clear blue sky.

At camp, cattle graze nearby and the sun throws color over the Whitlock and Peloncillo Mountains. The puppy sits in my lap as the day retires, throwing color to the east.

The horses chew their hay and a nighthawk cries in the distance. The dog barks at something unseen. Something unheard and little known.


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