Strayhorse Campground on US 191 south of Alpine AZ
Dawn at Strayhorse Campground, March 29, 2008
Camping along US 191
In addition to the informal camping along US 191 south of Alpine, Arizona there is Strayhorse Campground in the Sitgreaves National Forest. This is a nice little primitive campground at a major trailhead on a saddle about 26 miles south of Alpine AZ, the first wide spot in the road south of Blue Vista overlook.
Mexican Gray Wolves now live here
When I visited the Living Desert Zoo & Gardens State Park in Carlsbad NM I seem to remember signage saying their magnificent Mexican gray wolves were among the few surviving members of the species and that all were in captivity. I'm delighted to find that is not the case. The US Fish & Wildlife Service has an active Mexican Wolf Recovery Program. It is so exciting to think they are being re-introduced into the wild. I wish them well.
Blue Vista overlook
Yikes! About 20 miles south of Alpine AZ US 191 comes right to the edge of the Mogollon Rim where, if you've got the guts, there's a narrow road out around the point to a small parking lot right on the edge of the rim to take in the view before dropping down off the rim. I'm sorry I didn't attempt it but I didn't see any good way to get a picture or two of the layer upon layer of hazy blue hills far far below. That's Blue Vista above the stop sign in the picture.
Gas up before leaving Alpine
I didn't and that little lapse in judgement kept me on edge all the way down to Clifton. I'm not sure how far it is but I'm going to guess 90 miles. Oh, and leave the big rig home - there's a sign posted to the effect that no trucks over 40 feet are allowed, the road is not plowed nights and weekends or during storms and the road is not patrolled.
- This is a primitive campground with no water or electric hookups at the sites and no dump station.
- Verizon cell phone and Broadband service are probably not available here - I don't remember.
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Nights I've camped here
After the dinner our hosts conducted us to the beach. Among the presents was a large supply rice for the fleet. It was put up in straw sacks or bales containing about 125 pounds each. By the pile stood a company of athletes or gymnasts chosen from the peasantry for their strength and size and trained for the service and entertainment of the court. At a signal from their leader, who was himself a giant of muscle and fat, a sort of human Jumbo, they began transporting the rice to the boats. It was more frolic than work. Some of thembore a bale on each hand above their heads, some would carry two laid crosswise on the shoulders and head, while others performed dextrous feats of tossing, catching, balancing them, or turning somersaults with them. I saw one nimble Titan fasten his talons in a sack, throw it down on the sand still keeping his hold, turn a somersault over it, throw it over him as he revolved, and come down sitting on the beach with the sack in his lap. Beat that who can. If you imagine it "as easy as preaching," try it the next time in a gymnasium. But let me advise you, first make your will.
The Logbook of the Captains Clerk, John J. Sewell, Lakeside Press, 1995 pg 256