Sunday, August 16, 2009

Forest Road 1705

I went up near Bushnell tanks again. As you go north on the Beeline Highway(87), you can see the outside temperature slowly dropping. Just south of Bushnell tanks, the north and southbound sides of 87 change places and take slightly different routes. As you head north, you will see the southbound traffic to your right. It's a little strange the first time you see it. A short distance after they switch back to the normal sides, the road crests at a pass. That's where the temperature really drops. It's very noticeable if you are on a motorcycle.

It was about 105 as I drove out of the valley yesterday afternoon. I was headed for a road I had seen on Google Earth a couple of days ago. The road intersects 87 just north of that crest. I had never noticed it before, maybe because I was always looking up ahead at the Bushnell tanks exit by then. It looked like it might take me close to Black Mesa, and Black Mesa might be something cool to hike to the top of. Anyway, when I turned off of 87, the temperature was only 94.

The road (Forest Road 1705) was in good condition, but it looked like it wasn't used much. There had only been a couple of vehicles out there since the last rain, which was probably a week ago. I don't think the official road goes by Black Mesa. I wound up parking by a mountain north of Black Mesa and wandering around there for a while.

There was a roadrunner in the middle of the road. It was hiding in the grass by the time I got the camera out, though.

Not many clouds around.

Black Mesa

Where I went hiking.

I didn't feel energetic enough to go all the way to the top of the mountain I was climbing. I only saw one unusual thing out there. On the way downhill, I saw what looked like small sinkholes. There was no dirt piled around them, as if they were animal holes that had collapsed, or holes dug by people. They made me wonder if there was a cave under there, and the dirt was falling through a hole into the cave. I can't think of anything else yet that could have caused those holes.

A sinkhole?

A larger sinkhole.

Click below to see all of the pictures.


1 comment:

julia said...

Yikes! Maybe an abandoned mine is causing the sinkholes. You should get me to hike there next time we're in Phoenix. If anyone would fall into an abandoned mine, it would be me. Then we would know.