KOFA National Wildlife Refuge
On Saturday, January 6th, I leave Tucson bound for Kofa NWR. The distance is more than I like to travel in one day, so I stop for the night at Harrah’s AK-Chin Casino near Maricopa, which is just over 100 miles away. Many of the casinos in the west permit RVs to park overnight.
Sunday morning I continue west on I-8. In Yuma, I make a quick stop for groceries and fuel at Fry’s. From there it is about 50 miles to the campsite. Last January, I attended an RVForum.net mini-rally at Kofa. We all had a great time and loved the camping there. I was glad when a rally was planned for this January.
There were a few people back from last year as well as several new attendees. It is very informal, but everyone usually gathered around late afternoon. Then after dinner for a campfire. The weather was nice – a little cool at night but not bad.
The mountains behind us would turn red in the setting sun.
And some evenings the sky would be pink and blue.
One morning, I hiked from camp across the desert, heading north along the west side of the mountains.
When sunlight hits a barrel cactus its red spines seem to glow. I love seeing them.
With all the rain there are some plants in bloom.
People seem to have a penchant for building cairns. I came across this one is at the top of one of the hills.
Each day we would see C-17s flying around the area at low altitude. Sometimes parachutists would drop from them.
North Star Mine
Another day I drove east thru the refuge to North Star Mine. It’s a nice drive across a basin surrounded by jagged mountains. The North Star Mine is located about 2 miles north of the King of Arizona Mine, from which the area gets its name.
The mine is up on a hillside at the end of Road 65. I parked and walked the last half mile. It operated from 1907 to 1911, producing primarily gold, as well as some silver.
It was great to be back at Kofa again. This is one of my favorite places to camp. The dark skies are superb for stargazing. Most nights were clear and the Milky Way was visible. It was nice to see the people who returned from last year as well as meet some new folks.
One night there was a spectacular sunset, but I was lazy and didn’t get my camera out. So I just have these photos of the last night’s sunset. 🙂