Portal Rodeo Hiking Club

Lunch on Fly Peak
Lunch on Fly Peak

Thursday morning the Portal Rodeo Hiking club met just as it has for several decades. The proposed hike was up on the Crest Trail high above our meeting place at the Silver Peak Trailhead. At 8:00 AM Arizona time the prospects looked wet. The recent cold wet weather meant the Crest Trail on the Chiricahuas might be full of snow or wet and cold. The group pondered some lower hikes considering. I was hoping to go high regardless but kept my mouth shut since I was just passing through. I figured the regulars should decide where they wanted to hike. Luckily, Al said let’s go up. It could be great up there. I and a couple others said, “Yes!” and the momentum shifted to taking our chances up high. We piled back into cars and headed up the mountain road.

I was in the lead vehicle with Rolf and Carol and we saw a flock of turkeys cross the road as we neared Rustler Park. I love seeing a big band of turkeys running through the trees. They are the dinosaurs of today. Up top all was well. The sun was shining and the clouds below added drama to the landscape. The warming air brought out all the critters looking for a spot of sun. We saw spiny and bunchgrass lizards, a tarantula, and a twin spotted rattlesnake. It’s breeding season for the spiny lizards so they were showing off their finest push-ups. Also seen were five Border Patrol Agents on foot looking for a rumored someone.

Our group bagged Fly Peak and had lunch as the wind shifted and socked us in. We’d gotten all the blue skies we were going to get that day. You can see the wall of fog behind us in the photo above. Moments later we were in the mists. It was time to head down. On a personal note this was a big day. My new medicine allowed me to hike 7 miles above 9,000′. I struggled a bit going up hill but I made it. Flats and downhill were easy. I was wearing my brand new fit bit and it was very pleased with my efforts.

Fog below and blue skies above
Fog below and blue skies above
Bunch grass lizard. Just a new baby.
Bunch grass lizard. Just a new baby.
Tarantula
Tarantula
Two males displayed while this female discretely checked them out.
Two males displayed while this female discretely checked them out.
Here's a male trying to impress the female. He's got to do his push-ups just right or she'll ignore him.
Here’s a male trying to impress the female. He’s got to do his push-ups just right or she’ll ignore him.
Trail maintenance
Trail maintenance
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3 thoughts on “Portal Rodeo Hiking Club”

  1. I signed up for the hiking club awhile back, at least I think I did. I can read all your trip reports but the problem is I don’t get any emails announcing upcoming hikes. I know of no other way to contact the club other than this comment space.

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