Saturday, September 6, 2008

Labor Day Spent in the Chiricahuas










This past Labor Day weekend, we went
to our cabin in the Chiricahuas. Our family, along with two families who have been very close friends for many years, went together to buy the cabin in 1960. I was in 6th grade that year. The cabin is in South Fork of Cave Creek Canyon which is on the eastern slope of the Chircahua Mountains. It is about 60 miles from Douglas. In order to get there, you must go into New Mexico and then back into Arizona. It takes about an hour to get there from Douglas.

After we got the cabin, we went up almost every Sunday after church and spent the day. So many of my wonderful memories have to do with this cabin. It is in what I consider probably the most beautiful place on earth. There is only one other cabin in South Fork and a picnic area about a mile up. You can't get television, radio, or telephone access there so you are truly isolated from the world.

It is truly a cabin. We have no running water. You have to go down to the spring in the creek to get water. We have a kitchen with a sink and a stove and you have to boil the water on the stove to get water to do the dishes and to wash up. There is an outhouse and a small shed for a generator to make electricity.

I have been to some wonderful cabins of friends over the years. They are called cabins, but they really are homes in the forests and are beautiful places to visit. Our cabin is truly a cabin in the woods.

There is a creek that runs behind it that is absolutely awesome! The water is so clear and very cold. As a child, I remember spending hours in the creek or up the mountain exploring caves or anything else we could find.

During the years that we spent the summers in Douglas when my kids were young, we spent a lot of time at the cabin. They have always loved going there. And now we are able to share this experience with Cameron.

We have a guest book that is amazing. One of my favorite entries in it is from my 13th birthday party that was held there in January. I was able to invite friends and we spent the night. It was freezing, but we had a wonderful time. It is so fun to look back and see what people have written over the years. I think Judy was in about second grade then and to see her handwriting as a second grader is so fun.

Seeing my kids entries when they were little and what they wrote and how they wrote it is something so special. What a legacy it has been.

This past weekend, the weather could not have been better. It was cool and a bit overcast. We got some rain while we were there. The ground was quite wet from all of the rain that they have gotten over the past few months. The creek was quite full and was absolutely beautiful.

There is a natural swimming hole about a mile from the picnic area. The road stops at the picnic area and you have to walk from then on. We call the swimming hole "The Bathtub" and I have so many wonderful memories of going there over the years. We decided to go there on Sunday. In order to get to "The Bathtub," you have to walk across the creek three times. The rain that southeastern Arizona has gotten during this season has been a lot. The amount of water has actually changed the creek in a couple of spots and wiped out the trail. If we hadn't been familiar with the area, I think we may have had a hard time finding the trail. It was amazing what nature can do!!

When we got to "The Bathtub" it was full of water and so beautiful. Everyone decided to go in (not me--the water is freezing.) When you jump into the water, it almost takes your breath away. Everyone had such fun. Cameron was hesitant, but decided to try jumping in. There is a waterfall that you sit on and it pushes you into the water. He did it a couple of times.

I forget how relaxing it is to spend time there. There is nothing to worry about and what goes on in the world will wait until you get back to read the newspaper or listen to the news. In our fast paced world, that is so refreshing.

I am hoping that we can get back soon as I truly believe that this is my very favorite spot on earth. If you have never been to the Chiricahuas, you are missing seeing some of the most beautiful scenery in Arizona, the U. S., and probably the world. People come from all over the globe to visit. It is well worth the trip. I just wish it was closer to us!! It was a great weekend spent enjoying the beauty of nature!!

3 remarks:

velvet brick said...

Cameron is brave!! What a treasure this cabin is for your family ...and to look back at all of the entries in the journal! Sheila, I loved how you talked about being away from it all...relaxing and taking in the gifts of nature. I feel the same way about Deer Springs. Nothing beats getting away from it all. I'm glad you were able to sneak down there for a few days! Tell Cameron he's brave... I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have gone into the water either... I like my pool water at 90 degrees!

Anonymous said...

Your right! The Chiricahuas are unique and georgeous. I have many fond memories of these mountains. Best we not tell anybody they are in Southeast Arizona. That way,we can preserve them for our own selfish enjoyment.
Tom S.

Susie of Arabia said...

What wonderful memories this post triggered for me. The ice cold water flowing over the smooth colorful rocks. Juniper smoke from the campfires. The smell of hot dogs roasting and baked beans in an open can cooking on the grill. Marshmallows on a stick, crispy on the outside and that gooey melted sweetness on the inside. Ah, the Chiricahuas! Thanks, Cheela.