December 2016 and i was getting a case of sharp pains in the lungs otherwise known as the pleurisy, my prescription was two cloves of garlic three times a day and a Camping trip to Southern Arizona with the 1980 Dodge Mobile Traveler camper. After the three day one thousand mile trip I was planing to camp at a Gold Prospectors Association of America claim that is south of Wickenburg Arizona by way of the Vulture Mine Rd. Taking hwy 60 west out of Wickenburg Arizona you make a left turn at the Safeway and go south on Vulture Mine Road about 30 miles passing Agillia road where Vulture Mine Road turns into an old Arizona wagon trail and heads up into the Belmont Mountain mining district. The Vulture Peak camping and trail head will be a left turn that is about 6 miles south on Vulture Mine Rd, I had no idea about the Vulture Peak camping area or hiking trail area and took note of a few campers in the parking area as I passed by on my way down to the gold mine area. The trail into the gold mine was long and rough and i took a left up a large wash that looked to be a good candidate for the left turn in my directions. The wash was somewhat soft in areas and I was keeping my speed up in order to keep from getting stuck in the sand. I parked the dodge in the middle of the wash after going about a half mile and began searching for the typical gold prospecting holes that are seen in the claim areas. After a few hours i decided to head back to the Safeway and stock up on supplies before trying to make the one mile trip down the wash to the claim with the old Dodge.
After stocking up on supplies it was getting late and i pulled into the Vulture Peak trail head area that is also a BLM camping area for a small number of campers and made camp for the night. I had equipped the old Dodge with 200 watts of solar panels and was bringing in a lot of free to air channels out of Phoenix with a 12 volt amplified digital TV antenna and a 12 volt TV but was not getting cell phone reception in the area. The next morning I took a walk down the road to the trail head and the bone spur in my right foot that i have been limping around with for the last two years seems to finally be starting to get better.
Hilleberg Jannu 2 Person alpine climbing and mountaineering tent. Packed Weight 7 lbs 1 oz $927.51
Yodo Lightweight 2 Person Camping Backpacking Tent With Carry Bag, green easy set up with a carry bag, ideal for Backpacking Scout Outdoor Camping Hiking Fishing: $29.88
Columbia Sportswear Fall River 10 Person Instant Dome Tent (Compass Blue) $349.99
The trail up to the Vulture Peak is about a 3.8 mile round trip and I decide to try some walking workouts in order to make a decision on trying the hike up the mountain. After a couple days of shorter walks I decide the foot is good enough for the 3.8 mile hike up the mountain trail. At the beginning of the trail you go down into a wash and you have to make a left up the wash looking for the path beginning the hike up the mountain.
Near the Saddle looking west
Nearing the top of the saddle you are taking some big climbing steps in a vertical direction and the going gets slower, not just another hike in the desert, make sure to take some water and you may not have cell phone reception until you get up to the saddle. Don't forget to look for snakes during the warmer months
In the Saddle looking north east
In the Saddle looking south east
From here I go, back south to the gold claim and some possible warmer temperatures at the lower elevation.
Kelty Cosmic 0 Degree cold weather sleeping bag. Bag packs down to a manageable size, durable and easy to clean, 4 pounds 164.96
LifeStraw Personal Water Filter for Hiking, Camping, Travel, and Emergency Preparedness; $19.95