A morning drive took us through dramatic scenery across the Arizona state line to Wilcox. The sunshine was bright and we were surprised to see so much standing water in the desert. Usually rain soaks into the desert quickly; they must have had a lot of precipitation. If it's not too cool, the desert should green up and start blooming soon. The drive on 1-10 took us over the continental divide, but if there weren't a sign telling us this, we would have never guessed. Of more interest were the masses of rock tossed here and there across the flat desert. We've taken this route a number of times and have never had time to stop. The stops in Carlsbad Caverns, White Sands National Monument and Las Cruces were on the list as a result. Tomorrow we will check out one of those picturesque rock piles at Chiricahua National Monument, the last stop on the list for this area. By the time we learned about it last time we were here, we were too far west to double back for a visit.
We are not the only ones here trying to escape the winter cold. Willcox is a noted birding area and a sand hill crane festival will take place here next weekend. The cranes come from the Rocky Mountains as far north as Alberta. They like this agricultural spot, because they can find so many leftover bits of grain in the fields. At the end of the day they like to gather in the small lakes that form here in the winter. Since some crane varieties are five feet tall, they can by easy to find, but we struck out this afternoon. The bodies of water we could get close to had no cranes and they could have been anywhere feasting in the fields. This isn't Disneyland. We'll look for them again tomorrow as we drive to Chiricahua.