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4Xploring Let's Explore the Back Country

2023 El Camino del Diablo Adventure Recap

Southwest Arizona 
January 23-27, 2023

On this adventure, we explored the extreme southwest section of Arizona, near the Mexican border, running the El Camino del Diablo (“the devil’s highway”) trail, and various areas in the Sonoran Desert.  We visited abandon mine sites, old ranches, oases of water in the desert, and saw incredible plant and animal life.  We camped out under the stars and had some epic, gourmet-style camp meals!  As repeat participant Del Albright happened to join us on this trip, campfire music was in strong supply, and there may possibly have been a few shenanigans along the way!

Next are some images from the adventure from participant Wayne Bennett. More photos from the adventure follow.

We started our El Camino Del Diablo (Highway of the Devil) Adventure in the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument this year. Not only did it have organ pipe cacti but some of the most impressive stands of Saguaro Cacti I’ve seen. And this leg included a bonus trip to the border wall.

Driving through Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument
Some of the thickest stands of Saguaro Cactus I have ever seen. Trail boss Levenhagen leading with Del Albright just behind.
An impressive organ pipe cactus
Lots of Organ Pipe Cacti too.
Border Wall with Mexico
We got right up to the border wall. There is a major Mexican Hwy just behind.

4Xploring lead us down El Camino Del Diablo (The Road of the Devil) with a long and colorful history. It was first used by prehistoric native Americans. Spanish explorers lead by Melchior Diaz used the route in 1540. Thousands used the route during the 1849 gold rush. Hundreds of travelers lost their lives to thirst and exposure on this parched and desolate route and many of them are still buried along the route.

By the Official El Camino del Diablo Sign
Our group posing next to the route historic sign.
Border Patrol Forward Station
One of two Border Patrol Forward Operating Posts along the route.
Circle of 8 Gravesite Marker
Circle of 8 Gravesite. A family of 8 was reportedly buried here after their water container broke and they died of thirst and exposure in the late 1800s. Literally hundreds have lost their lives along this rugged route.
Stuff Happens
Stuff happens. In this case, a punctured tire sidewall.
This is what 35 tire plugs looks like. It held for the trip! The spare went on before returning home.
Border Wall Selfie
Border wall selfie
Chris and Bob cooking another delicious meal
Chris and Bob cooking another delicious meal
Food cooking on the "nuclear skottle"
Food cooking on the "nuclear skottle"
Dinner at a restaurant
Dinner at a restaurant
I'm king of the world!
I'm king of the world!
Riding on the ridge
Riding on the ridge
Wavy arms
Wavy arms
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