From Patagonia, we continued on the AZ-82 highway through prime birdwatching territory, then headed north on AZ-83. We turned left on Gardner Canyon Road and right at a sign for Kentucky Camp to follow a dirt road for 5 miles. The road had been graded, but was full of ripples that could shake your teeth out if you were going too fast. It was a winding hilly road in the eastern side of the Coronado National Forest.
After parking, we had a 1/4 mile hike downhill to the "ghost town." Gold was discovered here in 1874, and separating the gold required water. Mining petered out when the distance to water sources became to great. James Stetson, a mining engineer, developed the idea of creating water reservoirs and piping the water to water cannons to shoot water at the hillsides to "mine" the gold.
|James Stetson's cabin|
|Remains of a barn/carriage house|
|Gold processing building|
|You still needed water to separate the gold|
We headed back to AZ-83.
|View from the hills near Kentucky Camp|
|The biggest tree we saw in Arizona,|
probably a Platanus wrightii/Arizona Sycamore
|Karen at the trunk of the Arizona Sycamore tree|
Next: Kartchner Caverns.