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Patagonia, AZ

Before we left Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, we stopped at the Visitor Center one last time. Emma had completed all the requirements for her first Junior Ranger certificate, so we went in to have her take the oath and receive her badge. She’s very proud of it.

The Tohono O’odham Indian Nation was quiet. Lots of open road, not much to see or visit. I didn’t score any prickly pear jam, sadly.

Desert Museum kestrel.jpg
A Kestrel on the arm of a Desert Museum docent

We ended up a few hours later at the amazing Arizona Sonoran Desert Museum just west of Tucson. That place is fantastic ““ highly recommended. It’s a superb place for taking wildlife photos. I captured a few more hummingbird shots, as well as many other creatures and plants. (Check out the new photos I uploaded.) We stayed until closing, and then headed another two hours to our destination: Patagonia, AZ.

Why Patagonia, a off-the-beaten path western town up in the hills? I’m not sure yet. Our friends Charlie and Lynn winter here and they’ve raved about the place. It seems to be one of those rare “undiscovered” gems, far enough from the cities and off the beaten path enough that it doesn’t get a huge influx of tourists, yet genuine, historic, and friendly. So we took Charlie’s advice and came down. The offer of free courtesy parking with water and electric had nothing to do with it “¦ but it was a nice incentive. We’ll stay until the end of January, and then relocate up to Tucson for a few days.

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