Staying in Huachuca City meant one thing . . . we must loop the grand mountain. We took off and drove through Patagonia, stopping for breakfast, before heading eastward on Harshaw Creek Road. Along this stretch of the trip we saw cattle ranches, dry creek beds, lots of old interesting Cottonwood trees and the hint of a grassy valley. We veered off Harshaw Road onto the San Rafael Valley Road, crossing a wide grassy valley surrounded by mountains. More trees, one really good water spot at the San Pedro River and a few more cattle ranches. There were lots of Border Patrol folks present in the area. We drove over the Canelo Pass and then south on SR 83 past Parker Canon Lake. We stopped there for coffee but interestingly, none of us took any photographs of the lake!! It was cold and windy so that may have been the reason we kept our hands wrapped around warm cups rather than a cold camera body. We stayed on 83 up to Montezuma Pass, a wonderful high point that we will re-visit. It gives a wonderful, almost 360 degree of view to the Dragoon Mountains on the northeast and southward into Mexico. Our final leg was a very cured, at times hairpin curved dirt road down into the south side of Sierra Vista. Much of our trip was on dirt roads but they were mostly just fine with some washboarding in places. I hope you enjoy our looping day!
There is a 22 mile hiking trail up and over the Huachuca Mountains. It is part of the AZ Trail system. We chose not to take that route but my impression is that it would be one great hike with the rugged mountain and great vistas.