Along Arizona Highway 96 between Kirkland and Hillside
The drive through Thompson Valley surrounded by the McCloud Mountains took us past massive boulders of well worn granite plutons and a diverse desert landscape.
One story of how Bagdad got its name centers around a father and son team of 1800s miners when the ore was hauled out on mule teams in bags. The son would be mining, filling the bags with ore while the father would be preparing to transport the ore. When the son needed another bag to fill, he would yell, "bag Dad".
The plaque reads, “In honor of the men and women in mining who helped to build our past and are molding our future. Cyprus Bagdad Copper Corporation. WC Rubottom sculptor. Welded copper rod 10.5 feet and 8.5 feet. July 4, 1989.” Bagdad is a company owned town.
Along Arizona Highway 97
We didn’t see much wildlife other than Red tail hawks too far away for my camera.
Yet the desert shows a green carpet and blooms of life after a moist winter.
We took a short side trip on a gravel road towards Burro Creek Recreation Area, yet the day was waning so we left further explorations for another day.
The road to Burrow Creek
Supposedly, the area was named after a large population of burros discovered by Army officers in 1869. They were probably left behind by prospectors.
Scroll down to Sky Watch Friday for more photos of this desert journey.