October 10, 2013
By the time we reached the Peralta trailhead, about an hour’s drive from Lost Dutchman State Park, the showery weather had cleared leaving blue skies, a freshly washed landscape, and temperatures in the 50s.
The parking lot was about half full with a few day hikers starting out, but once we adjusted our packs and headed up the trail we saw few others.
The 6.4 mile well-marked route to Charlebois Spring along the Bluff Springs and La Barge trails took us the rest of the day. Not because the trail was difficult, really only a moderate climb, but rather we were distracted by the splendor of the desert.
A magical scene of graceful saguaro cactus and odd rock formations against a backdrop of an unusually lush Sonoran desert. The previous night’s rain collected in every conceivable receptacle – a rock depression or an up-turned prickly pear paddle for instance.
Charlebois Spring is one of the most reliable water sources in the area. Although not much more than a murky pool, once filtered, the water is good to drink.
Scouting the area, we find this guy.
A couple of primitive sites sit a short distance up from the creek bed with a good fire ring and plenty of downed wood in the area to build a fire.
We leave the fly off the tent and fall asleep under the Milky Way, visible against a clear dark sky.