hands down, this has to be one of the most amazing places I've ever visited in my entire 33 years of living. located near Strawberry on the Mogollon (pronounced muggy-on) rim, it took us just under two hours to get there.
the last eight miles of the journey (from the top of the rim down to the creek) had me white knuckled, gripping the dash, and asking the hubby every eight seconds if he was sure he had control of the vehicle. and every eight seconds he reassured me that "yes, I'm in control-- just calm down already." well, it sure felt as if we were going to plummet over the edge into oblivion. the road was bumpy, windy, narrow and steep. I think I held my breath the entire way and may have passed out when hubby pulled the "ahh, help! no brakes!" line on me. stinker.
between the three families, we had just about everything except the kitchen sink along: coolers, camping chairs, a table, a propane stove, baskets of food, strollers, cameras, babies, toddlers, sand toys, and even a bumbo seat, all of which had to be forged across the river so we could roost in a somewhat shady spot.
the guys set up an assembly line and all necessities got passed from hand to hand, including the babies. it was a group effort all around.
once settled in, we gazed at views like this:
a postcard perfect, crystal clear, spring fed creek. I know you're thinking crystal clear? what is she talking about? that water looks downright green! well, Gary informed me that it's the calcium deposits on the rocks that give the water a greenish cast. smart guy. at least someone did their research.
Mark and Gary had just been on a free fishing trip at Lake Mead the night before, so we had fresh stripers to fry up for lunch. delish!
there was even a sandy spot in the shade. the toddlers loaded up buckets with sand and pushed their little trucks around and were pretty much in hog heaven.
after lunch everyone lined up for a turn on the rope swing. uh, everyone except me, that is. (someone has to take the pictures, right?) it looks like Mark needs to do more yoga, or something.
watch out for those hard pushes by your uncle! yeehaw!
baby Mariah was content to watch the action from her bumbo seat.
and then it was time to tow everything back across the creek, up the cliff and into the van. it was hard to leave this little oasis in the desert.
the drive out wasn't as bad because at least we were on the inside edge. the views were gorgeous!
I would highly recommend that you put Fossil Creek on your list of places to visit. it was definitely worth it, nail-biting drive and all!