2/11/2008

The Florence Military Reservation

During the winter my brothers and I go hunting in and around the FMR. The FMR is located approximately 6 miles north of Florence Arizona. Contrary to most maps of the area it extends north another 8 miles. it encompasses about 40 square miles.

Since we started hunting in and exploring around this area we have walked through a large portion of it as you can see in the image below.
The blue lines indicate our tracks taken from our GPS devices. There would be more of them but for the first several month's we were out here we did not have GPS. I then got a GPS and in December of 2005 all 3 of us got GPS FRS radios. On an average trip we each walk from 3 to on one occasion about 8 miles. Generally we walk about 4 miles each time we are out there.

This area in late spring and early winter gets to be very green.
Here is a 360 degree panorama taken from the top of an extinct volcanic fissure near the entrance
We have seen or found a lot of strange things on our hikes. Here's a guy that was flying around in a paraglider.
We find the crumbled remains of old structures:

Mine shafts (some with water):

Here is a Video of the Mine shaft from above that had water in it.
video
While hiking through what we now know is private property, we found a javelina that was possibly shot out of season.
Quite possibly the strangest thing I found was the remains of a white owl that had been jammed between the limbs of a palo verde tree with it's wings ripped off (weird).

Things that we have found in and around the FMR that we do not have pictures of:
The hood to a truck from the 20's or 30's.
A Bed frame(intact and setup with no mattress).
The head of a pick.
The head of a shovel.
A wine bottle.
Modern hunting arrows.
Pieces from military flare signaling devices.
Parts of 155mm illumination flares.
A fired 37mm practice anti aircraft round.
5 foot lengths of PVC pipe embedded vertically in the ground in random locations.
Bones of various animals (no humans yet).
A rusted trailer (with flat tires) loaded with the gas tank from a car or truck and roofing shingles.
intact, unbent, un-rusted Duct work.
Miles of steel military communications wire.
Spent glow sticks.
An old barely readable wooden sign stating something about "you are now entering a free bird buffet".

In almost every case these items were located at least a mile from the nearest dirt road. The duct work specifically would have required 2 people to carry it.
The PVC pipe is an enigma as we find them in the weirdest places. In one case I was trying to get through some dense brush and trees and in the middle of this area was a length of PVC pipe embedded vertically in the ground.

Animals we have seen:
Rabbits
Jack Rabbits
Javelina
Coyote
Ground squirrels
Owls
Ravens
Mule deer
Cattle
Quail
Dove
tarantula

Animals we have not seen:
Snakes of any kind
Desert tortoise (bones don't count).

Animals we don't want to see:
Mexican wolfs
Mountain lions
Rattle snakes

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Just an FYI but Javilina season just ended last eweekend. So I dont think that pig was shot out of season.

Flinx said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Flinx said...

The picture of the Javelina was taken on 11-25-06 at 8:04am. The Picture of the Owl was taken on 12-02-2006 at 09:16am. It's location was N33.170105 W111.317752. I do not have an exact location on the Owl.

The pig had been shot about 50 feet from where it fell. So whoever shot it would not have lost site of it. I estimate that it had been there no more than 24 hours, when I happened upon it. As the area has a good coyote population It wouldn't have been there long.

Anonymous said...

If the PVC pipe was at least 1" and at a slight angle into the ground, waist high, it very well could have been a field expedient urinal. We used them in Iraq all the time, and the Army has a field manual on how to "construct" them. =)

Flinx said...

Yes the pipes are about 1 inch, but they are about 5 feet high and vertical.