Annual Mirasol Camping Trip to the Gila Wilderness

September 17-19, 2019

It was just our annual Mirasol camping trip to the Gila Wilderness, but the world's first wilderness area never disappoints! Water was high and the forest was awash in summer wildflowers.

prairie smoke

Prairie Smoke

Lightfeather Hot Springs

Our last hike to Lightfeather Hot Springs was in 2013, and all I remember is a trail through scratchy thigh-high brush to a couple of bubbly mud puddles. But the Gila has recovered remarkably well from wildfires that swept through the area in 2012. The Middle Fork Gila River trail was a narrow path through chest-high sunflowers. After the second stream crossings for the first time we found dippable hot pools!

Pictographs near Lower Scorpion Campground

The beach at Forks Campground

Sunflowers on the beach at Forks Campground

Mirasol tents


The Gila Cliff Dwellings

The Gila Cliff Dwellings

Gila Cliff Dwellings

I have visited the cliff dwellings dozens of times, but I never ever tire of them!

Climbing down the scary ladder

Climbing down the scary ladder