Arizona Sunsets

Arizona Sunsets – An Unforgettable Flash of Colors

Arizona sunset photograph

There are many opportunities to photograph sunrises and sunsets from the patios at Dwon By The River B and B.

Arizona sunsets are photographed and displayed all over the world. When I was growing up my mom received Arizona Highways Magazine. We loved looking at the photographs, especially the sunsets. I always thought that they were just too perfect and you might have to wait years to get those shots. That is not the case and I have taken some photos that I thought could be improved upon only to have something better a month later. Many people that look at these photos of Arizona Sunsets thought it was done with trick photography back in the day. Today photographers are accused of photoshopping the picture. While it may be true that some will do that, it really doesn’t need to be done with the opportunities we have here.

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Birding the San Pedro River

Birding the San Pedro River – An Adventure Awaits You

San Pedro River Picture

The San Pedro River during most of the year is s slow moving river that allows the migratory birds to have food and water.

When Birding the San Pedro River you will find a different adventure no matter where you are. At the southern end of the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area the waters flow and there is easy access. In the central portion is the San Pedro House which I wrote about in an earlier blog. Between the San Pedro House and Saint David there are only a couple of locations that you can reach the river. One is Charleston Road and the other is at Fairbank ghost town on Highway 82. As you go further north in the NCA near Saint David has only one place to the river. At this place that you can hang your hat, rest in a comfortable bed and enjoy access to the flowing San Pedro River. The name of the place is Down By The River B and B. It is in a secluded location at the northern end of the NCA on the western side of the river.

Over a ten year period, we have seen and identified 99 different species of birds. We haven’t been able to photograph them all but we do have a nice selection now that we have a decent digital camera. Click on our “Bird Page” tab and go to the bottom of the page to see the different photos that we do have on our site. We also have a list of the birds that have been seen along the river at the back of the property and from the patio. Now if we included the species that we have seen and identified within an hours drive, we would probably be over 150 species.

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Southeast Arizona B and B Anniversary

Southeast Arizona B and B Anniversary – 10 Years of Memories

southeast arizona b and b anniversary picture

The Ribbon Cutting at Down By The River B and B by the Chamber of Commerce and The Red Hat Ladies of Benson happened 10 years ago.

Our Southeast Arizona b and b anniversary is the 21st of February. On that day 10 years ago, Barb and I moved to St. David and took possession of the building that would become Down By The River B and B. After almost 3 years working on the design and purchasing the furniture and décor, we were able to realize our dream. During those 3 years, we endured our work day with the knowledge that we would be headed to a better situation. We keep things secret at our jobs during that time. After the 14 months of construction, we finally move lock, stock and barrel to Saint David. We had vaulted a few hurdles after we decided to change our lives. The process was a little bumpy but no more than could be expected by such a big change.

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Arizona B and B Recipe

Arizona B and B Recipe – Country Apple Dumplings

Arizona B and B recipe picture

Our Arizona B and B recipe for apple dumplings is a taste treat.

Our Arizona B and B recipe is what makes our breakfast. We look for great recipes to serve and our guests have been pleased at our efforts with breakfasts. If we can find one that uses the fresh fruit that we can pick at Apple Annie’s, all the better. Down By The River B and B has a great breakfast and many of our guests have posted just how much they enjoy the breakfasts in their reviews. We always strive to make something that people will not find in a normal chain restaurant. Many but not all of our recipes can be found on this blog. Just click on the category button for recipes and you will find some of the most popular recipes that we have.

We recently experimented with a recipe that we thought would go good with our quiche. The savory Italian Sausage Quiche is a great number 1 entree but we also provide another secondary sweet entree to go with it. We had return guests that had previously had a secondary entree that we served so we decided to try this out. We try not to repeat for returning customers. This entree is called Country Apple Dumplings. It was such a hit that we decided to keep it and place it into our menu selection. Take a look at it and give it a try.

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Monte Cristo French Toast

Monte Cristo French Toast  

Monte Cristo French Toast picture

Monte Cristo French Toast

Everyone thinks of Monte Cristo as a sandwich. Usually this lunch sandwich is made from Ham or Turkey and cheese that is fried. We came across this while searching for another entree to serve our guests. At first it didn’t sound that appetizing for breakfast and we wondered if it would work as a breakfast menu item. But we were intrigued and so one morning when we had no guests, I tried it out. We have since served this a few times to guest and it has been a hit with them. We have changed our recipe a little as we experimented with the ingredients. So don’t  be afraid to substitute something different if you are missing an ingredient. It may be a taste sensation.

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Birding At White Water Draw

Birding at White Water Draw more than just Sandhill Cranes

Sign Picture

The sign at the entry to White Water Draw tells you about the property

Birding at White Water Draw is best done during the winter and early spring months. That is when the lake is full and the birds that winter in Southeast Arizona are in residence. The birding at White Water Draw isn’t as well known as the Willcox Playa where “Wings Over Willcox” is highlighted. In my opinion, the birding at White Water Draw, near McNeal, is better for close up photography of the cranes. Down By The River B and B is north west of White Water Draw and easily accessible by good roads. After you have a scrumptious breakfast at the b and b, you can be in White Water Draw to view the birds to your heart’s content for the rest of the day.

Birding white water draw picture

The Sandhill Cranes come in to White Water Draw after feeding in the morning. Large numbers winter here in Cochise County.

birding at White Water Draw picture

Sandhill Cranes flying in from feeding north of White Water Draw.

Angie and I took a day trip to White Water Draw, about an hour’s travel time.

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Restaurants in Cochise County

Restaurants in Cochise County – Bisbee Has Great Dining

Bisbee Overlook Picture

Bisbee is nestled in a canyon and is a wonderful place to spend the day and has some of the finest restaurants in Cochise County.

A common question our guests ask about is “Are there good restaurants in Cochise County?” Down By The River B and B is centrally located in Cochise County and when our guests go out they would like to find a restaurant that is close to where they are spending the day. To that end we have made a list of restaurants from various parts of Cochise County and have that posted on our website. We only recommend restaurants to our guests where we have dined and enjoyed the experience. It doesn’t include every restaurant is open but it has to meet our standards.

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Cochise County Shrine After The Fire

Cochise County Shrine Risen From The Ashes After The Fire

Cochise County Shrine Picture

The road to the shrine leads toward Ash Canyon and had a nice view of the Huachucas.

As I described the history of the Cochise County Shrine named Our Lady of the Sierras in my last blog,  I want to tell you about what it is like now after the fire. At the bottom of the complex is Mary’s Knoll which includes the visitor center, prayer center and business offices. This building was also totally destroyed by the fire. It has been rebuilt and was reopened in 2014. Parking for large vehicles is at this location. The steep drive up the hill is meant to be used only by cars.

Cochise County Shrine Picture

The path of the Stations of the Cross is an uphill climb but has rest areas at the stations.

Angie and I took some time to go to the Cochise County shrine just after New Year’s Day. It seemed appropriate to start the year off by visiting the shrine with our friend Karl. He didn’t know he would be on a trail with a slope that reminded him of the Grand Canyon hike we had taken together back in the mid 90s. But at least it wasn’t as long as that trail and there were many benches to stop and rest on along the way. The areas where we could stop were locations of each Station of the Cross. Most spots had a metal plaque that showed the station. There are still some stations that have not been repaired yet. The trail leads up the mountainside and past the Chapel and statues to a point that ends at the burial chamber grotto and the last station. Along the way was a Nativity Scene although that is installed during Christmas time.

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Our Lady Of The Sierras Shrine

Our Lady Of The Sierras Shrine A Short History

Our Lady of the Sierras Shrine picture

Our Lady of the Sierras Shrine is located at the southern end of the Huachuca Mountains.

Our Lady of the Sierras Shrine is located in Cochise County almost to the Mexican border on the side of the picturesque Huachuca Mountains. It is located near the Coronado National Memorial which I wrote about in a blog on September of 2013. This part of Cochise County is known for its beauty with the canyons and great vistas.

Our Lady of the Sierras Shrine picture

The driveway to the shrine has this rock with the name at the entrance.

The history of the Our Lady of the Sierras Shrine started in 1987 when the Chouinards visited family members and decided to hike into Ash Canyon. There they found a for sale sign and later bought the 8 acre property in 1988. This was to be the site for their retirement home which they built in 1991 then retiring to the area. Prior to building the home they had taken a pilgrimage to a church in Medjugorje, Yugoslavia where spiritual events had been occurring. After they had finished their home they decided to erect a cross and Patricia stated that she would like a statue of Mary next to it. This appeared to be a relatively simple task that should be easy to accomplish.

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St. David Cienega

St. David Cienega

St. David cienega picture

The map of the St. David Cienega is shown on the large map of the San Pedro Riparian NCA.

St. David Cienega picture

The road and the old railroad bed both lead to the St. David Cienega.

I talked about the history of the St. David Cienega, a remnant of the massive marsh system that was around the San Pedro River in my last blog. To reach St. David Cienega you must make a right turn onto Cary road from Escalante Rd. You can drive in all the way to the parking lot or park at this intersection and walk in about a mile. Cary Road ends at the old corrals. Alongside Cary road is the old rail bed of the Southern Pacific line that ran down to Douglas. The tracks have been pulled up in the last 4 years. You can walk on the rail bed and look for spikes that were left behind when the crews pulled up the rails and ties. You are elevated above the road using this route so it allows for a view that is not as obstructed as the one on the road. There are also some photo opportunities of old abandoned houses and ruins that can be seen along the way.

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