The 118 mile dirt road crosses Organ Pipe NM, Cabeza Prieta NWR and part of the Goldwater Range. The Cabeza Prieta NWR and Goldwater Range require permits in order to enter the NWR and Range, so on one of our grocery runs to Ajo, we applied for the permits, sat through the mandatory video in order to be issued the permits and maps, and obtained all the necessary paperwork . The permits are good until the end of June and it turns out there are other places to explore that require the same permits. You are suppose to call the range the day you enter so they know you are there. In some cases you need to obtain a gate combination. We were able to call the day before, mainly because there is no cell coverage in some of the areas.
The day started out early. We left the campground at 7:00 A.M. so we could top off the fuel for the Jeep in Why and be at the intersection of Rt 85 and Darby Road south of Ajo by 8:00 A.M. to meet the other couple.
Joel and I had already driven part of the road past Bates Well several times during our "buffelgrassing" pursuits so I knew the road well enough to take the lead. As it turned out I lead most of the time and did all of the driving.
The morning light hitting the mountains was pretty:
This sign is self explanatory. If you need help, and you don't have your US passport or proof that you are a US citizen, you may get a free ride back to Mexico!
In the beginning of this posting there was a picture of the lush desert. As we drove further we encountered some flowers and sandy desert. Aside for these flowers there was little vegetation.