Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Kartchner Caverns State Park

We really are enjoying our stay at Kartchner Caverns State Park. Now, part of it is that we just hadn't stayed in a real state park anywhere for quite a while. It's nice to be out, away from a city, surrounding my nature. But mostly, this is just a really nice park.

The park is located on Arizona 90 about 10 or 12 miles south of Benson, Arizona, in the southeastern part of the state. The main attraction of the park is the caverns, but Donna and I came for different reasons. In fact, we don't even plan to go on a cave tour; we've been on so many over the years that they no longer interest us. We mainly came because of the location. I've wanted to visit Tombstone for years, and it is nearby.

But the park offers a short hiking trail, the Foothills Loop Trail, and I'll report on that in another entry.

The park offers sites with water and electricity; full hookups are not available. All interior roads and sites are paved, though our site -- # 40 -- was very unlevel from side to side and from front to back (see park map). 2 restrooms/showers are located in the camping area. Each site has a picnic table. A new service, just started about 10 days or so before our arrival, is WiFi. Passwords are required, and these are issued per user, and that process is a bit tedious. We ended up going to the Discovery Center to get our pass code. The connection worked well once we were able to log in, though I did have to log in at intervals. I'm sure they will refine the process once they get a bit more experience at it and get the bugs worked out. Recycling bins are available for aluminum, plastic, and mixed paper.

One of the 2 restrooms/showers in the camping area.
Scenery is beautiful, especially towards the Whetstone Mountains on the west side of the park in the Coronado National Forest. The weather was perfect during our stay, with daily highs in the mid to upper 70s and lows in the mid to upper 40s.

This is the view from our trailer.

Donna enjoying the beautiful weather. Notice boards under trailer tires to help level it.

Beautiful view of the Whetstone Mountains from the Discovery Center

Another view of the Whetstone Mountains. You can see the tops of some of the RVs in our campground through the brush.
Even if you don't intend to tour the cave, take time to visit the Discovery Center. A couple of rooms in the Center are designed to resemble a cave. The entire facility is well done. There is also a small cafe, the Bat Cave Cafe, where you can get basic snack bar foods.

Room in the Discovery Center designed to resemble a cave.
I don't know if we will ever pass this way again, but if we do, this park will be a likely spot if we are in an RV.

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