We just got back from a long weekend in Cochise County. Sunday we made sort of a pilgrimage to places my grandmother's family frequented when they lived in the Stronghold and Tombstone: Cochise Hotel, NY Ranch, and Dragoon. We also visited great grandpa's grave in Willcox. We stayed at the Triangle T Guest Ranch, a mixed success because the new owners are still ironing the bugs out.
The Cochise Hotel was a lovely surprise because it is in such good shape. They still take guests and serve dinner. Their website shows the interiors and we have vowed to stay there. I was impressed that unlike other "frontier" hotels there doesn't seem to be a speck of pretension or polyester lace.
Then today we decided to see someplace new so we went to the Muleshoe Wilderness area in the Galiuros (north of Willcox). It was beautiful place with strong contrasts: moonscapes with just volcanic rocks and yucca to the lush, verdant canyon floor. In a few minutes we went from bosque was so thick you couldn't see into it in places -- to endless grasslands. Six springs run year-round at the Muleshoe so it is a miracle of a microclimate in the middle of the desert. We saw whitetail and mule deer and countless birds. The caretaker at the Nature Conservancy center told me that there were no non-native animals: 4 types of unique fish, leopard frogs, bear, bighorn sheep, mountain lions, coatimundi, foxes, and birds, birds, birds.