Sunday, August 30, 2009


I think this is a garage. (The house was also pyramid-shaped.) In the background, you can see the Superstition Mountains, and if you look very closely, you can see Four Peaks, just to the right of the cactus.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

More Scrap Metal

Here's another scrap metal character
from the same yard as the Bud-drinking cowboy

Friday, August 28, 2009

Horseshoe Park

Queen Creek's Horseshoe Park and Equestrian Centre opened last January on what used to be the local landfill. There is a large, covered arena and several smaller ones, like this one where the team roping event pictured above was held. This is opening day when the community was invited to enjoy equestrian events, 4H displays and carnival rides.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

GM Proving Grounds

General Motors closed their desert proving ground in Mesa (north of Queen Creek, along Ellsworth) this summer and moved it to Yuma. I don't have dates, but I heard that when the facility opened they tested the prototype for the Corvette here. For the last few years, only a small division of workers remained at the facility, presumably closing things down and preparing for the move.

This is a picture of the water tower that I took Monday afternoon. Last night (Tuesday), when I drove by, I saw the GM logo had been painted over--there was just a blue square in the middle of the white tank. Unfortunately, Monday's picture isn't what I had hoped it would be (the angle from the parking lot wasn't great and I wanted to go back and try again), but at least I do have this shot.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Buyer Beware

I was driving in the area south of Hunt Highway when I came across this sign, which I think refers to the soil and a risk of fissures developing. Queen Creek is known for having fissures, tension cracks in the Earth's surface that have formed as a result of groundwater pumping. Intense rainfall can erode the sides of these cracks, expanding them into substantial chasms. The typical fissure is 3-10 feet wide and 5-20 feet in apparent depth.

Having said all that, I'm not sure that I've ever actually seen a fissure. There was a big story about four years ago, after particularly heavy rains, about a driveway that was destroyed when a fissure opened underneath it and another one about an unfortunate horse that fell into a fissure. You are taking a risk when you buy a residential property in some areas, like this one that the tire's message refers to, but I think the media has blown Queen Creek's fissures out of proportion.

Monday, August 24, 2009


Last April, we hiked Hieroglyphic Trail in the Superstition Mountains, one of the best places in Arizona to see examples of Hohokam petroglyphs like these. There are also great views of Phoenix, abundant wildlife (mostly lizards), and a few shallow pools of water.

Anyone know of any other great trails for seeing petroglyphs, especially around Phoenix?

Sunday, August 23, 2009


I stopped to take pictures of the mountains and just happened to catch this guy. I would have liked to have zoomed in more, but unfortunately, they move so fast that it's hard to even catch them unless you happen to be at the right place, at the right time.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Finally, Rain!

Not exactly the picture I was hoping for (rain drops on a leaf),
but there's a chance of rain all weekend

Friday, August 21, 2009

Thursday, August 20, 2009


"Spirit" by Buck McCain
Located on the Arizona State University campus in Tempe

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Hawes Road

Much of Queen Creek is still rural or county island. This picture is taken at the corner of Hawes and Happy roads, just north of Hunt Highway, looking west. Hawes Road is named for Ernest E. Hawes, who started farming in Queen Creek in the 1930s.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Sunday, August 16, 2009


Rudy's has a dedicated following here in Queen Creek. It's been family-owned and operated for more than 30 years. The food is what I'd call home style Mexican, and you either love it or don't (there's not a lot of in between based on experience and on what I've heard). Despite the new restaurants across the street, including a Mexican restaurant that's come and gone, there are always cars in Rudy's parking lot. I think it'll probably be around for another 30 years.

Saturday, August 15, 2009


I'm not sure what this tank was used for, but my husband thinks it could have been milk. There used to be a several large dairy farms in the East Valley; today, there are only a handful of smaller dairies left, mostly in Gilbert and Chandler. I've heard those larger farms have moved south to Maricopa.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Queen Creek's Stage Coach

This is all that remains of the old Andrada homestead, which the Arizona Stage Company used as a rest stop on its route from Florence to Mesa. It was a simple one-room building about 10 feet by 10 feet with a door on the south side and gun ports instead of windows. The stage company came through Queen Creek and used this site from approximately 1868 to 1916.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Farm Land

Looking across farmer's field (quite possibly part of Schnepf Farm)
Superstition Mountains in the background

Saturday, August 8, 2009

San Tan Flat

San Tan Flat is one of Queen Creek's best restaurants. It's not just the food, which is good, but the atmosphere: pool tables, video games, marshmallow roasting, live music and dancing! (Yes, after a long battle, dancing at San Tan Flat is legal again!)

Friday, August 7, 2009