Picturesquely named, equally picturesque in reality. Vulture Mine Road stretches from US 60 in Wickenburg, almost all the way to Interstate 10 near Tonopah. Along the way, there is a strange little population of Echinomastus and some incredible desert beauty.
The Echinomastus here are perhaps closest to what J. Pinkney Hester first described as Echinomastus arizonicus. These were plants from what was then Yuma County, AZ, in an area that is now in La Paz County, over by Bouse. (More on those plants later, as I did finally find them). Not entirely sure precisely what would distinguish Echinomastus arizonicus from Echinomastus johnsonii, but it was immediately apparent to me at this Vulture Mine Road site that these plants are somewhat intermediate between acunensis and johnsonii.
Some general shots of the trip. It is still fairly hospitable around June 1 in the local deserts.
Some really nice Mammillaria tetrancistra and other sights on the way home:
After this little jaunt, I moved into my own place and didn't travel again until late July, to Santa Fe.