Sunday, September 11, 2016

Bill Williams Mtn. - Remains my Unicorn

Weather:  78°, sunny, monsoon clouds

About this hike:  Every time I try to hike up Bill Williams Mountain in the fairly remote town of Williams, AZ, something goes wrong.  From a freak May snowstorm to personal drama, this one has been my unicorn.

Today I finally got to do this hike.  The weather did try to rain on me, but it only sprinkled briefly.  I was under a time constraint and reached the summit in about an hour--no small feat.

Once you reach the summit there's more plodding along a dirt Jeep road to get to where the communications towers are located.  All I have ever wanted to do at this summit was go up the historical U.S. Forest Service Fire Tower located at the top.  

Today I reached that goal.  Due to my time constraint I was stressed out and agitated.  While it was too warm for snow in September, the wind was whipping at the summit.  I got up about half a flight of those rickety, stairs on the tower and chickened out.  I suffer from a fairly bad fear of heights.  Now only is this tower about four stories high and rickety, it hugs the edge of the mountain.  And then that wind making it sway... I just couldn't do it. 

At the summit I met some friendly folks with a 4-seater Kawasaki ATV.  They offered me a ride down, and instead of going back to the trailhead, they dropped me in downtown Williams where my ride was waiting.  That stressor was relieved. 

I didn't get to experience the fire tower, but I did get a very similar experience in late July atop Spruce Mountain in Prescott.  Regardless, Bill Williams remains my unicorn... 

ATV ride!
Fire Tower I was afraid to climb

Oak Creek Canyon is visible from the summit

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