Before pulling out of Patagonia State Park, I checked one more time to see if there had been any cancellations, thus allowing us to extend our stay.  No such luck.  So we stuck with the original plan and hit the road with Tucson, Arizona, as our destination.Tucson MissionsTucson AZA few days earlier, I made notes on a couple of places to stop and explore along our route, but after indulging in a little too much of my “special” lemonade the night before, I was fighting a mild hangover headache and wasn’t in the mood to do anything but find our next home site.

Gosh, I’m such a lightweight.  I guess that can be viewed as a good thing.

The mission in Tumacácori and the cute town of Tubac will just need to wait until next years excursion.

Two hours after leaving Patagonia, Arizona, we  pulled into a boondocking area known as Snyder Hill near the far southwest side of Tucson.  We quickly found a level spot and proceeded to set up home.  While nursing my headache the rest of the day, Al and I discussed the things we wanted to see and do during this stay in Tucson.Tucson Arizona

It turns out, we had only two things on our want to do list.  This was our third visit to Tucson and on both previous visits, Mission San Xavier del Bac was a place I wanted to see yet eluded our schedule.  Not this trip!  I visited not once, but twice.historical sites in Tucsonhistorical missionsI shared a few of my morning photos of Mission San Xavier del Bac via a previous post and today I’m sharing my evening shots.

During this late afternoon visit, I entered the mission as it was being readied for the evenings service.  I hadn’t realized the mission held a Saturday evening mass.

I took a couple of quick interior photos but didn’t linger as I didn’t want to seem disrespectful.  I’m sure it was fine as there were plenty of other folks snapping away, but for me, I felt a little uncomfortable doing so.

About a half hour later folks started arriving for Mass and by 5:30 the mission was packed allowing for standing room only.

Spanish architectureSpanish Colonial architectureSpanish Colonial architectureWith my desire to visit and photograph Mission San Xavier satisfied, our next ‘must do’ on our list was seeing our friends.  Mike and Linda originally planned to boondock with us at Snyder Hill but a heat wave had rolled in requiring them to use the air conditioner for pooch, Lucy, while they were out and about all day exploring.  Thus, they were staying at the Gilbert Ray Campground just up the road with electric hook-up.


Al, Ingrid, Linda, Mike, and Lucy

We invited Mike and Linda over to our place instead of going out to eat so Lucy could join us.  We had a great visit and realized our travels will be overlapping a few more times in the next couple of months just as they did last year.boondocking with friends

I’m assuming there could be a few more happy hours accompanied by more amazing sunsets in our future.  And by the way, I stuck with water the entire evening.  This lightweight couldn’t handle even the thought of an alcoholic beverage 😉boondocking dry campingWith both items checked off our list, we bid farewell to Tucson. Until next time!Spanish Colonial ArchitectureFYI…. This visit took place during the 3rd week in February and I know all you folks to the north are dealing with severe snowstorms and record low temperatures.  I feel for you and although all the photos of snow are beautiful, I don’t miss the shoveling or bad road conditions.  Yet another reason why we love our RV –  we follow the weather.Spanish architecture


Boondocking at Snyder Hill southwest side of Tucson

Collapsible Silicone Party Platter and Serving Tray with Lid by Cood Cooking
Folding Chat Set


73 thoughts on “Lightweight

    • Snyder Hill is along Hwy 86, S San Joaquin Road, and W Old Ajo Road. It was workable for a few nights. I think in the future we’ll probably stay at Gilbert Ray Campground instead. I guess it depends on ones expectations and what you plan on doing in the area.

  1. Love your pictures of Mission San Xavier del Bac! Calgary being a fairly ‘new’ city doesn’t have too many (=none) buildings from that era:)

    • The southern part of the U.S. has some amazing structures dating back to the 1700’s. Calgary has some beautiful modern buildings, and I especially like the newer houses 🙂

    • Thank you Karen. Yes, I read about Greg’s stop at Snyder Hill. Great place to crash for a few days to explore Tucson. I appreciate him sharing his other stops…. notes for us to keep in mind for next season.

    • Arizona provides some of the most beautiful skies I’ve every seen. I have one more month in the desert before heading north to try and capture more stunning sunsets 🙂

  2. The shadow of the church on the mission building… and the sun peeking out from behind…MAGNIFICENT! Favorite photos! Hope you are feeling better… 😉

    • Thanks Nancy. The lighting that evening was fantastic and I’m feeling much better thank you…. abstaining from the consumption of alcohol does wonders LOL.

  3. We love this mission as well but have not seen it at night. Thanks for the lovely photos Ingrid! And as for being a lightweight, I have been in those ranks all my life!

    • Ah, now that could be an entertaining evening…. two lightweights over indulging. The hubby’s would be dually entertained. As for that mission, I loved seeing it in morning light as well as evening. It was so worth a return visit 🙂

  4. What a heat wave? I can’t believe it and here we are still in the damps! Since we skipped the Mission, when in Tucson next winter we will or I will definitely there. Your great photography always entices me to see the places you have captures. I will be more of a lightweight this time around, Im avoiding even wine this time.

    • Does that mean you and I won’t be doing shots of Bourbon in the future? And did I read that correctly…. you will be in AZ next winter? We’ll hightail it to Rockport at the end of Dec and rush back to AZ as soon as our birding time is over. Staying exactly one month and not a day over 😉 I know I won’t find you and Steve in Texas again LOL.

      • Really, Rockport ? Does that mean you will have a shining new DSLR? Did you realize that I thought of you when I posted the picture where 80% of redheads migrate near South Padre Island? And yes we will be in AZ /CA next winter. Perhaps by the time we meet again Im off my no booze rule 🙂

        • I can be a bad influence you know 😉 No new DSLR yet. Besides I love my FZ200 thus not pushing for a new camera. I hardly use the new little Sony but when I do it works just fine (still not the 19 though)

  5. We stayed at Snyder Hill last fall and found it to be a very nice, quiet place (with the exception of the coyotes). We hit the Desert Museum and Saguaro National Park loved them both. Did not know about the Mission, would have loved to have seen that!

    • The Desert Museum is great and we really should revisit it. Perhaps next winter. Snyder Hill worked out fine for us. I’m not sure we heard the coyotes there but I’m sure hearing them at Lake Pleasant tonight 🙂

  6. Loving the variation and the beauty of the sky in your photos Ingrid. Perhaps you had a hang…oh I mean headache but your photos are as gorgeous as always, Lovely lighting.

  7. When we meet and if you will share, I need to know how to make your “special” lemonade. Sounds like a drink I could get to like…hehe

    San Xavier del Bac is one of my favorite missions! Beautiful sunset with the Mission.

  8. Okay, now I’m really bummed that we didn’t get to the mission — and we were in Tucson for 10 days! Like you said, it gives us something to look forward to next trip. Our drink of choice was gin and tonics while sitting out in the desert at Gilbert Ray. I rarely drink margaritas because they go down way too easy, haha! 🙂

    • Well then you understand why that bottle water filled with margaritas went down way too easily effecting me as if I was some young college kid. It was good for a few laughs.
      Regarding the Mission – now you have something to look forward to on your way to FL 🙂

  9. I enjoy your photographs which I’d judge to be some of the best of all blogs. I wanted to thank you for also taking the time to place internet links in your postings. I find myself clicking on the links, especially looking over different camp sites. Do you guys have any one source you prefer to use when researching for sights with at least electrical service? We don’t plan to have a follow car with our fifth wheel so that would make it a little harder to scout out sites. Therefore, I’ve been adding well reviewed and rated sites to our spreadsheet.

    • Awe, thank you! We rarely travel with a second vehicle any more and thus aren’t able to scout either. I have a tab/page on the blog titled “RV Resources” that has links to some helpful sites. I also use a lot of bloggers to find interesting places to stay. We too usually look for electric sites.

  10. What a beautiful place that mission is, both inside and out. I’m not surprised you went back again. Your first photo is fabulous, and would make a great painting. Now I’m wondering exactly what goes into your ‘special’ lemonade. 🙂

    • Ah, yes the eye of a painter. I think you could capture that mood beautifully. Those water bottles were filled with yummy margaritas. When asked by a passer by what we were drinking, we responded “lemonade” as I don’t think open alcohol consumption was allowed in the park 😉

  11. I’m looking forward to following the weather again real soon. Next winter we’ll spend a bit of time in the Tucson area and now I look forward to seeing the Mission myself. AND, we never made it to Tubac last time either….perhaps you’ll see us there!


    • I’m sure after the winter you’ve endured, you’re looking forward to a snow free season next year and definitely a warmer one. I’m sure we’ll be bumping into each other this summer in Colorado and again next winter in Arizona. I see a few happy hours in our future 🙂

    • Such avid boondockers as yourselves, I would’ve thought you’d already stayed at Snyder Hill. It’s an ok place to stay and visit the desert Sonoran Museum. There can be a fair amount of other campers though. Special recipe? Jose Cuervo premixed margaritas. Easy, peezy 🙂

  12. Loved your photos of the Mission in the evening hours..a whole new perspective! Isn’t that sanctuary amazing? Too bad you didn’t make it to Tubac, but that gives you another adventure to look forward to!!!

    • But of course, we have to keep some sights as a mystery for the next time thru. No need to see it all on the first go around. The mission was beautiful in the a.m. and equally in the p.m. The desert skies at sunset are always a bonus 🙂

    • Thank you Carol. You know, I wouldn’t want to have to pick between the morning or evening lighting. The golden hour always produces some unique image opportunities.

  13. Great pics of the Mission, Ingrid! Ok, so THAT’s why you were drinking water during our happy hour together. With your great nachos and guacamole, it just didn’t make sense to me! Hahaha! See you down the road! -Linda

  14. What! no recipe for the ‘special’ lemonade?!:P i have shot that mission several times but that one with the shadows is so beautiful, Ingrid, i am very jealous.
    i look forward to your tubac post, its so cute, and a so many places to make me part with my credit card!

    • Sometimes it’s the shots you don’t plan on that turn out the best. When I saw the shadows, I started snapping away excitedly. Lemonade = margaritas that we poured into our empty water bottles. It was safer for us to refer to our drinks as “lemonade” 😉

  15. I really have enjoyed the virtual tour, Ingrid! Glorious mission through your lens. Love these beautiful shots, especially the shadow image and the second last one. 🙂

    • Thank you Amy. When I saw the shadow on the building I couldn’t help but snap away. Rather unique and the second to the last photo is also a favorite of mine. The light that evening presented some interesting photographic opportunities.

  16. Great memories of Tubac…still chopping away on my mesquite cutting board and have my favorite painting from there. Guessing the Lenten season really produced a crowd parishioners. Ok, what’s the famed lemonade recipe?

    • I’m sure next year we’ll meander around Tubac a little. Recipe? Premixed bottle of Jose Cuervo margarita. I do know how to make a mean margarita but got lazy. I used the premix, chilled, filled empty water bottles…. tada …. proceeded to get sh*t faced while watching a beautiful sunset. I didn’t realize the water bottles are 24 oz. until the next day when I questioned just how much did I drink. I never drink much alcohol so hubby was dually entertained. Now I’ll go weeks maybe even months before imbibing again.

  17. Your love for the Mission shines through in these awesome and artistic photos, Ingrid. Good for you and your husband for traveling with the good weather! 🙂

    • Thank you Jet. I just loved the way the lighting changed as the sun was setting. The mood just resonated with me in a strange sort of way 🙂

  18. Brilliant photos.

    Ingrid, up North we aren’t all experiencing snow and cold. Out here on the West Coast, summer, or at least spring has been here for a month. For a week we have had blue skies and temperatures in the 60’s. Although at night it gets a tad chilly at about 30.

    • You are lucky the winter has not been bad for you. We have family in the Chicago area and it has been a brutal winter for them. And they wonder why we don’t visit for Christmas!!! It’s been in the 40’s some nights in AZ but warms nicely during the day…. loving it 🙂

  19. I loved the mission too. There was a wedding going on the day we were there, so thankfully I still got photos before it all started.

    • Glad you were able to snap away before the wedding. If it hadn’t been for mass, I would have lingered inside taking a few more photos. Although I was in my element outside and the light was great that evening.

    • Thank you Lisa and I agree it is very picturesque. I remember when you visited and brought this stunning piece of architecture to my attention 🙂 Hope TX warms for you soon!

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