TO BE CONTINUED (Part 1, page 1 of 11)

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Part 1

(C) Copyright, Michael Lindsay Williams, May 26, 2017




...just out day-hiking, when I found the world's largest opal...or so I thought. To be rich beyond my dreams, or needs. But I already was--or at least comfortably so. After 23 years serving as a law enforcement agent in Arizona, I had retired to my rural ranchita (4 whole acres of chapparal scrub...but quiet) nine miles from Mexico near the Huachuca Mountains in the SE corner of the state. Great hiking potential, which I'd enjoyed for several years, and wanted to do at least one more (bucket list?) climb to the top. My life had been a good long run, and I was content, even happy at times. The best for which we should all hope. Miller Peak at nearly 10,000 feet is an all-day, round-trip ten-mile, trudge uphill over 3,000 feet. As I sat on top, nursing calf cramps, loving the truly spectacular 360-degree view of the San Pedro River Valley--only northward flowing waters from Mexico into the U.S.--and dreading the knee-busting climb down, I felt the ground go trampoline under me. Quakes are rare here. Yet one in 1886 had reshaped the central part of birder-famous Ramsey Canyon in these mountains just north of my peak. I didn't panic; it stopped after just a few seconds; and I started back, looking for any surface changes, since it had been a good shaker.

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