Safford is a real cowboy town about 2-1/2 hours north of Bisbee. It is an oasis in the desert and there are oases within the oasis in the form of artesian hot springs--seven, according to the book. I will say here that I skipped one of the commercial ones because my friend Connie Lee went there and said it was icky. That's good enough for me. The other commercial one was closed--and looked as though it had been closed for some time.
This left two within Roper Lake State Park, one in an irrigation ditch, one a little west of Safford, and one 25 miles into BLM land a little east of Safford. The only one to skip is the one the book says is in the Dankworth Pond area of Roper Lake State Park--it isn't really a hot pool so much as a wide area in a small mud-bottomed creek. The other four were great.
First, I decided to try to find the one west of Safford called Watson Hot Well. The directions were a little daunting. Or they would have been for some people--I don't seem to value my vehicles much, so when it said to turn right off the road and drive up an unmarked wash for two miles, I did it. Here are pictures of the tub at the end of the wash and the car that made it there (click for the big versions). No one would go with me, so the pictures aren't as interesting as they could have been. Maybe going hot pool hunting in the middle of summer didn't sound like fun. Go figure.
That hot tub was just about my favorite because it was so nice and remote. No one showed up while I was there except a roadrunner, panting in the shade of a salt cedar.
To be continued....