Chiricahua Mountains: Then and Now

Below is a compilation of historic and modern views from Cave Creek Canyon and Paradiase AZ in the Chiricahua Mountains of southeastern Arizona.  The historic photographs were located online, then overlaid on Google Earth to locate the site where the original photographer made the image.  A series of trips into Cave Creek Canyon and to Paradise followed to locate the place found on Google Earth, then a replicate photograph was made.  Replicate photographs were made from:

1. The intersection of Portal Road and Forest Service Road 42B at the mouth of the canyon.
2. The entrance to the Coronado National Forest on Forest Service Road 42.
3. Just before the entrance to Sunny Flat Campground on Forest Service Road 42.
4. At several locations in Sunny Flat Campground.
5. Half way up the ridge on the NE side of Paradise just before the bridge across Turkey Creek off Forest Service Road 42B.

The historic and modern photographs were then aligned with respect to one another in Sony Vegas Pro.  Since no information was available about the original camera and owing to differences in lens between the original camera and the modern camera used to replicate the view, the aspect ratio of each photograph was not maintained allowing better transitions between the historic and modern photographs.  The tops of the mountains (or ridge lines) were visible in every historic photograph and the skyline was used to initially align the photographs vertically and horizontally, followed by compressing or expanding the vertical aspect to align elements in the fore ground.


  1. It is nice viewing the now and then pictures to compare Paradise was such a big town then and now 8 people or so live but the trees are much bigger.

  2. The early residents certainly had everything cleared out around the town, but boom towns frequently return to their original condition after the boom subsides.