i once lost the trail on Mt Lemmon near Tucson and i had to bushwack probably 1 1/2 miles through manzanita--transecting the whole altitudinal band that it occupied in that spot. it was murder. manzanita branches don't bend at all and there were about as many dead, pointy, eye-poking branches (which are even stiffer) as there were live ones. i had many little cuts all over.
don't get lost in a manzanita patch.
...but that is really nice wood that you got Tom.
Better than having to hike through Opuntia(terry bear cactus) thickets.
I think the point of this thread is hardly not to point out what I have here and you do not...........rather, to go out and look around nature and see what ideas you come up with wherever you live.
Get away from the computer and wander out in nature..........
Most dense wood will work fine, Manzanita is not that dense itself, but soaks up water like a sponge. Most tough hard desert type woods work very well.
Mopani wood is a C4 tree all over Africa, pretty much a desert fire adapted weed tree. Some hardwoods work well after the center core has rotted out.
Lakes are good also if man made in the last 20-100 years with the old left over stumps.
Point is, folks might want to get out and see what's there.