This is a great hike to build stamina for future treks in the Superstions and other local peaks. about half the difficulty of Picketpost and a quarter the difficulty of Carney Springs or the Flatiron. The trail can be accessed from the Hieroglyphics Trailhead or the Lost Goldmine Trailhead at Peralta Road just south of the Peralta Trailhead on the West side of Peralta Road. Roundtrip distance is about 1 mile less from the hieroglyphic trailhead. The peak known locally as turks head is located along the Lost Goldmine Trail about 2 1/2 miles east of the Hieroglyphic trail. The lost Goldmine Trail offers some wonderful rolling views of the Superstition foothills and beauty of the unspoiled sonoran desert. Elevations fluctuate as you proceed east giving you ample warm up. Just prior to the towering turks head which is on your left you will arrive at an old jeep road. Proceed to the north on this old jeep road 1/4 mile. At this point proceed up a drainage wash to the east and up the mountain known as Turks Head. There is a trail in spots but this is mainly a bushwhack with no right or wrong way to get to the top. As you ascend to the east and slightly to the north you will observe a large balanced rock. At this point upward and toward the southeast you will start to pick up cairns. Follow the cairns or blaze your own trail over at least three false tops to the very peak for some outstanding views of the valley below to the south and east and the future challenges behind you to the north, Carney Springs , The Superstition Ridgeline, on over to the Flat Iron.
GPS coordinates at the base of Turks Head: N3323.494 W111 24.191
GPS coordinates at the Turks Head peak: N3323.434 W111 23.788
AZ State Land Recreational Permits are available for an individual ($15.00), or a family limited to two adults and children under the age of 14 ($20.00). Permits are valid for one year from the date of purchase. Exceptions to this requirement are licensed hunters actively pursuing game in season and certain archaeological activities permitted by the Arizona State Museum. Recreation under this permit is limited to hiking, horseback riding, picnics, bicycling, photography, sightseeing, bird watching, and camping. Permits can be obtained through the mail by calling 602-364-ASLD(2753) or by visiting the Land Department office in Phoenix.
Forest Tonto Pass is a forest wide permit for recreational sites and campgrounds. Typically not for trailheads.
To Lost Goldmine Trailhead 7.6 miles east of the junction Idaho Rd / US-60. Turn Left on to FS77 which is Peralta Road. Follow FS77 5.6 miles to a left and up turnoff. Continue 1.4 miles to the Goldmine Trailhead, turn in left. There's enough parking for a small army. Restrooms are 0.5 miles up the road at Peralta Trailhead.
From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 47.1 mi - about 1 hour 10 mins From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 96.6 mi - about 2 hours 15 mins From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 191 mi - about 3 hours 13 mins
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.
A campfire must be extinguished by drowning it with water, stirring with a shovel, and repeating that process until the campfire is cold to the touch. A campfire is still a danger if it has any trace of heat, and must not be left or abandoned. Wildfires can begin by abandoned campfires that rebuild heat on windy days and then blowing embers ignite surrounding grasses and brush.