Original plan was Hell's Hole in the Salome Wilderness but with all the 2-day backpack triplogs we figured it was more than we cared to deal with this hike. So Friday night we looked at alternatives and settled on either Cooper Forks cliff dwellings or possibly Devil's Chasm since Tracey hadn't been there. Thankfully I had one other shorter option as a backup because once we passed through the dense smoke in the Globe area from a fire on Madera Peak (west peak of the Pinals) and then saw the massive smoke plume across the sky toward the east from the Tanner fire in the Sierra Ancha we figured it would be smoky near any of those ruins so decided against them. (And as it turned out the Young Highway was closed so we would not have been able to get into the Salome Wilderness at all.
Instead we opted for a shorter hike down Lower Coon Creek. We wasted a ton of time on the hike to the Salt River by trying to stay dry, numerous times heading some distance from the creek through cats-claw, cholla, buckthorn, and miscellaneous other brush to stay that way. Once we got to the Salt River we were met by dark brown water and the brush along the bank was thick as can be so we tried climbing up to avoid it. But Tracey wasn't too enthused by the steep terrain or the large boulder-field so we cut it short and headed back.
On the return trip we decided the quickest and easiest course was to just get wet and stay in the creek as much as possible, leaving it only when there was too much debris to get through. Since we were both wearing Tevas that worked out quite well.
Too many photos to choose the best from to post here so at the moment all 70 photos are here:
(Included are photos taken from the Redmond Flat and Horseshoe Bend areas on the south side of the Upper Salt River later in the day)