I've been wanting to find the eastern trail and TH for Kinder Crossing since my last attempt in 2010. Also wanted to see some more of the East Clear Creek area, because it's pretty special.
I saw an old trail line on the MyTOPO layer that looked like it should be the eastern trail out of East Clear Creek. I drew it up in Route Manager, loaded it in my GPS, and hit the road.
Funny thing happened (at least for me) if you make the drive to the East side of East Clear Creek, you can actually follow signs to the Eastern TH.
. What a novel idea! The road you take to get to the TH does not show up on TOPO maps, but is very obvious in Satellite view.
The trail I'd drawn up off of MyTopo was in an entirely different location. That'll have to wait for another trip up there to see if it exists.
The trail down the East side of Kinder Is well signed at the top, Cairned getting down to the creek. If someone was trying to find this route going up from the creek, it would be near impossible without a GPS track.
The views for the walkabout in the creek were superb. Green everywhere, water everywhere, high canyon walls with interesting rock formations, just a pleasant walk downstream going North. We passed up numerous top notch empty campsites and only a pair of fishermen for humans on our almost 6 mile walk in the creek.
Most of it was actually not IN
the creek. There were game/fishermen's trails most of the way. There were only a few spots North of Horse Crossing Trail, where it was mandatory to walk in the creek. I'd suggest that if you go, plan on crossing the water and getting wet. It takes less time than looking for a dry spot to cross and sooner or later you are going to get wet. Nothing was deeper that calf high.
We found one campsite where someone had taken a lot of time to make a crayfish catcher and fish spear. http://hikearizona.com/photo.php?ZIP=269856
On the Northern end of our loop, we exited the creek to the west and followed FR's back south to the Kinder Crossing Trail. Kinder Crossing is a special area down by the creek. It can also be popular with non-hikers in street shoes.
I was glad to finally be able to find the eastern Kinder Crossing Trail and enjoy another day in the East Clear Creek area. Thanks for joining my Joe, and for not even once complaining all day.