You know you're going to have a bad day when you get stuck by cactus before even leaving the house! Turns out, a couple of cacti had left a few presents for me stuck in my hiking gear from last week's hike I missed, YEOTCH!
Did the loop clockwise, as advised, starting on the first-second water section. Garden Valley was nice, piece of cake. I had always thought the "jumping" in jumping cholla was an exaggeration, however when I was standing up on the big clearing at the top of the mesa, 30 feet from any cactus, a slight breeze comes along. Next thing I know, I'm pulling one of those things out from the skin behind my knee, DOUBLE YEOTCH!!
Do they really somehow jump towards humidity?
I was going to look for the trail heading east to get some pictures of battleship mountain, however being stuck once was enough and frankly, I didn't see the "Second Water Springs Trail".
Stopped for lunch under Yellow Peak.
Went down to nice views of Weaver's Needle, Black Top Mesa, and Palomino Mountain.
Only going to log this as 6.7 miles since I continued onto Aylor's Arch. It was an easy hike, only 3 hours including lunch and I was back on the Dutchman's.