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Prospectors Trail #57 - Superstition Mountains, AZ

Guide 135 Triplogs  1 Active Topic
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance One Way 0.6 miles
Trailhead Elevation 2,221 feet
Elevation Gain 317 feet
Accumulated Gain 362 feet
Avg Time One Way 1 hour
Kokopelli Seeds 1.81
Backpack Yes & Connecting
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6  2021-07-10
Treasure Loop Trail #56
30  2021-05-18
Treasure Loop Trail #56
9  2021-03-09
Superstition Peak 5024 - Siphon Draw
1  2021-02-17
Jacobs Treasure Prospector
8  2021-01-17
Treasure Loop to Praying Hands
27  2020-12-31
Prospectors Trail Plus
7  2020-12-04
Silly Mountain to LDSP
7  2020-11-06
Peak 3845 - Superstition Mountains
Page 1,  2,  3,  4,  5 ... 8
Author AZLOT69
author avatar Guides 175
Routes 247
Photos 7,884
Trips 1,914 map ( 16,193 miles )
Age 70 Male Gender
Location Gold Canyon, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Feb, Jan, Dec, Nov → 4 PM
Seasons   Early Autumn to Late Spring
Sun  5:34am - 7:30pm
Official Route
40 Alternative
Historic Fire Perimeteracres
🔥 2020 Superstition Fire9.6k

Fossicking On The Trail
by AZLOT69

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In the broad definition, prospecting is the search for minerals, oil, flora, or fauna, so in one way or another, everyone on the trail is prospecting. The Lost Dutchman State Park has a trail system for nearly all abilities. Named for Jacob Waltz, the fabled Lost Dutchman, even the easiest trails in this park can give you an up-close personal experience with the Superstition Mountains. As you experience these trails, imagine the old prospector who historically would be on his hands and knees inspecting and combing thru the washes, ridgelines, and rock outcroppings looking for the color gold or other minerals.

To describe the Prospector trail as short would be a disservice because the only thing it is short on is distance. The trail can be accomplished in either direction and can be used in various ways to create larger loops within the park.

Described here in a counterclockwise fashion (south to north), starting from the Siphon Draw Trail, you turn left or north onto Jacobs Trail #58. In one-quarter mile, you come to a marked T intersection. Turn right and you are on the Prospectors trail. The trail will take us to the Treasure Loop Trail #56. Awesome views of the Flatiron high above Siphon Draw will inspire your photography ambitions. Take your photos now, as the Flatiron will soon be out of sight. Late afternoon or evening sun can offer fantastic variations of special effects on this most dramatic face of the Superstitions.

The trail is a moderate climb and gains 317 feet in the next 0.6 miles. Rocky and sometimes loose footing describe the trail as it climbs up compacted scree which has come off the mountain over the centuries. Ahead and to the right are tailings from the Palmer Mine. Equipped with binoculars, you can easily spot some diggings. Equally viewing the towering crags in front of you with bionic eyes, you may spot some wildlife and natural caves.

At one-quarter mile, a bench should encourage you to turn around and look how far up you are from the valley. You can see the skyline of downtown Phoenix from here on a clear day, the Goldfield Mountains, the Goldfield Ghost town, South Mountain, and the San Tans to the south. After the switchbacks and just past the second bench at 0.4 miles, an unmarked trail to the right is the trail to the Palmer Mine although it is much easier to access off the Siphon Draw trail. Reaching the highpoint of the trail gives you additional views of Four Peaks to the north. Arriving at the third bench, marks the end of the Prospector trail as the Praying Hands feature looms above. Joining the signed Treasure Loop Trail #56 at this point offers options on your return to the trailhead.

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2008-10-05 AZLOT69

    One-Way Notice
    This hike is listed as One-Way.

    When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
    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.

    Permit $$
    AZ State Parks more info
    2021 Day Use Fees range from $2–$30

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To Siphon Draw Trailhead
    From Mesa, follow Highway 60 East to Idaho Road. Turn North onto Idaho Road, which is SR88, and follow North 2.2 miles. SR88 bends right just past Scenic St. and Idaho continues North. Be sure to go right and stay on SR88. Follow SR88 4.9 miles to the Lost Dutchman State Park. Turn right into the park. Pay the fee, then follow the signs to the trailhead.

    Free Alternative:
    Utilize the Crosscut Trailhead 0.7 mi in on FR78. It is 2 miles on Jacobs Trail #58 to the junction with Siphon Draw #53. Which is 0.85 mi into #53.
    2.00 - 0.85 = 1.15 mi extra each way

    Mining Camp
    This former free access point is now private as of Dec 2016.
    2017 - cancel Christmas. It is closed.

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 41.3 mi - about 52 mins
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 134 mi - about 2 hours 9 mins
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 186 mi - about 2 hours 56 mins
    page created by AZLOT69 on Oct 05 2008 9:15 am
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