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Woodbury TH to Tortilla TH via Red Tanks, AZ

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Guide 2 Triplogs  1 Active Topic
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Globe > Queen V NE
3 of 5 by 2
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Difficulty 4 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance Shuttle 12.7 miles
Trailhead Elevation 3,520 feet
Elevation Gain 1,295 feet
Accumulated Gain 2,400 feet
Avg Time Hiking 7 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 20.7
Interest Seasonal Creek
Backpack Yes & Connecting
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Inaugural Calculation on Button Tap!
21  2017-02-25
Woodbury Coffee and Red Bacon with JF
20  2017-02-25
Woodbury Coffee and Red Bacon with JF
9  2008-03-15 survivalhike
Author survivalhike
author avatar Guides 1
Routes 0
Photos 9
Trips 0 map ( 0 miles )
Age 36 Male Gender
Location Phoenix, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Jan, Feb, Mar → Early
Seasons   Spring to Spring
Sun  6:13am - 6:22pm
Official Route
2 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
Hike From Hell
by survivalhike

Overview: FR-172B, Coffee Flat Trail #108, Red Tanks Trail #107, Hoolie Bacon Trail #111, JF #106

Hike: The trailhead picks up near a private ranch only a small distance from the fenced off drop area. Pass through the gate and follow the fence line which will gradually give way to the trail. Coffee Flat Trail slowly descends about 1000 feet over the next four miles. This portion of the hike is very enjoyable and the miles pass quickly. In early March there was plenty of water in the creek along the way.

After the four mile descent, Red Tanks Trail picks up heading north. This trail is a hard scramble up a bolder choked canyon for the first couple miles, where all 1000 feet of elevation lost on Coffee Flat is gained back plus another 200 feet in only 2.5 miles. The next mile is a 500 foot descent to where Hoolie Bacon Trail and Red Tanks Trail meet. The Upper La Barge Box is to the west of this juncture continuing along Red Tanks, however we continued north on Hoolie Bacon.

Hoolie Bacon ascends another 600 feet in 2 miles, essentially coming over the top of one of the larger hills in the route north. Then after one more descent/ascent that was slightly easier, the trail descends for 3 miles with small ups and downs back to 3300 feet. The final few miles were very easy in comparison to Red Tanks Trail.

Coffee Flat and Hoolie Bacon are very enjoyable trails (Hoolie Bacon does have one section of excruciating up hill hiking that was really difficult with a 35 pound pack) However, Red Tanks is a real challenge all the way to the Box. (In the Box as well is also challenging from what I heard from other hikers) If you are in it for the views and not the challenge, avoid Red Tanks because it's more struggle and less scenery.

I never made it into the Box after hiking Red Tanks which is kind of like going to Disney Land and not riding any of the rides, because from what I'm told the scenery in the Box is well worth the effort. I found what looks like an easier route into the Box from the west side following The Dutchman Trail instead. We'll see how that turns out.

Water was flowing fairly well from several sources in March when I went. However it only runs after recent rainfall.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

This is a moderately difficult hike.

Gate Policy: If a gate is closed upon arrival, leave it closed after you go through. If it is open, leave it open. Leaving a closed gate open may put cattle in danger. Closing an open gate may cut them off from water. Please be respectful, leave gates as found.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2008-03-15 survivalhike
    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.

    Most recent Triplog Reviews
    Woodbury TH to Tortilla TH via Red Tanks
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Woodbury Coffee and Red Bacon with JF
    Most high clearance 2wd vehicles should be able to make the drive. Several water crossings. The only likely issue is for those timid with a gas pedal crossing Queen Creek.

    Woodbury Trail #114
    Hiked this to scratch if off a list.

    Coffee Flat Trail #108
    The cow patties get your attention when it's dry. It's a slice of heaven when the creeks are flowing. Really nice saguaros either way.

    Red Tanks #107
    Five years after our first hike on the eastern side we returned. It didn't ring a bell. A little rough. This trail has four distinct personalities: La Barge Creek, Upper La Barge Box, North of Red Tanks Divide, Red Tanks Canyon. I like 'em all. It's not a trail for flip flops and shorts, come prepared.

    Hoolie Bacon # 111
    The best part of this trail is Bacon in the name. Horse Ridge saddle is a fine lunch stop with great 360 views. 4143 is better, please keep that a secret.

    JF Trail #106
    I've jigsawed this in the past, mainly Tule to Peralta. I do not care for either end. The 2.3 mile middle segment from 4597 to Tortilla Pass is worthy. It has a Reavis spirit of intrigue that I find relaxes the mind.

    Bruce suggested JefF out-n-back. Meh... do I know you? He came back with this loop and it was game on! We had perfect temps with all the creeks in taper down flow. I didn't blink at 22+ miles. Boy howdy, 12 hours sucker punched my body.
    Hurts so good, great hike!

    carried 3.5 quarts, consumed 2.5

    a few sprigs of paintbrush was the main attraction, several dozen blue dicks scattered throughout our loop, two poppies... yeah not much

    lots of wiry lotus, which is like getting excited over dollar store cookies
    Woodbury TH to Tortilla TH via Red Tanks
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Woodbury Coffee and Red Bacon with JF
    The drive in on 172/172A was uneventful. Queen Creek had a decent flow, but nothing a vehicle that would be driving these roads couldn't handle. Close to our TH, we saw a large Ford Transit panel van coming down 172A.

    Woodbury Trail #114
    There was one truck at the TH when we got there.
    This trail down to the Woodbury TH appears to be and old road.
    Probably a one and done

    Coffee Flat Trail #108
    This eastern stretch of the Coffee Flat Trail to Red Tanks was new for me. It was an easy stroll through Fraser Canyon. Very pleasant with the green and water everywhere. This would make a nice loop with other canyons in the area.

    Red Tanks #107
    I'd done this section before but did not remember much of it. It's quite scenic with the views of the surrounding areas and all the flowing water.

    Hoolie Bacon # 111
    Hoolie Bacon for me, is just a way to get to other places in the Supes. We had lunch at Horse Saddle and it did have some great views. The only hikers we saw all day, were at this saddle. One dayhiker, one backpacker and us just happened to all meet at the same time there. The hike down from Horse Saddle to the North is steep, rough and loose. Once down in the lower sections the trail is much nicer. You easily cross the flowing Tortilla Creek numerous times.

    JF Trail #106
    The northwestern portions of this trail is just OK. There are BIG views of the surrounding areas that help a bunch.
    The trail finally starts to get interesting in the mid section around unnamed Peak 4597. [ photo ] . It seemed to take forever to get to Tortilla Pass. Dropping down JF from Tortilla Pass, there is also some steep, loose washed out areas. Towards the bottom we hit sunset and donned our headlamps.

    The 1.2 mile 500'+ climb out on Woodbury to the truck, could not end quick enough.
    It was a full day in the Supes.
    You couldn't ask for better hiking weather.

    With this this loop I'm getting closer to hitting all the trails in the Supes (37 of 39 done).
    I Just have the 2 shortest left, with just 1.1 Total miles to go!

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    High Clearance possible when dry

    To Woodbury Trailhead
    Take US 60 east out of Apache Junction. A couple miles past Florence Junction at MP214.2 turn north onto Queen Valley Road and drive for 1.6 miles. Turn right onto FR357 (Hewlett Station Road) and drive for 3.0 miles to signed FR172. Turn left onto FR172 and drive for 9.1 miles to the intersection of FR172A/172B. IF going to Rogers Trough TH/Parking, then turn right onto FR172A and drive 3.8 rough miles to the Rogers Trough TH; IF going to Woodbury TH, then turn left onto FR172B and drive 1.1 miles to the Woodbury TH/Parking.

    Notice This trailhead may or may not be accessible by sedan. The road is generally grated once a year. Opinions differ on what is and is not doable.

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 65.6 mi - about 1 hour 49 mins
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 98.9 mi - about 2 hours 39 mins
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 210 mi - about 3 hours 52 mins
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