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Meridian Washes, AZ

Guide 18 Triplogs  1 Active Topic
  0 of 5 
no permit
1 Active
239 18 0
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Difficulty 1 of 5
Distance Round Trip 0.5 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,921 feet
Elevation Gain 100 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 1-2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 1
Interest Off-Trail Hiking
Backpack Possible - Not Popular
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
4  2021-07-22 gummo
2  2020-11-07 gummo
2  2020-11-06 gummo
2  2020-10-11 gummo
2  2020-07-24 gummo
2  2020-06-14 gummo
2  2020-06-05 gummo
1  2020-05-23 gummo
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Author sventre
author avatar Guides 13
Routes 68
Photos 403
Trips 61 map ( 272 miles )
Age Male Gender
Location Mesa, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Feb, Jan, Dec, Nov → 6 AM
Seasons   Early Autumn to Early Summer
Sun  5:34am - 7:31pm
0 Alternative

Not a Hike, an Adventure
by sventre

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The weather forecast for this morning included scattered showers, high humidity and increasing temperatures. Seemed like a perfect opportunity to forego my planned hiking destination, save some gas and, instead, explore in the local "backyard". It had rained the night before; and, so the pre-dawn desert air was filled with the pungent fragrances that accompany the all-too-rare moisture. The stillness of the darkened trail was made even more obvious by the overcast skies yet to be awakened by the promise of a rising sun.

Having ventured out from the Meridian trailhead many times, I was comfortable without the benefit of a flashlight and only the extremely dim lighting afforded by the nearby civilization. Night vision quickly took focus and I proceeded out along the trail to Bulldog Saddle. By then it was nearly dawn and I decided to explore the washes below rather than tackle the rocky trail up to the saddle. I located a trail that descended about 15 to 20 feet into the "cracks" not ordinarily visible to the casual hiker along either the Pass Mountain or Bulldog Saddle trails and was quickly absorbed into a completely different environment. Here, below the level of the desert floor, was a world of broken granite walls, lush foliage and a maze of winding pathways. What may have otherwise been course and biting brush had become softened by the rains; and, pools of water flowed quietly through the eddies only recently created. Even the small sections of catclaw merely tugged at my clothing rather than tear through the skin. For the next 2 hours I wandered through the cracks and crevices, sometimes rising out of one and dropping into another. Though the skies threatened more rain, I could quickly exit the deepest of the washes in a moment as the walls provided numerous avenues of escape. The peaks were close by and so I was confident that the likelihood of flooded washes caused by rains far in the distance had been minimized.

I wouldn't recommend exploring these washes in the heat of the Arizona summer; but, on a lazy, early morning following a night of rain, it's a nearby place for peaceful co-existence and discovery of some of Nature's secrets. The Hike(?): I really wouldn't classify this as being a hike. Once you enter the washes, explore as long and as much as you wish. Access is from the Meridian Trailhead and can be made at any of a variety of locations along the trail to Bulldog Saddle, or even along the connector trail to Pass Mountain. The GPS "route" provided is merely a suggestion of one route from which to begin. I found an easy descent at 33.46946,- 111.58211, but pick one that suits you best. Becoming lost is not an option; at any place you can rise out from the lowest point and observe the water tank along Meridian Road and adjoining the trailhead.

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2010-09-22 sventre
    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 $$

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    From Mesa & US60 - Exit 193 Signal Butte Road. Turn left and go over the freeway. Go 1/2 mile north on Signal Butte to Southern. Turn right on Southern and go 1 mile east to Meridian. Turn left on Meridian and proceed north (toward mountains) approximately five miles to terminus of Meridian Road and trailhead parking area.
    page created by sventre on Sep 22 2010 8:19 am
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
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