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Pinto Peak Trail #213, AZ

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10 8 0
Guide 8 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Globe > Queen V NE
2.8 of 5 by 4
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Difficulty 3 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance One Way 4.81 miles
Trailhead Elevation 3,265 feet
Elevation Gain 1,157 feet
Accumulated Gain 1,283 feet
Kokopelli Seeds 9.09
Interest Off Trail Hiking, Seasonal Creek & Perennial Creek
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Inaugural Calculation on Button Tap!
25  2018-04-14
Wildcat - Pinto - Campaign Loop
12  2018-04-14
Wildcat - Pinto - Campaign Loop
6  2017-11-25
Black Mountain - Eastern Superstition Mtns
5  2017-11-25
Black Mountain - Eastern Superstition Mtns
16  2014-12-06
Wildcat Canyon - Tonto NF
33  2014-09-27
Reavis Ranch via Miles TH
62  2013-11-28
Cuff Button Trail #276
23  2013-06-21
Campaign Trail #256
Page 1,  2
Author HAZ_Hikebot
author avatar Guides 16,882
Routes 16,052
Photos 24
Trips 1 map ( 6 miles )
Age 22 Male Gender
Location TrailDEX, HAZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Mar, Nov, Feb, Jan
Sun  6:11am - 6:22pm
Official Route
6 Alternative
Flora Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby

Author Full Detail Guide
Very remote and interesting eastern Superstition Wilderness "connector" Trail #213 hike beginning on a 2.5 mile hike section of Upper Horrell Creek then connecting (at the historic Mormon Corral) onto the remaining 2.31 mile hike section of decommissioned Pinto Peak Trail #213 and ending at an inner section of Campaign Trail #256.

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    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.

    Most recent Triplog Reviews
    Pinto Peak Trail #213
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    Wildcat - Pinto - Campaign Loop
    Bruce gleaned this 3 county route from Lee stating that he'd hiked it 3 times. He studied up on it too. It was cool to have a tour guide.

    Apparently I liked Wildcat a smidge more than the three timer. The old Pinto #213 leg was interesting. The catclaw ending robbed brownie points. Pants sufficed. Nowhere near the top ten list of bad catclaw, Wave Cavers would probably consider it a nightmare.

    Campaign to Fireline is in the best shape I recall. We lunched under the pines near the junction. Up to the saddle SW of Pinto Peak is brushy. Down to West Pinto Creek is steep but the views are top notch.

    Enjoyed #212 just shy of Oak Flat to square one more than anticipated.

    tenth mile stretch with medium to small poppies was an unexpected treat being so dry this year
    Pinto Peak Trail #213
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Wildcat - Pinto - Campaign Loop
    Wildcat Canyon has been on my radar for quite some time. The Miles Trailhead is just a tad over 100 miles from my house, so I like to make it worth the trip and find some other new areas to hit while out there. The decommissioned Pinto Peak #213 fit the bill for a loop. FOTG had already done this loop a few times so I didn't even need to draw up a track.

    A 7:15a 40ish degree start started us past the ranch building and a guy curled up next to a fire.

    Wildcat Canyon Trail
    To the first saddle, the trail is pretty straight forward. From this saddle, down to the wash area has a few areas that are thin and prickly, but quite doable. In the canyon travel is easy. we missed one of the bypasses that horse travel took, leaving the creek, when we dealt with getting around an exploring bovine. Staying in the creek bed was NP.

    On the Cuff Button #276 for 2.5 miles is mainly old FR 305.

    Decommissioned Pinto Peak Trail #213 follows a 2 track to the Wilderness boundary. It's an easy walk through some interesting territory. The Mormon Corral had all sorts of water. There were 3 full troughs and a 200-300 gallon metal tank that was 2/3rds full. After the Wilderness boundary,the trail gets thinner in some spots, but does come back if you have the GPS track. As FOTG mentioned the only catclaw section, is in the last 1/2 mile or so before reaching Campaign.

    The Campaign Trail #256 is cleared and 6' wide in spots all the way south to the Fireline trail. After here, there is less than a mile section that needs some love. The rest of the trail down to West Pinto, is decent with some nice views, We even saw some poppies.

    On the roller coaster of the West Pinto #212, just 2.5 miles back to the TH.

    Weather was just about perfect on this one.

    Saw some small poppies, lupine.
    Pinto Peak Trail #213
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    I headed to the Eastern Supes with Wally today to bag a random peak. Wally was just about the only person I knew, who might be interested in seeing what was on top of Black Mountain, so I asked him about a month, or so ago about a potential summit and today was the day.

    We expected a pretty rough and rugged ascent and it ended up being pretty mild for a remote Eastern Supes Peak (although it should be noted the summit lies a stone's throw outside of the wilderness boundary). After some boulder hopping we left the obvious drainage leading up Black's back northwest side, from there it was a series of game and perhaps old cattle trails to the summit. We found evidence of Indian Ruins and believe there is potential for more, however, we only found one actual site on top. After enjoying the summit, we decided to get creative and shot a beeline down towards Willow Spring and an old jeep road that would take us to the trailhead for the decommissioned Pinto Peak Trail, which we then took back to Campaign Trail to complete a nice little 12 mile loop. It was nice to get back to an area in the Supes I know a little about and nice to cover some ground that has probably not seen too many hikers, or people period for that matter. Also very nice to get back out with @wallyfrack it had been a long time.

    Some color in Campaign Creek, but it is going fast
    Pinto Peak Trail #213
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    I was just trying to be creative with an Eastern Supes loop and this was what I came up with. I went in Miles TH then took the Wildcat Canyon route to Cuff Button, some road walking then reentering the Supes via the decommissioned Pinto Peak Trail to Campaign Trail over the divide back down to W. Pinto Trail and the TH.

    I finally completed the Wildcat Canyon route to Cuff Button a hike that can be found in the Eastern edition of the Carlson and Stewart guide and a hike that was recently completed by hikerdw. In fact, he shared his route with me, something I was missing on my first attempt. I did get to the W. Gate the first time, but was unsure of route from there. This time it was pretty straight forward and once you hit Wildcat Canyon the trail becomes a highway by Eastern Supes standards, it might be better than many of the "maintained" trails in that area. The trail through Wildcat Canyon appears to get a lot of hunter traffic or ranching traffic, either way someone has kept the trail pretty clear and it has a heavy tread in most spots. It was probably the highlight of the day too bad it was only a little over three of my miles for the day.

    I took the decommissioned Pinto Peak Trail past Mormon Corral and the now pretty much defunct Mountain Spring which seems to have fallen victim to someone's poor repair or improvement project. The person who had a camera trap there for six months last year is most likely responsible I assume. Regardless, the once relatively robust and reliable spring is now barely dripping.

    I kept a pretty leisurely pace most of the day and limited my poking around for rock piles. Cup came along on this one and did not want to beat her up as bad as I did on my Tule loop, but she did just fine, no issues with the longer distance or rougher trails. We did not take many breaks due to the fact that we never really saw the sun until it set, if that makes sense. Tons of bear scat and other indicators to hint that they are really active in the wooded pine sections of upper Campaign. Saw a large pack of coati in Wildcat Canyon and several deer, no shortage of water out there, but a little less then I anticipated. I am going to clean up route through Wildcat Canyon and post to public, definitely worth the trip, nice little canyon.
    Pinto Peak Trail #213
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    This was a three day loop in a lesser traveled area of the Supes. I started at Cuff Button trail,to Spencer Spring Trail to the Arizona Trail, the crosscut to Roger's Trough, then W. Pinto to Campaign Trail then the decommissioned Pinto Peak Trail back to the Cuff Button TH.

    Just getting to the Cuff Button trail head is a task in itself that involves navigating an ant-trail network of roads after you pass the turnoff for Miles TH. I do have that route on GPS if anyone ever gets the itch to do Cuff Button. Cuff Button started off like a breeze the official route I downloaded from HAZ was tracking well and the trail had just received some serious maintenance. However, after passing Cuff Button's most notable attraction, the corral at the northern end of the trail, the trail got increasingly more difficult, to the point that it became a bushwhack and many places. Although, after the initial steep climb,the trail got much easier to follow, and the tread was pretty heavy in spots, from its days as an old road. I passed a couple of prehistoric sites, several springs in disrepair, and a few corrals. Honestly, Cuff Button went much smoother than I thought it would, however, I made a lot of extra work for myself, after getting off trail while coming down Oak Flat, I went on an off-trail adventure fueled by stubbornness, spotting a spring box, and simply losing the trail for a minute. That off-trail excursion took a lot out of the dogs and myself, so I decided I would continue down Spencer Spring until I got tired, knowing there was no way I was going to hike the entire trail, around 4 I found a spot just before you start making your climb out of the Spencer Creek drainage. This trail obviously does not get that much use either, I had tons of firewood, a great spot and I had a huge fire, because it got cool in a hurry, camped at just over 4000 feet.

    Day 2

    Woke up to frozen over dog dishes, and frozen water. I broke camp and tried to dry out my condensation soaked tent as best as possible before hitting the trail. Was hiking again by 8 in the morning and feeling really good about Spencer Creek Trail, but I could not help but remember reading an HAZ trip-log that cursed the bushwhack of a final climb out of Spencer Creek. That HAZ member could not have been more spot on, the trail was more overgrown than Cuff Button in spots, harder to follow in the upper elevations, eroded, and steep in several spots. I was so relieved to hit FR 650, it made me laugh to myself, how I thought hiking this section of road to Roger's Trough would be the worst part of my hike earlier in the week. After Cuff Button and the southern end of Spencer Creek I embraced the road, and so did the dogs! I passed, or I should I say a convoy of 20 plus jeeps passed me, I briefly chatted with some car campers, hit the Roger's Trough crosscut (thanks Grasshopper) and made my way to Roger's Trough. I had an extended lunch and then started making my climb up W. Pinto. As I approached the pass on Iron Mountain, I notice two hikers literally just off-trail hiking up Iron Mountain. I yelled to them if they were looking for trail and they said yes, I guess they walked off somewhere near Roger's Spring, however, they were now on the opposite side of the major wash that cuts down Iron Mountain there, so I stood on trail near the pass, to give them a frame of reference and they made it to the trail. Anyone who has climbed that section of W. Pinto knows the work those two put in to almost climb that pass, completely off trail. They were actually headed the same way as me, so I ended up passing them a few times over the next couple of days. Although, at 1:30 and not even half way down W. Pinto I had to break the news to them that making it to Fire Line Trail was probably out of the question for them. I was actually doing well on time and already knew where I was camping, so I took a side trip and explored the old Silver Spur Cabin site, which had burnt several years ago. The side trip was worth it, just a half-mile jaunt south up the most obvious wash once you near the riparian area as you descend W. Pinto. Someone has built quite the shack out there, complete with a vanity and everything, it kind of gave me creeps so I made my way back to the W. Pinto trail and headed back down to the Miles/Oak Flat areas. I ran into the same hikers, they were looking for Campaign Trail and debating whether to go for Pinto Divide and Fire Line. I told them I would not attempt, but they were eager and fresh and they made their way down trail, while I hiked not far up Spencer Creek to a nice little camp site I had spotted the day before.

    Day 3

    All week I debated the best way to make a loop out of Cuff Button, I thought about walking the road back from Miles, but that would have been way too long, I also considered just taking Cuff Button back, but once was enough, so I came up with an alternative on day 2. I would take Campaign Trail past the intersection with Fire Line and take the old alignment of the original Pinto Peak Trail back to Mormon Corral and then just a short walk from there to Cuff Button TH. The Pinto divide went much better than last time, I ended up running into the same two hikers coming down the north side of Pinto Peak and heading down Campaign Creek. They only made it to the highest saddle the night before and stayed there, I guess it was a little cool, but they like it. Campaign Trail is a little bit overgrown in its southern sections, in particular, coming down from the divide can be a little bit of a bushwhack. Not many maps show the old Pinto Peak Trail (213) which use to go from its trail head near Mormon Corral all the way to W. Pinto. Most of it was renamed and became a part of Campaign Trail, however, the 2.5 miles stretch heading to Mormon Corral and the original Pinto Peak TH have been decommissioned. I took that stretch to get back to the Cuff Button TH and found it to be easy to follow, like, I have in the past. The trail is not much of a bushwhack, there is reliable water at Mountain Spring(and a trail camera now??, plus the tread is pretty easy to follow. The couple miles on the road to get to Cuff Button is actually a pretty scenic route through a nice little canyon area with trickling water, and there is almost certainly zero chance of running into a car, as it is a very rugged road, evident by the several rock cairns along the way to guide those not wishing to risk paint and worse damage to their vehicles.

    I made it to the car at about three, noticed a big HAZ in the sand in front of my car and wondered all the way until I got home, "who in their right mind would have also been at Cuff Button Trail Head, that trail sees like ten hikers a year!?" Then I got on HAZ and solved the mystery, working on that HAZ sticker :)

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    Strictly 4x4

    To Horrell Trailhead
    From Hwy60/FR287-Pinto Mine Road, continue thru the Pinto Mine area on FR287 continuing north on FR287 to the historic Horrell Ranch area at FR287/FR305. Turn left(west) onto 4WD only FR305 and proceed on this sometimes difficult to follow FR305 to the trailhead.

    Please Note: It is highly recommended to review, download, then upload in a GPS Receiver, the GPS Route Drive to THs for TR276 and TR213.

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) - 84.8 mi, 1 hour 44 mins ( add a good half hour to all times... slow road )
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) - 119 mi, 2 hours 30 mins
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) - 228 mi, 3 hours 46 mins
    page created by AZLOT69 on Dec 03 2010 8:29 am
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