Good to be new
by Dartmoor Hiker
This hike incorporates the new Bees Knees trail in area 620 of South Mountain. This is one of the two new trails built in 2010.
The route is relatively easy to follow as it is all well made paths, particularly the new Bees Knees trail which is the first part of the hike.
To start the hike I followed the directions in an AZ Central article. I simply went down the gravel road past the yellow end of road sign. After about 1000 feet turn right up a wash and after another 1000 feet you will come to cairn on the west side of the wash showing the start of the trail. You can cut out this first part of the hike by walking up 19th Avenue and crossing the wash at that point.
The first part of the trail is fairly level and by keeping left at each fork you will start going up the Bees Knees trail as it traverses the ridge you can see to the north. The Bees Knees trail goes on for about 3 miles when you bear left at another fork to go up the steepish Kebo Trail.
The Kebo trail links up with the National trail after about 0.5 miles and when you get the National trail bear right going north on the National trail.
Follow the National trail for about 2 miles and before you get to Goat Hill keep an eye out for a trail on the right hand side going down. This is the Mine Drop trail. This gets quite steep in places and the ground is loose so take it slow and easy. Once you get the bottom just follow the cairns in to a big wash and follow this wash down until you reach the beginning of the Bees Knee trail and get pack to the trail head.
Note - an easier route round might be to do this in reverse and go up the Mine Drop trail.
2011-01-02 Dartmoor Hiker
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.