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Butterfield Trail - Estrella Mtn RP, AZ

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Guide 66 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Phoenix > Phoenix SW
2.6 of 5 by 7
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Difficulty 1 of 5
Distance One Way 2.25 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,001 feet
Elevation Gain 360 feet
Accumulated Gain 389 feet
Kokopelli Seeds 3.55
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Inaugural Calculation on Button Tap!
10  2019-01-13
Homestead Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
9  2018-10-21
Desert Rose Trail
13  2018-04-01
Gadsden Trail-Toothaker Trail Loop
9  2018-02-25
Butterfield / Pedersen / Coldwater Loop
15  2018-01-19
Butterfield / Pedersen / Coldwater Loop
59  2017-12-28
MT - Guadalupe to Trilby
8  2017-12-17
Gadsden Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
7  2017-10-22
Quail Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
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
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Preferred   Mar, Nov, Feb, Dec
Sun  6:12am - 6:37pm
Official Route
13 Alternative
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby

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  • Estrella Baseline 2013 Map
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    Estrella Baseline 2013 Map
  • Estrella 2016 Trail Map
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    Estrella 2016 Trail Map
  • Estrella 2016 Park Overview Map
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    Estrella 2016 Park Overview Map

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

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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
Butterfield Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
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The last time I hiked in Estrella Mountain Regional Park was six years ago. Other than Gadsden Trail being miles of deep, sandy, wash, Estrella’s trails were very mellow. Large mileage is available without doing an out & back, which I always try to avoid.

In 2011, took Gadsden Trail from Corgett Wash to Coldwater Trail. This time I did all of Pedersen Trail. (Three Es in the correct spelling.)

I ate breakfast at the Waffle House on Dysart, but still got to the trailhead before sunrise, which was typically Arizona awesome.

Throughout my hike, there were directional signs for a trail running ultramarathon. (The longer distances did five laps of this loop.) It made me think of “Signs”, by Five Man Electrical Band.

From Gadsden Trail, the stock cars at Phoenix International Raceway, five miles away, were clearly audible. And that was only one or two cars: Imagine if there were 43!

Pederson, south of Gadsden, has a TON of cholla, mostly teddy bear, though I also spotted some buckhorn. Six years ago, the cholla actually blocked the trail at points; now it is clear, except for the odd fallen ball.

After a long break at the far southeast corner of Pedersen -- 3 bar Verizon reception -- I continued west on Pedersen. Or just off it, in the desert, as the jeep trail was deep sand. I found one saguaro that was leaking so much sap it had a puddle at its base. Pretty cool.

At "155th Avenue" -- that is its real name -- I turned north, still on Pedersen. A mile up, I thought I saw a trailer, but it turned out to be large tent full of tables, chairs, cots, Coleman stoves, and two liter bottles of soda for the trail runners. Unfortunately, no beer. I took advantage of the shade, for my second break.

Just north of Corgett Wash, I could see I-10 against the White Tank Mountains.

Still on Pedersen, just before the intersection with Toothaker Trail, there is an interesting out crop of white rocks. (Smaller white rocks are scattered all over the park.)

Lots of small planes overhead, taking off from and landing at Goodyear Airport, which is visible from the west flank of Knobb Hill on Coldwater Trail.

The trail runners had another support tent at the corral. While the day started out cool & breezy, it had become warm & sunny, so I took a short break in the shade. I only had a mile to go, but I earned it.

In 2011, I said this was a really boring loop. This time, it was not so bad. Mostly, I did it for the miles. I know it's not a lot for many folks on here, but I'm trying to get 100 miles for the month. :)

Hike Video: [ youtube video ]
Butterfield Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
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This was a tale of four trails. The day started out overcast, drizzled, and then the sun broke out to complete what felt like a crisp spring day. Yup, and that's an accurate metaphor for the day's work. To break it up (all mtb):

Rainbow Valley: Doubletrack, but gradual rocky inclines. Nice lines along the ridge on the south side of the Estrellas in the mid-section. Trail maintenance declined throughout. A surprisingly exhausting ride, although I like to think endeavoring this journey after a face full of Indian buffet didn't help either;). (I thought this was going to be the most difficult of the legs too.)

Toothache: For only 1.4m, this seemed a while. Likely because it was majority climb with loose rock - this was both a toothache and headache, and ended up disembarking several times over some rough climbs.

Gadsden: If I could turn back time today, I'd use my power to hang a right onto Butterfield and forego this detour. This was terrible on two wheels - a several mile march through sand deposits in a deep wash, then followed by a series of climbs and falls in and out of said washes. Biking through quicksand - not what I was expecting, nor hoped for. Updated trail description would be big plus to save others the same frustration.

Butterfield: Nice finish a maintained trail and rollers to bring it home.
Butterfield Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
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Hot morning for a trail run but thats life. Went out with Trevor. Legs are starting to come back. Was getting pretty hot by the end but had fun. Posted a picture on Twitter then got a message from an AP reporter asking me to call her. I did and she asked a few questions about running in the heat. Looks like she is doing an article on Phoenix heat today so it will be interesting to see if I am quoted.
Butterfield Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
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Nice run this morning going up Butterfield, around the middle, down Rainbow Valley and back over past the corral. I did see one other guy running way out there about 6 miles and thought to myself, what kind of weirdo is out running at 6 am in the middle of nowhere on a holiday, then realized that was what I was doing (and do regularly). Clearly I have a lot of issues.
Butterfield Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
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Coldwater Rumble 52K
Ran in the Coldwater Rumble 52K. Great weather with temps. Aravapia Running does a great job putting on races. Did the first 20.5 mile loop in 3:39 which I felt good about. Took about 10 minutes at the turn around then went back out for the shorter loop. Finished in 6:37 which was good for 24th place out of 81 runners. Got past by a few people the last couple miles as I was starting to slow down. Felt good through 28 miles but the last 5 were a lot of work. Fun and painful day.
Butterfield Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
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Happy new year trail run with Dave W. I will be first place in mileage for probably an hour before the high mileage people report! Went Quail>Saddle>Toothaker>Dysart>Butterfield>Gadsden>Coldwater>Dysart>Rainbow Valley>Quail . Did a few extra spots on junctions and bottom to get to the 13.1.

Happy new year to everyone and hope this will be best year for all.
Butterfield Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
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Went out with Trevor and did the entire 20 mile loop identical to the Coldwater Rumble coming up. Did well but ankle was sore at the end which will make going back out for a 12 mile loop a challenge. Temps cool 28 at start and sure is was below 25 when we were on Homestead and the sun was coming up. Overall good day because I know I can finish the 32 miles at the race now but it will be a challange with a sore ankle.
Butterfield Trail - Estrella Mtn RP
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Toothaker trail out to Rainbow Valley trail was very up and down through small washes with one big wash. The RVT immediately ascended a few hundred feet but leveled off nicely for a good view of the city in the distance. Descended back down hill and got fairly flat, then met with the Dysart trail. Since the trail had leveled off, I elected to take Dysart and jog from there. Good workout with some ups and downs, then took it to the T with Butterfield Trail. From there back to the trailhead was very hilly but then very flat. Ran that whole length for a good finish to my workout.

I only ever saw one other person on the trails, out on a beautiful 80 degree day, so if you're okay paying the $6 entry fee to the park I recommend it. There were a lot of horses and a carriage ride once I approached the arena. There were also a lot of flies on the trail but they never land on you or bother you much.

Permit $$
Maricopa Regional Parks - Fees more info

$7 per vehicle,$85 annual or trade your first born for the life pass

$2 walk, bike or horse ride into park

Map Drive
Paved - Car Okay

To hike
page created by joebartels on May 04 2011 12:16 pm
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