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Superstition Wilderness - Scenic 4WD Loop, AZ

Guide 8 Triplogs  0 Topics
  4.7 of 5 
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Difficulty 1 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Lasso-Loop 48.6 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,982 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 5 to 6.5
Interest Historic, Seasonal Waterfall & Seasonal Creek
Backpack Yes & Possibly Connect
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29  2017-03-04 cw50must
24  2015-04-03 snakemarks
4  2013-11-16 ASUAviator
20  2012-05-27 ASUAviator
12  2012-02-23
Montana Mountain
32  2011-12-23 Grasshopper
59  2011-12-23 tibber
Author Grasshopper
author avatar Guides 47
Routes 486
Photos 8,946
Trips 550 map ( 5,407 miles )
Age 76 Male Gender
Location Scottsdale, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Apr, Nov, Mar, Oct → 8 AM
Seasons   Early Autumn to Late Spring
Sun  6:09am - 6:32pm
Official Route
1 Alternative
Historic Fire Perimetersacres
🔥 Peachville 200522.7 mi*
🔥 2021 Telegraph Fire266.7 mi**
🔥 2020 Sawtooth Fire24.7k
🔥 2019 Woodbury Fire123.8k
🔥 2011 Picket Fire9.0 mi*
🔥 2011 650 Fire3.1k
🔥 2005 Peachville Fire9k
🔥 2005 Peachville20.2 mi*
🔥 1979 Silverona Fire7.4 mi*
🔥 1975 Needle Fire4.9 mi*
🔥 View All over Official Route 🔥
*perimeter length in miles
**possible voids inflate figure

Warning the 2019 Woodbury Fire & 2020 Sawtooth Fire damaged a majority of the Superstition Wilderness.
.. Thoroughly All Inclusive ..
by Grasshopper

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Overview: With planned stops this full day driving loop which travels along or near the boundary of the eastern Superstition Wilderness passes by thirteen (13) hiking trailheads and begins and ends east of Florence Junction at the intersection of Highway 60 and Queen Valley Road. This scenic and historic four wheel drive/high clearance route begins at an elevation "low" of 1982 feet and travels to an elevation "high" of 5394 feet with only 1.6 miles of the total 48.6 miles on a paved surface via Queen Valley Road.

Warning: This multi-forest road loop route travels on many varied road conditions depending on time of year and seasonal road maintenance. For safety reasons this 48.6 mile loop route should only be considered with an experienced off road driver who is driving a 4WD, high clearance vehicle with upgraded LT type rated tires. Also, in order to locate the many hiking trailhead locations along this route as well as to correctly navigate the many forest road turns along this driving route, it is highly recommended that the "official" GPS Driving Route dated 12/23/11 (posted to this description) along with its twenty-one (21) reference waypoints be downloaded and followed. Obviously, planned driving route stops are optional but understanding and being able to correctly navigate this driving route is important.

History: This scenic driving loop passes by old ranching homesteads- some still operational and considered private property as posted. One of the more interesting late 1800's mining/ranching homesteads available to visit and included in this driving loop GPS Route tour is the Wood Camp Cabin site located on a short unmarked 4WD access road off of FR650. It is highly recommended to plan a stop here to view the interesting and still standing (as of this writing) old stone cabin. Then a short walk down to the Wood Camp Canyon Creek bed area to see the old water well location along with a deep mining shaft (adit) which is located across the creek bed.

Drive: Follow the "official" 12/23/11 posted GPS Route. This 48.6 mile driving route, recommended to be driven in a "clockwise" loop direction, covers many scenic square miles within the Tonto National Forest - eastern Superstition Wilderness area including varied desert flora and geology.

From author's 12/23/11 trip log: I had often thought that this scenic eastern Superstition Wilderness 4WD loop trip would make an excellent day outing for family and/or out of state visitors who are not into hiking but would rather enjoy a longer back-country day driving trip with varied flora, geology, amAZing near and long distance views, and with ranching/mining history. I am now happy to report that for the right situation it would!

I would highly recommend those more adventurous with a good, stock, high clearance 4WD vehicle with LT type rated tires to strongly consider this one. It's a winner!

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

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2011-12-27 Grasshopper
    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
    Strictly 4x4

    To 4x4 trip
    From the Phoenix area: Take Hwy 60 East past Florence Junction (Hwy 60/Hwy 79) to Milepost 214.2; Turn left here onto signed and paved Queen Valley Road which is where this scenic multi-mile 4WD loop begins and ends; It is recommended to download and follow the "official" 12/23/11 GPS Route (with its 21 reference waypoints) posted to this description.
    page created by Grasshopper on Dec 27 2011 2:25 pm
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