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Peak 3937 - Mineral Mountain Quad, AZ

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Guide 5 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Globe > Superior SW
4 of 5 by 2
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Round Trip 2.5 miles
Trailhead Elevation 3,690 feet
Elevation Gain 247 feet
Accumulated Gain 900 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 7
Interest Off Trail Hiking & Peak
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23  2016-04-01
Peak 4202 - Mineral Mountain Quad
4  2016-04-01
Peak 4202 - Mineral Mountain Quad
20  2012-12-12
Ajax Peak 4356 - Mineral Mountains
16  2012-12-12 CannondaleKid
25  2012-07-09 CannondaleKid
Author CannondaleKid
author avatar Guides 43
Routes 137
Photos 20,503
Trips 1,903 map ( 15,629 miles )
Age 69 Male Gender
Location Mesa, AZ
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Preferred   Nov, Mar, Apr, Feb → 8 AM
Seasons   Winter to Spring
Sun  6:13am - 6:21pm
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1 Alternative
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Named place Nearby
Great views across to AZT#16!
by CannondaleKid

Peak 3937 is located in the Mineral Mountain Quadrangle, which is just south of the US 60 between Florence Junction and Superior. Typical of peaks in the Mineral Mountain Quad, the drive to the trailhead is every bit as much of a challenge as the actual climb, and Ajax Benchmark is no different. Depending on the capability of your vehicle and how far you are willing to drive it, this hike can be as short as 2.5 miles to more than 10 miles round-trip.

From the parking area near the Arizona Trail #17 TH, begin the hike heading north along the FR976 about 500' until you meet the AZT#17, then turn left onto AZT#17 and follow it .2 mile where you will turn right onto an old jeep trail. The trail will descend to the bottom of the drainage before climbing steeply up the other side. At some points you may be climbing up the ancient 'road' on all fours to keep from sliding back down. (Just think of trying to drive up here... some ATV's have not too long ago. I know my Sammurai could if it HAD to, but I would only attempt it if it was an emergency.)

Once you reach the saddle, there is no specific trail to the summit of Peak 3937 so just head up the slope to your left. The climb is not very steep here and the vegetation is spread out enough that you can pretty much choose whatever route you wish. At the summit you will find a small rock cairn with a summit log. If all you wanted to do was bag the summit, you can head back for a hike of barely 1.5 miles, but now that you are here, don't pass up the best views, which you will experience only if you walk along the ridge as far as you can to the south. The views I encountered are some of the best I've experienced in the whole Mineral Mountain Quadrangle. Well worth the long rough drive! To the east you can see a good chunk of AZT#16 as it traverses across the slopes. To the west you have a good view of the Martinez Mine area including the huge cave and the oasis of trees by the old houses. Since there really isn't any other way to return to the trail head without a long detour and/or using very good climbing skills, return roughly along the same route.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

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2012-07-10 CannondaleKid
    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
    Peak 3937 - Mineral Mountain Quad
    rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5
    Yes, I'm a bit slow getting this posted... I've been working on Tracey's outside honey-do list, hoping to check everything off before it gets too hot. I don't mind hiking in the heat, but work... not so much.
    Jason's triplog pretty well covered the high points of the hike so all I have to add is my agreement it was a fun day hiking with a new HAZ hiking partner.

    RE: BearSafe water cache at the AZT#17 TH... Don't rely on it!
    Even if you cache your own water and mark it for your own use, it very well may be empty when you arrive.
    Oh yeah, if you empty a bottle, PLEASE crush it and take it with you!
    Peak 3937 - Mineral Mountain Quad
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    A combo climb of Peak 3937 which was easy, and Peak 4202 which was pretty dang hard. The latter felt like real mountaineering. I had only one moment of doubt, the descent on Pk 4202 which required some serious Class 3 down climbing. There's also a pretty nasty chute that leads to the crux and toward the final summit push. I was OK climbing it but descending was a little hairy.

    I made the trip with Cannondale Kid who was a GREAT hiking/climbing partner. His 4x4 skills are amazing. Surprisingly some parts which scare others in the Jeep, didn't even phase me a bit.

    We cached some water in a bear vault along the Arizona Trail.

    We met a AZT thru-hiker at the water cache area and that was pretty cool.

    All in all, an amazing day!!!

    Can't wait to get back out into this area again for more adventures.
    Peak 3937 - Mineral Mountain Quad
    rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5
    Today I had five items on my to-do list:
    1. Drop off a 12 gallon public-use water cache near the start of AZT Passage #17
    2. Reach the summit of Ajax Benchmark (I failed the previous attempt in July)
    3. Reach the summit of Peak 4202 (I failed the previous attempt in July)
    4. Follow the ridge along Peak 3937 (This as a great viewpoint to shoot photos and a video of Nick as he completes his last leg of the Arizona Trail from aross the canyon)
    5. Provide Nick with a ride back to his vehicle in Kelvin.

    #1 was easy, well it was after the rough drive to get that far.

    #2 & #3 may both have been failed attempts again if it weren't for fearless JJ. Although I did not follow his first route up either peak, thanks to his recons I managed to bag both. Ajax was definitely a scary one, even following my 'easier' route.
    After finding the worst way up the western approach of Peak 4202, JJ sought a better route because he did NOT want to descend the same way. Meanwhile I'm working on my PB&J lunch down below. Just when I was beginning to wonder if he fell off the other side he pops up right beside me, having descended by a route that was almost a walk-in-the-park from the east. Great work JJ! And now I benefited from his due diligence.

    #4 was pretty easy although nothing near as easy as it was for JJ. By now this 62 year-old body ached from head to toe trying to keep up with the 45 year-old hiking machine so I dragged up the rear. But once on the ridge the view across to the AZT was awesome. And wait... what do you see? Why, it's Nick cruising along the slope across the canyon. So I zoomed in 50x for a few photos and video as he met up with a mountain biker heading in the opposite direction.
    Nick said later the biker told Nick he had stared the pumpkin out of him. And these even after JJ yelled across the canyon telling Nick to watch out for the biker.

    #5 was easy enough for me and JJ but I'm not sure Nick felt that way... in fact he felt, well, like :sk: So JJ dug under the front seat, found the roll of TP inside a large ziploc bag that I always have along for emergencies like this and passed it forward to Nick. As much as I tried to make the ride a bit more palatable, it just wasn't happening. So I began to think...
    Would it be better if I drove slower to lessen the agony?
    Would it be better to go faster and shorten the duration of the agony?
    But I never figured out which was better and just took it as it came.
    In the end, I hear you Nick... having had terrible bouts of car-sickness when I was young I would never trivialize the effects it can have.

    So overall I had a very satisfying day and what makes it even better a day later... I have not one ache or pain at all! I guess that means I've got to keep working my pumpkin off to fend off old-age. Yeah, RIGHT!!! Don't I wish!

    Oh yeah... last thing... this hike of Ajax, Peak 4202 and Peak 3937 could very aptly be named the Awesome Ajax Trifecta Loop due to the three peaks as well as the awesome scenery that is not to be missed.

    I'll post the Peak 4202 and Peak 3937 photos separately but be sure to check out the 3937 photos to see Nick as he nears the end of the passage.
    Peak 3937 - Mineral Mountain Quad
    rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5
    For the first time in months (since I started bagging multiple peaks a day) I began the day with the toughest one, so after my aborted Ajax summit attempt (close, but no cigar) I took a short PB&J/Gatorade break, refilled my CamelBak and set out on the easy hike of the day. Easy compared to Ajax, that is.

    To begin with I walked along the first .1 mile of AZT passage #17 to the intersection with the old jeep trail, which happens to be the same spot where the end of passage #16 meets the beginning of passage #17. From that point I descended the very steep old jeep trail (now tough even for ATV's) to the bottom of the drainage before ascending the other side. Although at road at one time, now it was so steep and loose that even crawling on all fours was a challenge. But a few hundred feet of that then I could walk up to the saddle just north of Peak 3937.

    From the saddle the slope is pretty gentle so walking upright worked well. With the small amount of brush route-finding is as simple as wherever you want to go, as long as you are heading south toward the summit. Closer to the top there are a few spots to climb up some rocky areas, although detouring around was an option as well.

    Once at the summit I found a rock cairn that was large enough to hold a summit log, but alas there was none. So... just happening to have a container with paper and a sharp pencil inside, I made my entry and placed the new summit log inside the cairn.

    Since the summit was on the north end of a long ridge, I began my hike to the far southern end of the ridgeline. Wow! Speaking of awesome views... this was something! Looking across the canyon to the east one could see the Arizona Trail passage #16 traversing the length of the slopes. As I continued south along the ridge the views to the west and south were constantly changing, providing a glimpse of wide variety of geology. It was the best variety of scenery I'd seen in such a short and relatively easy hike in a long time. I'm definitely going to bring Tracey out here when it's not 109 degrees like it was today. Me? I'm crazy enough to return no matter what the weather is.

    On my return trip along the ridge I wandered a bit in hopes of finding more unique stuff like the giant centipede skeleton I found on the way to the summit but alas, I found no more. Oh well, now it's just the steep walk/slide/crawl down the drainage and back up to the AZT 16/17 connection and I'm back to the trail head.

    A short break for more sustenance and it's time for the very rough, slow drive back out. I averaged a whopping 4 mph for the first few miles. I got every bit as much a work out on the drive as the two hikes, but that's part of the fun.

    I posted 25 photos on HAZ with the full set of 36 photos here:

    I posted a 2-minute 30-second video here:
    It includes the view of AZT#16 as it traverses the slope across the canyon as well as a 360-degree panorama from the south end of the ridge of Peak 3937.

    Permit $$
    AZ State Land Recreational Permits are available for an individual ($15.00), or a family limited to two adults and children under the age of 18 ($20.00).

    Land Parcel Map

    Map Drive
    Strictly 4x4

    To hike
    Take the US 60 east toward Globe, continuing about 3.5 miles east of Florence Junction to the turn-off onto the dirt North Mineral Mountain Road. You will be crossing Arizona Trust Land so be sure to have secured your annual permit. Heading south from the US 60 you will continue on N Mineral Mtn Rd to the junction with Ajax Mine Trail (road) at about 7 miles. (Note, there will be other junctions prior to this point so I'd recommend you download the GPS route for the drive.) Continue east on Ajax Mine Trail for about 5.2 miles to N33.20716 W111.15008. This is the junction where Ajax Mine Trail, Telegraph Canyon Road (SW from Superior) and Forest Road 976 meet at N33.20699 W111.15022. Follow FR 976 3.2 miles to the trailhead, which is within .1 mile of the AZT #17 TH (The end of #16 and start of #17). I'd suggest following the GPS route I posted of the drive from the US60 to the TH.

    [ALTERNATE Eastern Approach] NOTE: I recommend this approach ONLY if you are coming from Superior or points east because although you will save 5.5 miles off-road. However, from the west you'll add 11 miles on the US60 and thus add 5+ miles to the total drive, plus the last 4 miles to FR 976 on Telegraph Canyon Road is MUCH rougher! To follow this approach, turn south on Mary Street from the US60 (west end of Superior) at N33.28540 W111.11757. Follow Mary St to Golf Course Rd, turning right immediately after the Fire Station. About two miles out (shortly after it becomes a dirt road) turn right onto Forest Road 4, which is Telegraph Canyon road. Follow FR4 to FR976 at N33.20699 W111.15022. Follow FR 976 3.2 miles to the trailhead.
    page created by CannondaleKid on Jul 10 2012 8:48 am
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