register help
This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Dandrea Trail #285, AZ

293 32 1
Guide 32 Triplogs  1 Topic
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Prescott > Prescott S
2.5 of 5 by 11
clicktap icons for details
Difficulty 2.5 of 5
Distance One Way 2.85 miles
Trailhead Elevation 6,900 feet
Elevation Gain 659 feet
Accumulated Gain 719 feet
Kokopelli Seeds 5.25
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Will recalculate on button tap!
11  2019-06-15
Bradshaw Mountains Trifecta
20  2019-04-25
Bradshaw Mountains Trifecta
16  2019-02-07
Mount Union
17  2018-06-23
Mount Union
6  2018-05-12
Bradshaws: Davis Union Spruce
8  2018-01-14
Mount Union
5  2018-01-06 Peter_Medal
15  2017-10-22
Mount Union - Mount Davis Trail Run
Page 1,  2,  3,  4
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
Expand Map
Preferred   May, Oct, Sep, Apr
Sun  6:12am - 6:38pm
Official Route
19 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby

Likely In-Season!

Author Full Detail Guide

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.


    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 of 19 deeper Triplog Reviews
    Dandrea Trail #285
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Bradshaws: Davis Union Spruce
    I had a few loops drawn up in the Bradshaws and we decided to see how we were feeling as the day progressed. The trip up to Davis and Union was the first leg of the trip, and I was actually surprised that John welcomed us up on a windy day with extreme fire danger. He informed us we were the highest people in Yavapai County, and also mentioned something about the elevation. :sweat:

    I'm glad there's a tower here as it makes it possible to hit 8,000 feet on the second flight up. :)

    I do prefer the views from Davis though.

    Did you know: Mount Union was named during the civil war, and in response confederate supporters countered by naming the adjacent peak after President Davis. So there's that.

    Back down to Potato Patch where the headwaters of the Hassayampa was flowing to my surprise. A quick break at the truck and up Isabella. At this point, I opted for the shortest of the options on the day and took the old Transcendent Mine trail down to 307 before heading back up to the Spruce summit. To the surprise of nobody, the tower was not open to visitors.

    After a quick snack we headed back across the Spruce Mountain ridge and dropped back down to the car via Isabella. We saw surprisingly few people today. There has been a lot of thinning on both Davis and Spruce, but both are still littered with large slash piles that have yet to be burned. Still an improvement over last time.

    @tortoise_hiker I promise 9L was there.

    Side note: Don't speed through Mayer.
    Dandrea Trail #285
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
    Groom Creek-Mt Davis
    The Eagle treated me to a lite version of one of his classic multi-trail, multi-peak hikes, this one in the Bradshaws. The plan was to hit Spruce, Davis and Union utilizing the Groom Creek Loop, Isabella and Dandrea trails.

    We started at the Groom Creek trailhead and started the loop in a clockwise direction. On the way up, Bruce mentioned a shortcut that bypassed Spruce. I'd been to Spruce but not on the shortcut trail, so we lightened the already lite version further by bypassing Spruce, taking the Transcendent Mine shortcut noted in MEWhiteman's Isabella Loop description. The trail had some downfall and is steep, but was easy to follow. It shaved about a mile off the loop.

    Back on the Groom Creek loop trail we came across a flock (rafter) of wild turkeys: 4 hens and about a dozen chicks (poults). What a sight that was as they motored along the trail ahead of us before disappearing into some brush.

    We continued on, taking the Isabella trail down to the road, then through Potato Patch before picking up the Dandrea trail. The Dandrea trail was probably the least favorite part of this hike. It's an old road covered with ankle busters, but it gets you to the saddle between Davis and Union. We turned north at the saddle, opting to bag Davis first. Once on top, we looked for the ammo can that contained the summit register, but couldn't find it.

    On the way down from Davis, I told Bruce that I would bypass Union. I haven't hiked much lately ('cause I'm a "slacker") and we still had a long way to go. I took a nap at the saddle while The Eagle bagged Union and checked out the tower. We ate lunch when he returned and extended the break. Thunderheads started to blossom to the south as we enjoyed the serenity of the saddle. Rain was in the forecast. Time to get going.

    We headed back down Dandrea, back through Potato Patch and up Isabella. The Isabella trail is one of the best trails I've hiked in the Bradshaws. Moderately steep in spots, but easy walking through a mostly shaded pine forest.

    When we reached the Groom Creek Loop, we turned south and coasted the last five miles on good trails with a gentle descent. A great way to finish a long hike. Somewhere in the distance, the sound of drums could be heard. Bongos at first, then something like the drum corps of a high school marching band. They were pretty good.

    As we closed out the hike, storms were brewing all around us, but we were spared until the last mile or so when light rain brought the umbrellas out.

    Bruce, thank you again for the invite. I had a great time!
    Dandrea Trail #285
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrating optionrated 1
    Groom Creek-Davis-Union
    I woke up and read a text from Ray saying he woke up late and would be there in 15 minutes. My alarm never went off, I got ready in 15 minutes and was there 45 minutes late. Hopefully not an omen for the day.

    Temps were 70 at the start and 73 to finish, with the mid 60's in the middle. Cloudy most of the day, with some sun and got a light rain for 15 minutes at the end. Pretty lucky all-in-all with nastier weather all around us. Muggy was the theme for the day.

    We started clockwise on the Groom creek Loop #307. This is a steady climb and we decided to take the shortcut trail at the 2 mile mark to cut across to Isabella. It'd been 7 years since I'd been on this one. It's easy to follow, but since it's not an official trail, none of the dead fall is removed. No problems getting around it at all.

    Right at the Isabella Trail turn, Ray spotted a Rafter of 3 hens and a dozen or more poults. I don't think I'd seen poults before in the wild.

    Down the Isabella Trail #377 and the walk through Potato Patch, we tried to guess which house was Peter's.

    I've never cared much for the climb up the Dandrea #285. It's rocky and loose.

    At the saddle we made our turn to get to the off trail portion up to Mt Davis. I love the views up the top of the rocky outcropping. The Peak Register IS gone. It's not where it used to be and we checked other spots with no luck.

    Next I made my way over to Mt. Union to visit with the lookout, John and get some scoop on the Goodwin Fire. The fire never got any closer than 4.5 miles from the tower. He said a couple of Forest Service workers called it in and it was not visible to him for another 1/2 hour. You could see some scarring from up there where it crossed Big Bug Mesa, but the majority of the burn was farther east.
    He had some dispatch personnel come up in the tower while I was there, so I let them go about their business.

    We went back the way we came and then completed the Groom Creek loop. It'd been awhile since I'd be on this section. Quite enjoyable. We kicked up a small buck still in velvet to close out the hike.

    Enjoyable hike. Good to hike w/Ray again. Thanks for driving.
    Dandrea Trail #285
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Union Davis Loop via Yankee Doodle
    I put together this nearby valley loop above 7000' to try to beat the summer heat. My regular hiking crew joined me at 5am for the 90 minute drive up the I17 to 69, through Mayer and Breezy Pines. Chased a flock of turkeys, both young and old, up the road between Breezy Pines and 5 points until my hiking companions jumped out and shooshed them off the road. Once up to the 5 points intersection, take the hard right onto Big Bug Mesa road, trailhead is about a mile up the road on the left.

    There's a nice little parking/camping area at the Yankee Doodle #284 trail complete with a fire ring. A typical forest service carbonite sign marks the beginning of the trail. The Yankee Doodle and Dandrea trails are multi use; hiking, biking, horseback riding, motorcycle, and ATV. We would not see another soul on the trails today.

    Yankee Doodle trail quickly ascends the side of Mount Davis through an infinite number of switchbacks. The surrounding low brush affords little shade in the morning on this eastern slope. After about a mile tall trees provided some much needed relief from the already blazing sun.

    We took a side trip on Mount Davis trail to check out the views. Did I say trail? Yeah, there's no trail. There is a nice thick patch of knee high cat claw to get you started. Fortunately, it doesn't last very long and you find yourself wandering under a delightful canopy of pines until you get to a pile of rocks at the top. I searched around a bit for a summit register but didn't find one. There's great views over to Mount Union and up Walker Road to the north.

    Down off Davis and back on Yankee Doodle, it's a short walk to the 4 way Dandrea Trail intersection. There's a shady clearing with a log bench to relax on and pick the debris from the Davis excursion out of your boots. Just a little over 0.5 more miles up Yankee Doodle a side trail splits off to the right and takes you to the Mount Union Lookout Tower road. The side trip to the tower rewards you with 360 degree views and some interesting banter with a 20 year veteran of fire lookout service. After filling our packs with Smoky the Bear swag we retreated back to the main trail, slipping and sliding our way down to Forest Service road 261. Just across the road we found the Arizona Trail Riders dirt bike club doing a Yankee Doodle trail maintenance day with the Prescott National Forest. They were doing trail restoration on the section of Yankee Doodle between FS 261 and Senator Highway.

    We, however, would follow FS261 about 1 mile to its intersection with Dandrea Trail #285. Most of this road section is loose and rock with little shade. Dandrea gains about 400 feet in 0.6 miles to rendezvous back at the lovely intersection with Yankee Doodle. A sign at the beginning of Dandrea stated it was closed due to deadfall, however, it was clear all the way up to Yankee Doodle.

    It was hot, we were tired, and most importantly, there was talk of stopping in Rock Springs on the way back to Phoenix for some pie and ice cream. We made haste back down Yankee Doodle to the truck and fired up the AC. I couldn't believe to find that it was already 96 degrees at 11:00AM at 7100'!

    It felt an eternity until we pulled into the Rock Springs Cafe parking lot. Tip for any future diners, if there's a long line, you can sit at the bar and get full service, as we did, and be eating before you'd be seated waiting for a table.
    Dandrea Trail #285
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrating optionrated 1
    Spruce-Davis-Union-Tritle Shuttle
    Up at 4am I checked the radar and Prescott what getting nailed with a heavy thunderstorm.
    I knew it would be a humid one. Temps on the day ranged from 62 to 78. Not bad for a July.

    Ray was our shuttle commander today. He dropped us at the Groom Creek TH. Clockwise on the Groom Creek #307 up to Spruce Mountain, we stopped at the Fire Lookout. Red is gone and Suzie is back in the tower. All the windows were open and the hummingbirds were flying feeder to feeder through the tower.

    On to Isabella #377 and down to Potato Patch.

    Dandrea #285 is my least favorite in this loop. A group of hikers pointed out the best example I've seen of an Arrastra, which made this trail a plus this time.

    The off trail to Mount Davis is always a worthy track. Some really good views.
    Video from the Top of Mount Davis :next: ... HT8Y

    Next it was off to Mount Union to visit with John for a bit before lunch on the Helipad.

    The planned route had to be adjusted after we ran into some Private Property. This is the first time I'd taken FR52B to the top of Mount Tritle. A worthy route with some nice views. We searched for the Summit Register with zero luck.
    We meddled with the Peter Medal route off the north side. This route was a super highway for about half the way down. After that, not so much. Finally in the Hassayampa, travel was much easier.

    Our shuttle driver picked us up while walking on...Walker Road. Thanks Ray!
    Dandrea Trail #285
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
    Spruce - Davis - Union - Tritle Shuttle
    Bruce wanted to medal around Peter's neck of the woods. A morning thunderstorm swept through before our arrival. The forecast looked promising. It turned out to be about the best weather you can expect for July. Humid yet clouds kept the sun off us more than not along with some nice breezes.

    We hit the peaks in the order linked above. We've been many times and will likely return. Close to the Valley and a gem if you can dance around the storms which seem almost daily in July.

    Tritle and I were not the best of friends. We hiked the backroad up this time. What a difference. Lots of trees and I didn't feel like I was skirting deliverance. We started down a Peter route which to our surprise was a local trail through tall pines. Unfortunately it looked to be going towards FR79. So we off trailed through medium nonsense down to the Senator Mine. Nothing bad, just really wanted that local trail to roll east instead of west. The Hassayampa had more flow than I anticipated, maybe from the morning storm?

    Nice hike, thanks for the shuttle Ray!
    Dandrea Trail #285
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrating optionrated 1
    Dandrea - Mt Union - Yankee Doodle Loop
    Good times in the Bradshaws...

    A redo of a previous loop escaping the high temps of the Valley.

    FR67 on the way in was in great shape

    The sign for Camp Helaman [ photo ] has been removed. Not sure what's going on.

    We visited with John (19 years in the Mt Union Tower) for a bit.... and the highlight of the trip for me was finding out that RED from the Aztec Peak Lookout in the Sierra Anchas, is now manning the Spruce Mountain Lookout (Replacing Suzie)

    Time for a trip to visit Red
    Dandrea Trail #285
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
    Dandrea - Yankee Doodle - Senator Loop
    Hurling speed: The average moving speed, above which, I tend to hurl when hiking uphill at higher altitudes. That's what was going through my mind as we were approaching Mt Union, just below 8000 feet...just before I hurled. ](*,)

    The problem is I don't get enough oxygen at higher altitudes, causing me to breathe faster and faster to make up for the lack of it. The heavy breathing eventually brings on the symptoms of altitude sickness. Some people get headaches. I get nauseous. Prior acclimation works well for me, but I rarely have time for that. It's a drag because it really limits my hiking options during the warm months.

    In spite of my issues near the top, the hike itself was enjoyable, especially the company. Views from the summit and Yankee Doodle trail are awesome. Thick stands of pine highlight sections of this loop, providing shade and color for long stretches. Manzanita and alligator junipers provide variety. The route is a bit rough in sections from ATV and motorcycle traffic, which is allowed along most of this loop.

    I opted to shorten my hike when we reached the junction with Senator Rd. I was done climbing hills today. Joe joined me. Dave and Bruce continued on and finished the intended loop. We met back at the trailhead a little over an hour later.

    The weather was gorgeous. Clear blue skies for most of the morning, giving way to patchy clouds in the afternoon. It was a bit warm during the last few miles, but occasional cloud cover and a slight breeze made it bearable. I managed to stay upright the entire hike and made it home without a scratch, both of which are a first for me when hiking with Joe and Bruce! :y:

    Dave, it was nice meeting and hiking with you. Bruce and Joe, it was fun as always. Hope to see you all soon!
    Dandrea Trail #285
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
    Dandrea - Yankee Doodle - Senator Loop
    Always enjoy a nice loop in this area. Under a hundred today, clouds rolled in around noon.

    other versions from years gone by...

    2013-08-17 25mi / 5,100k
    Arrastra Pine Dandrea Yankee Loop, AZ

    Jul 05 2014 20mi / 4,500k
    Yankee Doodle Eastern Loop, AZ
    Dandrea Trail #285
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    My first hike in quite some time involving both AEG and elevation. (Though not quite as much elevation as the 65,616 feet claimed by my crappy Garmin 62S. :roll: )

    I've been having some chafing problems with my new hike shirt, so following marathoners' lead -- not that I would actually run a marathon :lol: -- before I set out on my hike, I greased up my nipples. (Don't get your hopes up for the photoset.) :D

    We drove up Walker Rd., but I was not sure where to turn for Five Corners. When we arrived in Potato Patch, I knew I had missed the turn as Potato Patch was my intended destination, not start point. Walker Rd. has small washed out sections and is a bit rough. Car drivable, but not in the best condition. Certainly not as good as I recall last year. We back-tracked. Big Bug Mesa Rd. was the road we wanted. Despite having a lower-level topo symbol than Walker Rd., it was in much better condition. Easily car drivable all the way to Five Corners. Post-hike, we exitted via Poland Junction Rd., avoiding the traffic snarl in Prescott on our way to the traffic snarl on I-17 south. Poland Junction Rd., despite having an even lower level topo symbol than Big Bug Mesa Rd., had the best surface of all, but is very twisty and quite narrow. You really need to go slow. Not just for traffic, but cows -- about 10 of whom blocked our way for five minutes.

    Driving from Five Corners to the southern trailhead is only an option if you have 4WD and high clearance.

    Starting out from Five Corners and doing only Dandrea Trail #285 could either add a mile to your hike (if you walk down FR 706 to the unmarked trailhead) or subtract a mile from your hike (if you take the FR 261 shortcut). Likewise at the north end, in Potato Patch, you could add about .75 miles to your hike by walking out to the community park on Walker Rd. There's picnic tables, so it is a good place to stop for a snack. I did all the extra distance.

    The southern half of the trail is oak and shrub. There is some shade, but it is infrequent, small and not very dark. Mostly exposure, being on the south side of the hill. It is rocky in places. Compared to the northern segment, it is not as rocky or slippery, but it is steeper. The vegetation changes after crossing FR 261, into pines without much undergrowth. There's several camp spots with fire rings -- one of which was big enough for a human sacrifice. :scared: It took me 1:10 walking time to get up. It only took me another 2:27 to finish the final 3/4s of the hike.

    At the Trail #284 saddle, the Boy Scouts sign ( [ photo ] ) is missing and the post is down. I thought at first the famous cross tree -- the one you walk under -- was also down, but it is still there, it was just around another corner. The northern half of the hike, down to Potato Patch, is yet a third type of vegetation, still pines, but with lots of undergrowth, turning to aspens in "town". (Many of which have been carved up with names. :roll: ) Lots of good shade in the northern half. :DANCE:

    Two creeks on the south segment, and one on the north, were trickling.

    Back at the saddle, I ate lunch. Despite being 7000 feet up, it was quite warm on the hike back from the saddle down to Five Corners, due to facing the sun and not much shade.

    Hike Video:

    Permit $$
    no fees or permits reported

    if incorrect tell us about it

    Prescott Forest
    Prescott National Forest Pass

    Only trailheads with six "amenities" have fees. Amenities are picnic tables, trash, toilet, parking, interpretive signing and security.

    Map Drive

    To hike
    page created by joebartels on Nov 20 2012 10:01 pm
    help comment issue

    end of page marker