This Wed-5/15 to
Mon-5/20 (5nt/6day) camping and hiking trip was a few months in the planning.
Since my first visit to our Sierra Ancha Wilderness
in May'07 and prior-to this trip, I had always planned only long day hiking trips from our Phoenix area which made for very long days with most always late after dark returns. Oregon Hiker had made a few previous trips up to this area to camp and hike and after some discussions I was convinced that we should plan a "Camp Grasshopper" style trip for a more extended period. I also wanted to invite others to join us, but I was a little concerned with coordinating logistics, the type of some off-trail hikes we were planning, and the fact that this visit would be my first time G/H Camping in an area location that I could not clearly recall the layout of for a group type campsite (this remote 4WD access FR235 Billy Lawrence TH area).
My suspicions were correct and as it turned-out for this week visit, it was best that we planned this trip as we did. We did locate an awesome group campsite just off FR235 and only 3.1 high-clearance vehicle miles (when dry) in from Hwy 288.. http://hikearizona.com/decoder.php?ZTN=17734
at 6050ft elevation. My hopes are to be able to schedule a future year 2014 group outing to this vehicle camp location for other to also enjoy some of what this so diverse and rugged wilderness area has to offer.
For this May'13 trip, we had wonderful spring weather conditions (at 6774ft camp elevation- lows in the high 40's-low 50's & day highs in the upper 70's-low 80's) with no rain in the forecast, minimal campsite winds, with excellent, remote, and scenic campsite high cliff morning and afternoon view areas
For our planned day outings, all hikes were partially on existing trails and partially off-trail to areas that neither one of us had previously visited. It was also very enjoyable and rewarding for me to do some of the HAZ- "Route Manager" map and satellite GPS planning efforts for our trip. During our week stay, I was able to hike with Oregon Hiker the top four of seven day hike options we had to choose from..all new areas to explore and very rewarding as expected.
New HAZ Hike Descriptions- Trip Logs- Photosets- GPS Routes to come for others to hopefully also enjoy