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Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch, AZ

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Guide 40 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Phoenix > Phoenix NE
3.2 of 5 by 14
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Difficulty 1.5 of 5
Distance Loop 4 miles
Trailhead Elevation 2,740 feet
Elevation Gain 476 feet
Accumulated Gain 528 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 6.64
Interest Peak
Backpack No
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Inaugural Calculation on Button Tap!
4  2018-12-27 LindaAnn
18  2018-11-11 Naferg323
10  2016-04-03 JasonCleghorn
11  2016-02-19 black_toes
7  2015-06-10
Browns Mtn - Cathedral - Amphitheater Loop
7  2015-04-09
Goldie Brown
10  2014-12-30 gummo
12  2014-12-07
Cone Brown's Loop
Page 1,  2,  3
Author Booneman
author avatar Guides 9
Routes 33
Photos 728
Trips 2,916 map ( 23,884 miles )
Age 38 Male Gender
Location Chandler, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Mar, Nov, Feb, Jan
Seasons   Autumn to Spring
Sun  6:15am - 6:24pm
Official Route
7 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
Nice loop with a peak
by Booneman

This new trail in the Northern section of the McDowell Sonoran Preserve takes you clockwise around (and to the summit of) Brown's Mountain, starting from Brown's Ranch trailhead. Follow the rolling Upper Ranch trail for approximately 1.9-2.0 miles until you reach Brown's Mountain trail, which is where the climb begins to reach the saddle at 2.4 miles. A short, steeper 0.2 mile section will take you to the summit at 3,253ft offering expansive views of the North valley. The descent takes you down the South side of the monuntain on Brown's Mountain trail 1.4 miles back to the trailhead.

Brown's Mountain is somewhat unique in that the trail actually takes you to the peak, unlike most trails in the preserve. The area also has a great deal of history in regards to the Brown family and ranching in the early 1900s. This newly opened section of the preserve (June 2013) offers over 50 miles of trails well suited to hikers, mountain bikers, riders and runners. Even though the trails are very well marked, be sure to pick up a map at the trailhead (provided free of charge), and bring plenty of water as the trails are completely exposed to the sun.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

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2013-06-23 Booneman
    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 12 deeper Triplog Reviews
    Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch
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    Doing pathfinder duties at Brown's Ranch from 8:30 to 11:30 and decided to hike to the summit as I'd not done it for several years. Footing was better than I recall on the trail coming down from the summit. I think erosion has washed some top soil away and left a rocky base in some areas.
    Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch
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    Browns Mtn - Cathedral - Amphitheater Loop
    It was fine time turtle got a bit of elevation in his rehab diet.
    We were treated to a bobcat siting on the way in. Denny about wet himself.

    Overcast, misted a couple of times, a bit of a breeze, the weather was perfect.
    We saw a couple of hikers and some mountain bikers enjoying the day.

    I ran the Turtle up Brown's Mountain, then was going to show him around some of the Brown's Ranch ruins.
    The McDowell Mountain Conservancy had a large group of stewards out (15-20) in the Browns Ranch ruin area. They were comparing old documents/surveys to the current ruins, documenting and recording what they found.

    Next off to show Denny the Metates at Cathedral Rock and a stop by the Ampitheater.

    An enjoyable morning catching up with my favorite Testudine. :y:
    Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch
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    Goldie Brown
    Given the very nice day, we decided to head over to North Region of the McDowell Preserve to get in a few miles. With a clear sky, light breeze and temps in the low to mid 70s, it would be impossible to imagine a more perfect time to have some dirt under your feet.

    Looped around Cone and then came up Goldie Brown from the North side. Had never been up Brown before. Really nice views from the top.

    Dropped back down the south side and headed back to the trailhead. Made for a very nice stroll.
    Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch
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    As a newly minted MSP steward, I decided to contribute to my All Trails Challenge quota by driving up to this trailhead for the first time. The first mile of the hike was a pretty boring wander down a dirt path. But the trail up to the summit was great, and the views from the summit are pretty awesome and expansive.

    I did the Wrangler Trail by accident because I missed the turn for Brown's Mountain Trail. And I did the Jane Rau trail at the very end just to knock off another one on the list.
    Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch
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    Cone Brown's Loop
    Kathy was recovering from a cold/flu so she wanted to do something light so she texted me ;) . We tossed around a few options and then settled with the Scottsdale Sonoran Preserve as she hasn't done any hiking out here. I picked the Brown Cone's Loop clockwise. We had planned on Saturday but ended up going on Sunday. Sure glad that happened as the weather on Saturday was dreary at best. Sunday was perfect!

    We started our hike around 10 and finished in time for a late lunch. The trail is just so nice and lovely. There are many times when we could walk side by side to chit chat. I also had my new camera so I was taking it for the inaugural hike. It is a bit of a learning curve as it's compact and I kept hitting the wrong buttons ](*,) . Essentially the camera (Panasonic DMC-ZS40) is a replica of my old camera except compact and it has a couple other bells and whistles like wifi and 30x zoom instead of 24 and a leveler.

    I had our route written on a very small piece of paper that I had to consult a number of times so that we could do this :wrt: : Brown's Mtn Trail to Wrangler to Cone Mountain Trail to Upper Ranch Trail to Wrangler to Brown's Mtn Summit to Brown's Mtn Trail to Upper Ranch to Brown's Ranch Rd... got it? We encountered a few hikers here and there as well as bikers. Our biggest surprise was seeing Mazatzal on the SEastern side of Cone Mountain. He recognized me as Kathy and I were just chatting away. We stopped and visited with him and his wife and their friend for a few moments exclaiming what a wonderful day it was for a hike.

    Our HAZtraks were having a competition as Kathy's started at the parking lot where mine didn't decide to start until we were a little ways on the trail. Also, Kathy's phone has more of an adult female voice where mine has what sounds like a female teenager's voice (I am trying to change the voice but am not having much luck with that so far). I used the gps route posted here from Scout II even though the mileage on the screen was like 17 or something :x .

    We continued our journey around the western side of Cone and then headed east again before taking the trail toward the Summit. We took a break at the saddle to eat the pearapples I had brot and then headed to the Summit where we observed the various landmarks and mountains around us before heading back down. I like that one piece of the trail where you come around the rock face below the saddle as I think the view is enhanced with the rock face.

    On our way back we discussed where to go for lunch. I had RXed where Juan Jaime's was and we decided to go there. That is one nice shopping center. Anyway, it was lovely as we sat outside and enjoyed our meal and beverage. The margaritas were exceptional as the amount of tequila seemed just right and it wasn't too sour. So kudos to the bartender which according to the waiter was him. Anyway, it's a nice joint; especially today with perfect temps to enjoy more of the outdoors :) .

    Now I made my first video using the new software Adobe Premiere Elements 13. I sure do like this new interface that Adobe introduced with Premiere 11; I've been on 10 so was really looking forward to taking the new stuff for a spin. I'm not too impressed with the image quality of my photos but I had the camera set at - 1/3rd for a sunny day so I'm hoping that's why the photos aren't as good as I hoped.

    I can't upload the video as I'm currently experiencing a problem with my brand new computer:
    '); document print.print(); $('#object1').empty(); }); return false; } I thot I had it fixed yesterday morning as I did all sorts of stuff but then I uploaded a new program to set up my camera's wifi functions and the error came back (for example, I don't get the triplog comment box :( ).

    Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch
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    Cone Mountain & Brown's Mountain Summits
    needed a peak today
    also needed a decent hike
    backed out of one event, missed out on another, and had two less than stellar days due to weather
    i've been up brown's mountain before, but not this year
    coupled with cone mountain, seemed worth driving up to the mcdowell sonoran preserve - north
    took a nap after work this morning, then finally got going and started hiking around noon
    upper ranch trail to cone mountain loop
    found a decent line on the east side of cone mountain
    pretty easy off trail
    most vegetation was avoidable, any scree was packed down by recent rains, and there were lots of black rocks to step on
    approached from the same side flying_fliver did on his ascent
    the summit area was bigger than i anticipated
    you're not very high, but still good views of the other peaks: brown's, cholla and little granite mountains
    didn't stay long due to some flying ants and other bugs
    came down the same way and continued on the loop back to upper ranch trail
    took a right on brown's mountain trail and hit the summit
    more nice views of MSP-N and a good breeze by now
    heard a beehive in the lighter cliff face on the descent - didn't stop to look :o
    took wrangler, rustler and hackamore trails to finish out the day
    another beehive along hackamore about halfway between rustler and cone mountain trails :o
    an ambitious hike bot could get good tracks for rustler and hackamore trails from my route
    not much AEG out here if you're not hitting the peaks
    haven't seen all the trails, but i'll be back, hopefully for a trail run on some of the others
    saw only four hikers and one mountain biker
    seemed odd for such a nice afternoon
    had fun and got two more peaks for 2014 :)
    Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch
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    Well I decided today to hit Brown's Mountain in the McDowell Sonoran Desert Preserve.
    The hike was nice and quiet only one other hiker out. I wanted to try something with a little elevation. I started up to the summit, but decided my ankle was not ready for all the loose rock and sand. My concern wasn't going up but going down. So I played it safe and headed back down. After all there will be better views in the spring.
    After getting back to the trail head I decided to do Jane Rau Interpretive Trail. It was a short little hike with a lot to see. I even had a Cardinal fly right by me.
    Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch
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    Had the day off for MLK holiday - kids at daycare - so I got in a nice morning hike in northern McDowell preserve. I went counter-clockwise from this description. First time I've been down the back part of Brown's Mountain and it's plain but pretty (and more quiet). Cone mountain trail looks like a nice flat trail to try with kids sometime.
    Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch
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    After a couple weeks off to let my blisters heal, I was looking for a moderately easy hike that wasn't too long. This time I taped up my feet and was blister-free. :) My first time at the McDowell Sonoran Preserve, and I'm not sure if I'll be back. A little too crowded to make the 45 min drive from home worth it. The parking lot was packed, and there were huge crowds just hanging around the trailhead, but there weren't quite as many people on the trails as we expected (thankfully).

    We did a counter-clockwise loop through the Brown's Mountain Trail (hitting the summit along the way) and all the way back down the Upper Ranch Trail. All the trails are very well-marked and easy to follow. The Brown's Ranch Road Trail was pretty uneventful, but a pretty good climb on the Brown's Mountain Trail. The summit was very steep and slippery, but short. Excellent 360° views. We had the summit to ourselves for our 10 min break, but saw a few people coming up as we were going back down. We planned to extend the loop via the Cone Mountain and Hackamore Trails, but we got a late start today and had to cut the hike short.
    Brown's Mountain Summit via Upper Ranch
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    McDowell Sonoran Preserve - North
    Checking out a new area and playing with a new toy. Tons of trail choices all in great shape.
    Saw a Coyote with a fresh rabbit kill run in front of me.

    All sorts of Emergency equipment from the parking lot to Dynamite/Pima on my way home.
    Never heard what was going on.


    :next: Perfect weather
    :next: The Virgin's Breast
    :next: Brown's Mountain views
    :next: Brown's Ranch Ruins
    :next: Cathedral Rock
    :next: Balanced Rock
    :next: The Amphitheater
    :next: Granite Mountain Loop
    :next: Cholla Mountain Loop

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To Brown's Ranch Trailhead
    From the 101 in North Scottsdale, drive North on Pima/Princess drive and go East on Happy Valley Road to the stop sign at the instersection of Happy Valley & Alma School Road. Follow Alma School Road North past Dynamite until it ends at Brown's Ranch Trailhead.

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 34.0 mi - 44m
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 135 mi - 2h 4m
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 139 mi - 2h 15m
    page created by Booneman on Jun 23 2013 2:26 pm
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