register help

Horseshoe Bend - SRC Wilderness, AZ

no permit
175 8 0
Guide 8 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Globe > Roosevelt Salt
4.5 of 5 by 4
clicktap icons for details
Distance One Way 0 miles
Trailhead Elevation 2,535 feet
Interest Off Trail Hiking & Perennial Creek
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
15  2019-04-27 topohiker
10  2018-05-13
Horseshoe Bend ruins (SRW)
1  2017-11-18 ssk44
13  2017-11-04
Horseshoe Bend ruins (SRW)
25  2016-11-05
Rockinstraw Mountain
15  2016-04-23
Redmont Peak/Wash - Saltriver
32  2016-02-27 topohiker
1  2015-04-25 ssk44
Page 1,  2
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   Mar, Nov, Apr, Feb
Sun  6:07am - 6:28pm
2 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby

Beautiful segment of the Salt River, within the Salt River Canyon Wilderness. Terrain is classic sonoran desert and the location sits in the shadow of nearby Rockinstraw Mountain to the southwest. Activities consist of hiking, backpacking, swimming and fishing. All river hiking is easy to moderate and all off-trail. Recommended route options are both upstream and downstream with multiple swimming/fishing holes. The trailhead parking area is located above the river at a large permanent locked gate put in place by the Tonto National Forest. Vehicle river access is not available.

Check out the Triplogs.

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

2018-07-14 HAZ_Hikebot
  • guide related image guide related image
    guide related

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 Triplog Reviews
Horseshoe Bend - SRC Wilderness
rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5
Enjoying the fall colors at one of my favorite Salt River destinations. I love this place. Sunrise is particularly special at Horseshoe Bend. You pay your dues getting out hear but its always worth it. Late November is always best for fall colors. The river was running clean and clear at about 130 CFS. ... 0060

Eric :D

Salt Cedar (Tamarisk)
Horseshoe Bend - SRC Wilderness
rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
This intriguing and difficult to summit Benchmark Peak in our Salt River Canyon Wilderness has been on my radar ever sense Oregon Hiker and I made our first exploratory driving and hiking trip to this area in November, 2012. Since, I have viewed this peak from a distance on a number of interesting hikes in the area.

In the last couple of months I had completed a review of the area on our HAZ-MapDEX Topo Overlay options and Satellite View along with Google Earth to plan an off-trail GPS Hiking Route to summit Jump Mountain 4878.

I first rather briefly analyzed the east side summit approach.. off of an old, unnumbered, and serious 4WD Road which takes off from FR645 then crosses upper Blackjack Wash then ends abruptly further up the Jump Mountain east side ridge line. I initially eliminated this option due to the difficult 4WD access road (some of which could probably be hiked) and the total driving miles/time from the PHX area required for a planned day hike to reach an acceptable Park/TH Start location. This option also appeared to me to require a serious off-trail & steep section of thick vegetation to bushwhack through (but not confirmed) before reaching the summit.

My second and chosen approach option route for this first hike attempt was via FR219 end at the Horseshoe Bend area of the Salt River. This planned hiking route was to be first up via two well defined area wash drainages, then an off-trail up to the summit which appeared to me on our HAZ Overview Topo Maps and Google Earth to be the preferred route in of choice..until actually viewing it in person..

This hike day in at ~2:pm Brian and I elected for safety reasons to abort this first summit hike attempt.. So close! :)

Lessons hopefully Learned:
.. I need more practice planning serious, remote, off-trail GPS Routes on HAZ- Satellite View & Google Earth with a sanity check required :lol:
.. I sometimes take-on more than I can handle at my age and present physical condition and this was one of those times. Me with a 25lb day pack to start and Brian with his 28lbs (8 of which was electronic equiptment for HAM- SOTA BM Peak activation), Brian was still in great physical shape for this tough hike. He needed to slow this pace down considerable waiting for me to catch up and in view. I do believe we both would have made the summit with some time to spare if I had been in better physical condition and had not stopped so often to take so many pictures.
.. This hike option in mid-December requires a much earlier hike start than our 9:25am.
.. We both also under estimated the amount of H2O we would need to do this out and back hike
(I had 3.5 liters, Brian had 4, and we both were rationing water before reaching the vehicle)

Some smarter planning time, and a return visit for a successful summit attempt will happen :D
Horseshoe Bend - SRC Wilderness
rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
Really great day we almost made the summit but began running short on time. The washes were nice highways but the mountain itself was a challenge. A few false peaks but great views. Maybe we can attempt a different approach in the future. However from the direction we started from a daybreak start from the gate is a must to make it happen in the daylight.

APRS INFO!mt=terrain&z=11&ts=138 ... %2FW7JET-7

I always enjoy the off trail challenges Hank comes up with.

WHAT THE HECK IS SOTA well here is the description

Summits on the Air (SOTA) is an award scheme for radio amateurs and shortwave listeners that encourages portable operation in mountainous areas. SOTA has been carefully designed to make participation possible for everyone - this is not just for mountaineers! There are awards for activators (those who ascend to the summits) and chasers (who either operate from home, a local hilltop or are even Activators on other summits).

SOTA is now fully operational in many countries across the world. Each country has its own Association which defines the recognised SOTA summits within that Association. Each summit earns the activators and chasers a score which is related to the height of the summit. Certificates are available for various scores, leading to the prestigious "Mountain Goat" and "Shack Sloth" trophies. An Honour Roll for Activators and Chasers is maintained at the SOTA online database.

It's a fun way for me to combine 2 things I enjoy.
Horseshoe Bend - SRC Wilderness
rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5
I didn't get enough on my fist visit. I just had to go back. I really wanted to capture some summer monsoon images from the upper hills surrounding the basin. This area has tremendous beauty for me personally. I really do love it. Everything from Horseshoe Bend to Redmond Flat is high on my short list of favorite desert destinations.

Stream Flow Data

Some helpful data on river flow for the area... The flow has really come up throughout last week from increased monsoon activity. During my prior visit last Saturday, the flow measured about 115 cubic feet per second (CFS). Yesterday evening the flow was around 185 CFS and muddy. If you ever decide to visit this destination with hopes of hiking along the river, I highly recommend that the flow is not exceeding 150 CFS. Crossing back and forth along the river starts getting tricky beyond that. Not impossible, but tricky. You really can't hike this river without crossing periodically. 110-130 is just about perfect and the water is typically clear at those numbers. The nearest USGS gaging station for this area and the one utilized for the numbers noted above is #09498500 Salt River Near Roosevelt Lake. The station is located downstream at the Highway 288 bridge. The nearest upstream option is #09497500 Salt River Near Chrysotile, just above the US60 bridge in Salt River Canyon. See USGS website for info... ... 0060 ... 0060

Eric :D
Horseshoe Bend - SRC Wilderness
rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
Yesterday Morning I was reading about this place in a recently posted trip log and on a whim I decided to check it out, so off I went. The road was dry and easily managed in 2wd in the jeep however after rain or during a storm it would be a challenge. After the 15 mile drive I arrived at the gate it was open so I decided to continue down to the river.

After parking I set out on foot and scouted out camping spots and enjoyed the water before the monsoon started threatening at that point I decided it was time to head out before the road became impassable as it has several spots where you can tell it gets some heavy runoff.

On the way in I ran into a group of cowboys driving cattle to one of the tanks and spoke to one of them for a bit about the road and the gate. He told me the reasons the forest service gave them for putting the gate up none of which he seemed to think were valid. He says it has stopped a lot of the older guys that would fish down there from going. He also told me people thought the ranchers were responsible for the gate and retaliated by shooting up the tanks and tampering with corals. He assured me that they were just as upset about the gate and they have posted signs letting people know they had nothing to do with it. He also mentioned that the gate is open from time to time he thinks people keep cutting the lock off.

This is a neat spot I hope to go back and do some camping down there. Thanks ssk44 for posting it.

PS I forgot the camera at home so no pics from me :(
Horseshoe Bend - SRC Wilderness
rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5
The Salt River Canyon Wilderness has so much to offer. This is a really special area along the upper Salt. I've spent so much of my life searching out the obscure that I tend to miss the obvious. This spot has been literally right under my nose for about five years. I've always viewed Horseshoe Bend from afar. I'm glad that I finally checked it out. My evening was rewarded with the most spectacular combination of dark ominous storms, lighting, and sun. The closing finale was a incredible full width rainbow against an ominous charcoal sky that simply took my breath away. It was a great evening that I wont soon forget. Flow was about 115 CFS. ... 0060

Eric :D

Permit $$

Map Drive
High Clearance possible when dry

To hike
Access is off Highway 188 via Wheatfields Road (See GPS driving route)... Highway 188 - Wheatfields Road - Hicks Road - FR219 (Horseshoe Bend Road)

From Mesa Arizona take Highway US 60 to Miami. Turn left at Highway 188 to Roosevelt Lake. Travel 4.5 miles north. The first 4.5 miles of highway 188 have two northbound lanes and two southbound lanes. Stay in the right lane while traveling north. The right lane ends at Wheatfields Road, which is where you will be exiting. Travel northwest on Wheatfields Road while paralleling highway 188 for 1.7 miles through a residential area. At 1.7 miles there is an abandoned slump-block building. Turn right at the slump-block building onto Hicks Road, which will soon go over a bridge crossing Pinal Creek. Pinal Creek is a wide sand wash. Once across the bridge, travel northwest on Hicks Road paralleling Pinal Creek for 2.3 miles to FR219. Just before reaching FR219 you will drive past a large well kept horse ranch on your left. At the beginning of FR219 there is a gate with a "Private Land Access Sign-In Book". FR219 is in a large sand wash. You will be driving through private land for about one mile. The private land ends at a cattle guard in the sand wash. Drive northeast along FR219 (Horseshoe Bend Road) from the gate for approximately 11.0 miles to the designated TH parking area (see maps).
page created by ssk44 on Jul 14 2013 8:12 am
3 pack - loud whistle
go prepared
help comment issue

end of page marker