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Merritt - Barbershop Short Loop, AZ

no permit
11 4 0
Guide 4 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Payson > Clints Well
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Difficulty 2.5 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance Loop 5 miles
Trailhead Elevation 7,425 feet
Elevation Gain 800 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 4 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 9
Interest Off Trail Hiking, Perennial Waterfall & Seasonal Creek
Backpack Yes
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Collective Slideshow
Inaugural Calculation next Tap
33  2018-09-13
Merrit Barbershop Dane Lower Loop
28  2018-08-29
Barbershop Merritt Draw Loop
10  2015-08-13 Oregon_Hiker
1  2014-08-09 hikeaz
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   May, Oct, Sep, Jun → 7 AM
Seasons   Spring to Autumn
Sun  7:00am - 5:19pm
Route Scout App
Official Route
2 Linked
Nearby Area Water
Merritt Draw Upper
Merritt Draw Upper
0.3 mi away
2.9 mi
569 ft
Barbershop Cyn Upper - Merritt Draw Upper Loop
Barbershop Cyn Upper - Merritt Draw Upper Loop
0.8 mi away
5.9 mi
800 ft
Camp Grasshopper - Mogollon Rim-C/Site#3
Camp Grasshopper - Mogollon Rim-C/Site#3
0.8 mi away
Maverick Canyon - Merritt Draw Loop
Maverick Canyon - Merritt Draw Loop
0.8 mi away
5.2 mi
648 ft
Merritt Draw Lower Loop - Mogollon Rim
Merritt Draw Lower Loop - Mogollon Rim
0.8 mi away
5.8 mi
754 ft
McFarland Spring via 4WD - Mogollon Rim
McFarland Spring via 4WD - Mogollon Rim
0.8 mi away
1.0 mi
247 ft
Barbershop Cyn & Dane Cyn - Mogollon Rim
Barbershop Cyn & Dane Cyn - Mogollon Rim
1.0 mi away
11.0 mi
1,783 ft
Barbershop Cyn Upper Loop - Mogollon Rim
Barbershop Cyn Upper Loop - Mogollon Rim
1.0 mi away
7.7 mi
1,512 ft
Camp Grasshopper - Mogollon Rim-C/Site#2
Camp Grasshopper - Mogollon Rim-C/Site#2
1.0 mi away
Merritt Draw Loop - Mogollon Rim
Merritt Draw Loop - Mogollon Rim
1.0 mi away
6.1 mi
975 ft
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Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
a charm of it's own
by hikeaz

This short loop makes a decent introduction to off-trail hiking in this area. Most of the canyon bottoms in this area are similar in appearance, but each has their own charm.

From our camp on 139C we descended the western embankment down a gradual slope. Once in the Merritt creek-bottom we turned downstream, hiking sometimes in the creek-bed and sometimes on the benches next to the creek. This is a beautiful, healthy forest rife with ferns and tall pines as well as some oaks.

After about 1.75/2 miles you will reach the 'confluence' with Barbershop Canyon - it will be the first canyon entering from the south-east and water will be running in it. There are well-used campsites at this intersection, as this is where the U-Bar Trail crosses Barbershop Canyon. Turning up Barbershop Canyon you will shortly encounter a metal signpost on creek-left (LDC) with a yellow triangle emblem on it. At this point there is a trail back up to 139C. A couple of our group ascended this trail and road-walked back to our camp. (see dotted red line on my map)

Most continued up Barbershop Canyon passing a small but tall waterfall on creek-right (LDC) - It is a beautiful spring cascading down the rocks. As you continue, watch for a sharp left-hand bend in the creek-bed (see my map) at about 1.6/1.8 miles from the confluence. After rounding this bend, you will see on creek-left (LDC) a substantial elk trail heading upslope. It is a steep trail, but all-in-all not bad as these elk trails go. Once at the top you will merely head west-ish across the flat pine-forest on a blanket of pine straw back to 139C and your starting point.

If you choose to continue up Barbershop Canyon past where we exited, the canyon walls will get shallower, making a hike out less arduous, but we were shooting to exit close to our starting point. If YOU choose to continue further up Barbershop, just exit where you please and road-walk back to your starting point.

Hiking in these canyons does not require a GPS (actually are pointless IN the canyon as you are merely following the creek-bed) but a map does help. There are myriad elk trails offering ingress/egress so just look for those; after all, these guys LIVE here and know the best routes.

    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.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    FR / Jeep Road - Car possible when dry

    To hike
    From the PHOENIX area: Take the Beeline Hwy 87 north all the way past Payson, Strawberry, and past the small community of Clints Well; Continue on Hwy 87 past the right turn for signed Blue Ridge Reservoir, continue on Hwy 87 past the signed right turn for Moqui / Blue Ridge Campgrounds, continue on Hwy 87 past the Blue Ridge Ranger Station to the next signed FR right turn onto FR95; Turn Right onto FR95 at way point N34 36.785 W111 11.209 and follow signs for FR95 South, then a major downhill on FR95 to FR95/FR96 intersection after crossing East Clear Creek Bridge; "Stay on" FR95 (a ~right turn SSW) and continue uphill until you reach signed FR139; Turn left onto FR139 (Note: set your odometer to "0") and continue south on FR139 for ~6.6mls to signed FR139C on your left side at waypoint N34 26.535 W111 11.900; Turn Left onto unmaintained, easy to follow gravel FR139C for a tish more than 3 miles - the exact spot you start is immaterial.
    page created by hikeaz on Aug 11 2014 7:42 am
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