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Crest #270 - Rustler Park to Barfoot LO, AZ

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Difficulty 1.5 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Round Trip 3 miles
Trailhead Elevation 8,436 feet
Elevation Gain 387 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 4.94
Interest Peak
Backpack Connecting Only
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
17  2020-09-13
Crest Trail - Barfoot Park to Fly's Peak
27  2020-06-17
Chiricahuas - South Flys and Snowshed
7  2018-10-26 Sredfield
25  2009-09-20 Vashti
7  2009-09-19 snakemarks
15  2009-09-19 tibber
Author Vashti
author avatar Guides 4
Routes 84
Photos 426
Trips 126 map ( 729 miles )
Age Female Gender
Location Gilbert, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Aug, Sep, Jul, May
Seasons   Spring to Summer
Sun  5:12am - 7:26pm
1 Alternative

Lookout with a View worth Seeing!
by Vashti

We hiked this segment of the crest trail while staying the weekend at Rustler Park Campground. The trail conveniently passes near the campground. Three adults, one 4-year old, one 3-year old, one 2-year old, and one 10-month old plus a Tibetan Mastiff, completed the hike. We were a motley crew! >:D The youngest two were in kid carriers, but the two older kids managed the hike quite well.

The official trailhead for this hike is actually before the campground and has a separate parking lot. However, there is a sign in the campground that says "trail" and leads you to the crest trail. From here, the posted sign lists the Barfoot Lookout at 1.5 miles away, leading to the right. We figured that was manageable for the kids. Flys Peak is to the left.

The trail continues up the ridge through a mixed forest. As you proceed further up the trail, the trees' breaks offer great views of the mountain range. We had beautiful weather for our hike. Wildflowers line the well defined and easily followed trail. The grade is not too strenuous but is up for most of the way. We reached a saddle with a sign listing Barfoot lookout as a quarter of a mile away. We continued up the trail. Near the top, the switchbacks are a bit more noticeable, but still not strenuous.

Barfoot lookout is on top of the ridge. As you trek up the last switchback out of the trees, you see the first building. The lookout comprises a cluster of pale yellow painted buildings, a gray pipe fence, and a nonfunctional light green painted pump. One building looks to be an outhouse, one a shed, and the other is the lookout building itself. All are locked. There is a sign that tells you that indeed you have reached Barfoot Lookout. The lookout house is beautiful. Perched on the bare rock, it is full of windows. A pipe fence extends out from the lookout house to offer some small protection from the dropoff. Recent maintenance has been done on the lookout site, as you can see an old screen door and some wood lying next to the lookout house. Peeking in the windows shows sign designating which canyon is which (since the purpose of the lookout house is for forest fire detection) and a plethora of paint cans as the inside of the lookout house is being redecorated. The views from the Lookout are enthralling and well worth the meager 1.5-mile trek up to the site. Seldom has a posted lookout point been so unique.

After some lunch and rest, our strange crew started down the mountain. The kids walking got very tired towards the end, but in general, I would recommend this as a family hike! :)

Note that the water system at Rustler Park Campground is no longer in service. Bring all the water you need.

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2009-09-22 Vashti
    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 $$

    Coronado Forest
    MVUMs are rarely necessary to review unless mentioned in the description or directions
    Coronado Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUMs)

    Map Drive
    FR / Dirt Road / Gravel - Car Okay

    To Rustler Park CG Trailhead
    From Tucson, take I-10 east to Willcox. From Willcox, head south on AZ Highway 186 for 33 miles. Turn left (east) on AZ Highway 181 toward Chiricahua National Monument and drive 3 miles, then turn right (south) on FR 42 (Pinery Canyon Road). Continue up Pinery Canyon on FR 42 for 12 miles to the junction with FR 42D (Rustler Park Road), at Onion Saddle. Turn right and drive about 2.8 miles on FR 42D to the signed parking area for Rustler Park Trailhead on the left.

    Forest Roads 42 and 42D are gravel roads suitable for passenger vehicles. Open from April through November, they are not plowed and are usually closed following early or late season snowstorms. These roads are rough and dusty and may be muddy and slick after a rain.

    2009-08-11 Preston Sands writes: There is a sign at Rustler Park TH indicating that trailhead parking is $5.00, as of 8-9-09. It was not there last October.

    2009-09-22 Vashti writes: Campground fees are currently $10/night, and the trail head parking is listed as $5/night on the sign.

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 243 mi - about 4 hours 28 mins
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 134 mi - about 2 hours 53 mins
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 387 mi - about 6 hours 34 mins
    page created by Vashti on Sep 22 2009 4:26 pm
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
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