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Blue Ridge - AZT #27, AZ

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726 99 5
Guide 99 Triplogs  5 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Payson > Clints Well
3.5 of 5 by 30
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Distance One Way 15.4 miles
Trailhead Elevation 7,246 feet
Backpack Yes & Connecting
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
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2  2019-07-29 Sredfield
21  2019-07-27
East Miller AZT Loop
32  2019-06-29 tibber
40  2018-10-06 tibber
10  2018-10-06 mazatzal
14  2018-09-23 DarthStiller
15  2018-07-21 kingsnake
8  2018-07-19
Devin Haught Rim Romp
Page 1,  2,  3,  4,  5 ... 7
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
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Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Sep, Jun
Sun  6:09am - 6:29pm
Official Route
11 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby

Likely In-Season!
From General Springs Cabin the trail follows General Springs Canyon until it reaches a trail junction. It then climbs out of the canyon on the west side and follows a two-track road and then more trail. The trail crosses FR 123 and heads north until it reaches FR 123A. It stays on this forest road up to East Clear Creek. After steeply descending and then steeply ascending the creek (upstream of Blue Ridge Reservoir) the trail works its way up to FR 751. After crossing the road it proceeds east and then north up to the drop into Blue Ridge Campground. From here the trail continues north and finally reaches Highway 87 at the junction with FR 138.

Southern Trailhead
FR 300 Trailhead
From the intersection of AZ 87 and AZ 260 north of Pine, drive east 2.6 miles on AZ 87 then turn right (south) toward FR 300. Go 0.1 miles and turn left onto FR 300. Avoid the frequent side roads and drive 12 miles on FR 300 to a turnoff on the left (north) at a historical marker for the Battle of Big Dry Wash. This is where the AZT crosses FR 300. Turn left and follow a power line 0.3 mile to General Springs Cabin. The road curves right to a small parking area and the trailhead.

Northern Trailhead
Highway 87
From the intersection of AZ 87 and AZ 260 north of Pine, drive northeast 19.5 miles on AZ 87 then turn right (south) on FR 138. (This is about 0.8 miles west of the Blue Ridge Ranger Station on AZ 87.) Signs on the highway point to Moqui Campground. The trailhead is about 100 yards south on FR 138, on the left (east) side of the road.

Updated 2017-07-24

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2018-07-14 HAZ_Hikebot

    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 of 24 deeper Triplog Reviews
    Blue Ridge - AZT #27
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    My third completed section of the Arizona Trail was Passage #27. This 1-day hike starts at the trailhead near General Springs Cabin on the FR300 at the Mogollon Rim and heads North past East Clear Creek and past Blue Ridge Reservoir where it then finishes at Highway 87.

    10/22/17 - General Springs Cabin/FR300 to Blue Ridge Reservoir/Hwy 87

    Mileage: 15.4 miles

    Joining with Patrick Fuchs yet again for another passage on the Arizona Trail, we decided that this one was short enough to make as a single-day hike. I'm always happy to get a break from the full backpack and go with the small summit bag with just the bare necessities. The plan was to camp near the trailhead on Saturday night, and do the entire passage on Sunday. I met Patrick on Saturday afternoon at our finishing trailhead so we could leave his car there, and we also dropped off 3 liters of water and his can of iced coffee at a spot where the AZT crosses a forest service road. This was our safety reserve in case we ran dry in the first 10 miles.

    Later that afternoon, we joined with Jason Smyer and Nick Nanez, two friends who were already camping up on the Mogollon Rim above Strawberry. We car camped and had some fun that night, getting some drone footage of us all standing on the edge of the Rim. We ate good food, had a few beverages, and went to sleep.

    We got a bit of a late start on Sunday morning (thanks to me), and didn't get to the trailhead until 9am. At the trailhead, there's a plaque memorializing the Battle of Big Dry Wash. Jason and Nick didn't have time to hike with us for the entire trail, so they gave us a ride to the trailhead and did their own hike down to the abandoned railroad tunnel that Patrick and I checked out the previous weekend.

    Patrick had a last-minute addition to our hiking group (Lauren Krill) who joined up with us that morning. We had some miscommunication and just missed meeting with Lauren at the Hwy 87 / FR300 junction, so she was going to meet us at the trailhead instead. Patrick is a fast hiker, so I set out solo to get a head-start while he waited for Lauren to show up. They would catch up with me later.

    Within .3 miles, I came across the historic General Springs Cabin. Built in 1918, this old cabin was used for many years as a fire guard station. It was constructed conveniently next to a spring, which General Crook used while traveling the Old Fort Apache-Camp Verde military road. It is in surprisingly decent shape with the walls and roof virtually 100% intact, and the interior was clean and still holding up to the test of time. Using the cabin is prohibited, but this would make a fantastic 2-room shelter if absolutely necessary.

    Moving north, this passage follows the Fred Haught Trail for the first couple of miles along the creekbed where water was trickling but plentiful enough to filter from. I was carrying 4 liters for the first 10 mile stretch, so I didn't bother topping off. This section of the trail is very scenic, staying shaded by Ponderosas and some Oak trees along the way before it splits off to the west and leaves the Fred Haught Trail.

    After the split from Fred Haught Trail, the terrain flattens out for the most part and wanders through easy stretches of forest. The trail is easy to follow on this passage, and miles are easily conquered through here. Along the way, I passed through a small burn area and then into a clearing that had one of the largest Ponderosas I've ever seen.

    About 8 miles in, I took a short break and that's when Patrick and Lauren caught up with me. They were flying, so I jumped on the train and off we went. Within about a mile, we had a 700' drop into the canyon where East Clear Creek feeds into Blue Ridge Reservoir. This crossing was completely dry, but I was surprised at how wide this spot was. In the spring, this would be a very wet crossing across smooth river rocks, but probably not much more than knee-deep.

    We crossed the riverbed and started our ascent up the other side of the canyon when we stopped to take a lunch break. Not long after sitting down, a true Arizona Trail thru-hiker was coming southbound and stopped to chat with us. We all sat and had lunch together and shared stories of the AZT and other adventures. "Happy Hour" was his trail name, and he was a very friendly guy. Patrick gave him a little extra water so he could make it to the next source, and Lauren gave him some of her extra vegetables. His eyes lit up and he thanked them for the trail magic. Happy Hour has already done the entire AZT from Sunflower to the Mexican border, and he was doing a flip-flop this month, having started on the Utah border just a couple of weeks before we ran into him. Only a few days left and he was going to complete the entire 800 miles of the AZT. By the time I finished this write-up, he had finished the entire trail. Congrats, brother!

    We say goodbye to Happy Hour after lunch, and head on up the trail. That 700' climb back up the north side of the canyon goes fast, and we're happy to be back on flat ground again so we can finish the day. The trees thinned out just a little in this section, giving way to an area of considerable deadfall and also a huge dry meadow. In this section, we come across our water cache and I load up with an extra liter. Patrick enjoys his iced coffee, and I leave the other 2 liters of water in the trail register box for the next thirsty hiker. 4 miles to go.

    We blast through the last 4 miles, going mostly through Oak forest. After crossing a ridge with some creepy dead-looking Oak trees, we drop down into the Blue Ridge and Moqui campground areas. Blue Ridge Campground is very well maintained, but the bathrooms were locked and the water spigot handle had been removed. I'm glad we stashed water and didn't have to rely on that spigot! The Oak leaves littered the forest floor and covered much of the last downhill section of the trail, but there were still some pops of yellow leaves left behind on the trees. We breeze through the final mile and get to Patrick's car.

    Patrick drops me off at my truck on the 87/300 junction, and takes Lauren down the 300 back to her car at the trailhead. I head home on the 260 through Camp Verde and get lucky with zero traffic on the I-17 back to Phoenix, feeling happy about hiking 15.4 miles in 6.5 hours.

    Blue Ridge - AZT #27
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    Nice weekend. Got to see elk, help some distressed hikers, and finish up the Blue Ridge passage in 2 dayhikes.

    Still can't believe everything dried out from Friday night's torrential downpours.

    After a 2 hour and roughly 4 mile search, found my GPS that escaped due to a hole in my pocketses :y:

    Poverty Draw, where the AZT crosses, was flowing nicely, about 20 ft wide and 6-12 inches deep. General Springs Canyon, where AZT meets up with Fred Haught was also flowing strong and deep.

    Very few flowers were seen.
    Blue Ridge - AZT #27
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    AZT26-27-GenSprgCyn-Battle of BigDryWash
    We had 2 goals on the day. First, check out the new reroute of what was AZT-27, now AZT-26 - Highline. Second, I've seen the indication on TOPO maps forever, of the location of the actual Battle of the Big Dry Wash, just south of the Blue Ridge Reservoir. I've been curious and could find no GPS Tracks or Geocoded photos.

    At Washington Park there were no indications of a reroute so we started up the existing trail/road, thinking that we'd find it on the way up. We made it to General Springs Cabin without finding the reroute. :(

    It's always a pleasant hike along the Fred Haught Trail leaving the cabin. We were on the trail until it left General Springs Canyon and then followed the canyon. The 4 miles in the canyon slowed the pace a bit, but was not all that bad. Plenty of pretty areas and pools of water.

    During lunch we decided to jump out and head over to the Historical Marker. The marker was a well built two sided monument with the description of the battle and names of all the Calvary involved. Interesting place to visit if you are in the area.

    From here it was off trail to pick up the AZT just south of Blue Ridge. Once again a pleasant roller coaster back to the Cabin.

    Down the rim again we stumbled on an unmarked trail taking off to the SE. We decided to take this hoping it was the reroute. Ding, Ding, Ding.... This reroute is much, much nicer than the road. You hang close to the East Verde and in the vegetation.

    Perfect temps and weather all day, cloudy with only threats of storms.

    Until signage is in place, for those looking for the very welcome reroute of the Highline 26 at Washington Park. Once at the Washington Park trailhead continue east through the parking lot on the Highline Trail (maybe 100yds) until the unmarked left turn. You are now on the reroute.
    Blue Ridge - AZT #27
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    Devin Tunnel Haught Rim Romp
    Needing to beat the heat and have been seeing a lot of posts about the Rim lately so a 4:30AM drive up the hill started my day. Gabby and I began at the Washington Park TH. I really started feeling that elevation difference the first mile and a half. Even my sneezes couldn't get a full breath! Colonel Devin mostly follows an old road under the power lines the whole way up. Also, this desert cat didn't bring a sweater and the wind blowing almost had me freezing my pumpkin off. I wanted that AEG climbing up the Rim but what's it worth if I didn't enjoy it? Railroad tunnel - check.. Made it up top in one hour. Passed General Springs Cabin and there were several cars at the Fred Haught TH. Anyone remember that movie 'Ferngulley'? Pretty sure it was filmed on location on this trail. (Nevermind it was animated, ok?) Sooooo many giant ferns everywhere it was very lush and beautiful. The trail crosses the creek several times as it heads north away from the Rim. The AZT signs every 500 ft were a little excessive. Went just past where the AZT splits off and then had to turn around due to time and commitments. Saw several elk that scattered immediately when they saw us. Was not looking forward to the return trip down the Rim but the views were really great and the sun felt great. Never thought I'd say that in June. No Mogollon Monster sightings today, but Gabby did walk right over a gopher snake crossing the path, I was really surprised she didn't even smell it. Really enjoyed the forest and nice weather today.
    Blue Ridge - AZT #27
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    AZ Trail Maintenance Weekend Blue Ridge
    A big crowd showed up for this AZT Work Weekend... 24. It is truly amazing how much work can be done with a big crew. In fact, we got done a couple hours earlier than I think they anticipated. This crew consists of many other stewards that chip in for other stewards of the Arizona Trail. I think it's just great. We had a few first timers as well and of course, lots of the old reliables.

    Many folks showed up Friday nite. It was an early wake up call, we had our breakfasts, packed our lunch, loaded tools and took a few vehicles to the Trailhead to head up the trail for the day. We had a quick demo for doing drainages and then split into groups of 2 or 3 to work each with a pic or mcleod or pulaski. Roger was in charge of the rock bar; we could have used another.

    I learned a lot more again about drainages. You have to think like you're rushing water and where would you go and where do we want it to go. I worked with Tracy and it took us about an hour to perfect one of our drainages. Shawn came along and said, well you could have a split with part of the water going down the other side :doh: . The other thing is to not just think of water coming down the trail but from the high side too.

    We had lunch under a large juniper tree before finishing off for the day including one area where we tried to keep folks on the trail by laying debris and expanding the trail. We did that from time to time, expanding the width of the trail. The main culprit was rather large rocks; altho they don't look that large until you try to get them out of the ground.

    Saturday was Pot Luck and wow, was there some great food out there and desserts. Everyone pretty much headed to their quarters when it got dark; I think around 8. Wendy and I looked at her pictures from her Utah river trip before we parted. The next morning it was Shawn's infamous pancakes. He had to get up early to start cooking two at a time but most of these volunteer workers are up around 5 to 5:30 anyway. And then it was off to work to finish up a few things and some finishing touches for the morning. I helped Wendy with camp and then headed back to the Valley of the Sun.

    The lighting was terrible for these photos and videos. I am using my new ZS60 that replaced the ZS50 that broke on my River Raft Trip. However, the light was just not the best.
    Part 1 of 2 [ youtube video ]
    Part 2 of 2 [ youtube video ]
    Blue Ridge - AZT #27
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    Southbound, Jumbo trailhead (near Rock Crossing campground) to Pine trailhead. Lovely day, quality trails, good scenery and greenery.

    Water: Lots of murky pools and slight flow in General Springs canyon. Good flow in at least half a dozen drainages along Highline between Washington Park and Geronimo.
    Blue Ridge - AZT #27
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    Beautiful segment! The trail through this area is well-marked and well-planned.
    A group of 6 of us hiked a leisurely S-N backpack of this segment, camping on the south lip of the East Clear Creek drainage(dry here). Further north, I particularly like the way the route (for the most part)circumvents the campgrounds near Blue Ridge, keeping the trail very pretty.
    For those doing this segment, the small tanks along FR123A hold substantial water a bit south of East Clear Creek.

    We off-trailed it over to the Big Dry Wash monument and back from our camp. igallery/image_page.php?id=5214

    Saw no one on the trails save for some poor, lost off-trail hiker that stumbled across our camp. (Couldn't have been a HAZ member because he turned down a cold Stone Arrogant Bastard!)
    Blue Ridge - AZT #27
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    Four Gates

    The heavy steel gates created by artist/welder Rob Bauer and installed in now 19 locations along the AZT have become icons, symbolizing the permanence of the Arizona National Scenic Trail while accommodating hikers, cyclists and equestrians yet blocking unauthorized vehicular traffic. Followings several days of site preparation, a sturdy band of stalwart volunteers installed four of these maintenance-free structures September 19 on Passages 28 and 29.

    Joe and Shawn “pre dug” the sites, working three days over a period of weeks. The ATA’s new electric jack hammer was initiated in this effort; THANK YOU to donors Phyllis Ralley, Frederick Frankenfeld, Bernadine McCollum, Elisabeth Good and Copper State Trail Riders.

    Funding sources for the gates themselves include Ben Masters and the Unbranded crew, as well as everyone who purchased a ticket for the film screening in Flagstaff last weekend.

    Rob brought the four gates north from where they are assembled in his shop in Catalina on Friday; the crew met in Pine early Saturday morning and caravanned to the first site. Since several members of the crew have been at all 15 previous installations they are quite practiced, and the actual installations took about 90 minutes per site. Each gate is one unified structure and is cemented (with 800 pounds of cement) into two 30-inch deep and two 18-inch deep holes with a cross-member buried a foot under the opening for the tread. The crew levels and plumbs the gate, mixes and pours the cement and attaches the fence wires to loops welded specifically for this on the outside posts. The final step is smoothing the tread through the gate, and wiping off any cement splatters. Over a few months the steel weathers to a brown patina, blending with desert or forest surroundings.

    These gates went in fences at FR 751, Moqui Campground horse bypass, and the north and south sides of the Highway 87 right-of-way.

    USFS Recreation Specialist Rose Harley managed the administrative clearances necessary for the project.

    Thanks to Rob B., Joe L., Tom K., Lee A., Bill H., Rose H. and Bob B.

    Shawn Redfield
    Blue Ridge - AZT #27
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    Day 3 of my 4-day solo camp on the Rim. Link to the camp triplog:

    After a stormy night, I made breakfast and then drove over to General Springs and headed north up Fred Haught. There was lots of water along the way. There was no one on the trail and even the footprints were gone courtesy of the rain. The area is very green right now.

    Went as far as FR 95 and turned back. Ran into a small horned toad, a little snake, a couple of a very small ATV back at the trailhead.

    Saw 3 elk on the drive back to camp. A cold beverage and an afternoon nap were a fitting end to a good hike.
    Blue Ridge - AZT #27
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Great overnighter with my cousin, and friend (who don't have HAZ accounts, yet...). Originally we had planned this to be a 2 night, 3 day trip, extending into the Happy Jack segment, but the storm on Friday put us up in a hotel in Payson. We knew we were going to wet this weekend (and we did), but we didn't want to be completely miserable.

    Day 1:

    Getting to the trailhead in the morning was an adventure within itself. We had to park one vehicle down at the Washington Park TH and the other on top of the Rim at the end of Segment 28. We eat breakfast and started heading up the Rim, and not 10 minutes outside of Payson there were car troubles and we were back in town fixing a broken alternator. We fixed the truck and headed back up the Rim. Once me and my friend got to the trailhead we were planning on ending at, we waited for my cousin to show up in the Jeep and eventually realized that there had been some miscommunication about exactly which trailhead we were ending at. This led to an hour and a half long search for each other (and cell service) on the 87 between the 138 and Clint's Well. Eventually we met up and decided to cut the Blue Ridge segment short by 5 miles because of lost time and parked the Jeep at the trailhead right after you climb out of East Clear Creak.

    We head down to Washington Park Trailhead in the truck and met a thru-hiker named Richard there. He was waiting for some people to come bail him out of the rain, and he warned us of the cold/muddy conditions ahead on the trail. We decided to continue anyway.

    As we climbed up the Rim (read: as I was huffing and puffing...) via the Colonel Devin Trail it started to rain and it eventually turned to snow as we reached the top of the Rim. There were still small patches of snow at the top, left over from the storm that happened that day and the day before, but mostly it was just muddy. We crossed the 300 and headed to General Springs Cabin. Since we only had another hour of sun light left, we started looking for a camping site as soon as we hit the single track. We found a nice little spot not too far down the trail, set up our shelters, and started working on getting a fire started. With how wet everything was it took quite a bit of babying to get a fire going, but we eventually got it. The night wasn't as cold as I thought it would be, but around 4-5 am it got a little too nippy for my clothing system (I really need to work on clothing...)

    Day 2:

    After waking up, preparing for the day, and breaking camp, we were off on the AZT again. The sun was shining, the sky was clear, but the trail was still pretty muddy due to melting snow. As we progressed through the day, the mud wasn't as big of a problem. The section along General Springs is awesome! The water was flowing great and the vegetation near the spring was very lush. As the sun warmed us, our spirits were lifted as we cruised through the pines. This was a great payoff after a wet and cold night.

    We climbed out of the canyon and continued towards East Clear Creek. We stopped along a forest road, had some lunch, and enjoyed the wide open spaces dashed with Ponderosa along this section of the trail. Eventually we descended into the canyon which East Clear Creek flows through and crossed the creek. On the climb out we ran into another thru hiker named Mark, who was leap frogging with a bike and a car along the AZT. We stopped and talked with him for a while. He turned out to be a very experienced thru hiker, he said he was "one state short of a triple crown", so I tried to pick his brains as much as possible about pack weight, shoes, and other things related to backpacking. He was a really nice guy and we wish him the best on his adventures! We were all pretty stoked to have met someone with that much experience along the trail.

    We finished the climb out of the Canyon and headed towards the Jeep. The views which extend to the other side of the canyon were spectacular! You could see the tops of pines for miles along the top of the Rim. We eventually reached the Jeep and headed back to the Washington Park TH to pick up the truck, before returning to the valley.

    We all really enjoyed this hike. It wasn't too strenuous, but at times it had me catching my breath. The Rim is one of my favorite places in Arizona, so it was really fun to be able to climb it and hike back into it. Meeting 2 thru-hikers along the way was also a huge plus for the trip. We got wet and cold, but we still had plenty of fun!

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