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This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Massacre Falls Loop - First Water TH, AZ

no permit
216 11 2
Guide 11 Triplogs  2 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Phoenix > Superstitions NW
2.6 of 5 by 7
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Difficulty 3 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance Loop 6.85 miles
Trailhead Elevation 2,290 feet
Elevation Gain 1,007 feet
Accumulated Gain 1,375 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 4 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 13.73
Interest Off Trail Hiking, Seasonal Waterfall & Perennial Waterfall
Backpack Yes
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Collective Slideshow
29  2017-04-16 KBKB
89  2017-03-25
Massacre Grounds Upper First Water Loop
9  2017-03-25
Massacre Grounds Upper First Water Loop
30  2015-12-20
Reverse Flatiron
17  2013-11-30 AZLumberjack
20  2013-02-02 Kel1969
5  2012-01-07 mazatzal82
11  2011-12-15 Mike_Fels
Page 1,  2
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Feb, Jan, Dec, Nov → 8 AM
Seasons   Autumn to Spring
Sun  7:30am - 5:40pm
Route Scout App
Official Route
3 Alternative
Nearby Area Water
Red Hills Needle Canyon
Red Hills Needle Canyon
0.0 mi away
13.4 mi
1,422 ft
Second Water - Black Mesa cut Loop
Second Water - Black Mesa cut Loop
0.0 mi away
9.3 mi
462 ft
First Water Tributaries 2947 Loop
First Water Tributaries 2947 Loop
0.0 mi away
4.3 mi
815 ft
Superstition Wilderness - GET #1
Superstition Wilderness - GET #1
0.0 mi away
30.3 mi
5,091 ft
Boulder Canyon Loop from First Water TH
Boulder Canyon Loop from First Water TH
0.0 mi away
11.3 mi
1,560 ft
Old West Boulder Canyon Ridge
Old West Boulder Canyon Ridge
0.0 mi away
10.5 mi
3,300 ft
Massacre Grounds Upper First Water Loop
Massacre Grounds Upper First Water Loop
0.0 mi away
6.7 mi
1,380 ft
Aylor's Arch
0.0 mi away
10.3 mi
1,790 ft
Battleship Mountain - Superstitions
Battleship Mountain - Superstitions
0.0 mi away
11.8 mi
2,100 ft
Black Mesa Loop - Superstition Mtns
Black Mesa Loop - Superstition Mtns
0.0 mi away
9.0 mi
1,125 ft
[ View More! ]
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
Amazing views & Waterfalls
by azhunt2012

Likely In-Season!
Overview: An excellent mini adventure to Massacre Falls through a hidden tributary of First Water Creek. Then looping a return past the old Massacre Trailhead. A GPS unit loaded with the Default Route will be very helpful in getting you to Massacre Falls.

Hike: From the First Water Trailhead follow the Dutchman Trail #104 for 1.3 miles to the first major crossing. Here you turn right off trail and follow the creek. This tributary flows almost as hardy as First Water itself.

You have to do a little bushwhacking as you follow First Water Creek for about 0.2 mile until you turn southwest up the draw. Caution should be used during stormy conditions. You need to watch for flash flooding. After the turn, follow the draw up through a small streambed that is overgrown with catclaw, Teddybear Cholla, and other nasty things that tend to stick you. This continues for about 0.7 miles to the first saddle. From this point you can see Massacre Falls, a dark vertical stripe that is 1.2 miles to the west. Continue down the draw and back up through the saddle across some easy rock face terrain. Proceed down one last time to the bottom of Massacre Grounds before you start the climb to the falls.

Next comes the ascent to the falls. When the creek is running you can hear the falls in the distance. Finding the falls is nothing difficult, however it can be a route-finding challenge. Generally, the most traveled route gets you to the falls. It would be advisable to study the map to understand the route. Two or three cairned routes get you to the falls and one takes you far away to West Boulder Canyon.

At this point you can see pleasant views of rolling hills, unique rock formations, and the rugged beauty of Superstition Mountain. Upon reaching the falls, intermittent cascades tumble over a wide cliff face after heavy rains.

After an enjoyable break at the base of the falls, follow the Massacre Trail back to the old Massacre Trailhead (it's the fence line) that is now closed. When in season, wildflowers dominate the foothills at the trail's end. There is an old road along the fence line to your right that will return to FR-78 after some traversing across easy lower desert terrain. You can see the overflow parking lot for First Water TH in the distance (about3/4 mile). There is a restroom with no water. From there you can pick up the Dutchman's Trail# 104 on the north side of the road and follow it to the First Water Trailhead.

    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
    page created by azhunt2012 on Feb 06 2010 6:10 pm
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