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West Boulder Saddle, AZ

423 76 2
Guide 76 Triplogs  2 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Phoenix > Superstitions SW
3.1 of 5 by 23
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Difficulty 4 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance Round Trip 3.45 miles
Trailhead Elevation 2,200 feet
Elevation Gain 1,485 feet
Accumulated Gain 1,505 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 10.98
Backpack Yes & Connecting
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6  2019-03-23
Robbers Roost - Superstitions
12  2019-01-22
Superstition Ridgeline
9  2019-01-22
Superstition Ridgeline
15  2018-03-04
Dacite Roost Cave
8  2018-03-04
Dacite Roost Cave
6  2018-03-04
Dacite Roost Cave
11  2017-11-20
Robbers Roost - Superstitions
14  2017-03-27
Connecting the Y - Wave Cave/W Boulder Sdl Lp
Page 1,  2,  3,  4,  5,  6
author avatar Guides 2
Routes 0
Photos 292
Trips 35 map ( 207 miles )
Age 37 Male Gender
Location Tolleson, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Feb, Mar, Oct, Nov → Early
Seasons   Autumn to Early Spring
Sun  6:11am - 6:28pm
Official Route
14 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
Over then UP UP UP!

This hike is required to access the quickest trail to Superstition Peak (5057) and to access Dacite Mesa from the west.

This hike starts from the Carney Springs Trailhead just 1.2 miles south on FS77 from the Peralta Trailhead parking lot. There is small turn-around there for parking which is small and limited. However this trailhead's usage is nothing compared to its neighbor so don't worry. There is no sign for this trailhead. The access to the road has been gated off to keep motorized vehicles out, but is open to foot travel.

Once you walk through the gate follow the old rough rocky road north heading to the 2 ravines through some old campsites, there's a lot of rock campfire pits everywhere on the sides of this road. Keep following the road until you run into a barbwire fence, that is the wilderness boundary. There's a slot through the fence which states to close gate behind you, but it isn't really a gate, more like a walk through of a barbwire fence. From here the trail is pretty defined and shouldn't be hard to follow until you come to a cairn. Look to your left. There is a man made rock and concrete fountain structure which is Carney Spring of which the trailhead is named after. This used to be a former picnic area. Old rusty cans of days passed linger around the area. The first time coming to this spring which only had a limited amount of old water (from rain) I saw a Gila Monster going to it for a drink. From this area is the hardest part finding the right trail. The trail is somewhat overgrown looking, but from the spring your general direction should be north east, to the ravine on your right. The pipe running behind the spring should be on your left. Once ascending the west side of the ravine there is some bedrock in areas, but was pretty well cairned. There was even white paint lines which I'm not a big fan of, but helps. It's pretty steep in areas so be careful. Head up, until you come to a saddle, but don't get too excited yet, its a false saddle, and you will be able to see that you pretty much only hit halfway going up, by this point you'll be panting... Still a nice view from here, a good place to stop, catch a breathe and hydrate. The trail is cairned directly north and the trail is visible, so just follow this last stretch of climb to the top, west boulder saddle.

From the top at West Boulder Saddle, the trail heading west on your left is to the Superstition Ridgeline (to Superstition Peak) and beyond if you want to do the ridgeline hike. The one on your right (east) is more faint but heads over to Fremont Saddle. You can also head down a near extinct trail and head into West Boulder Canyon to Ruth's Willow Spring. I would rate this hike next to the cave trail(descending) but only a little tougher since it's all uphill! Enjoy the climb in this true wilderness...

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

This is a moderately difficult hike.

Gate Policy: If a gate is closed upon arrival, leave it closed after you go through. If it is open, leave it open. Leaving a closed gate open may put cattle in danger. Closing an open gate may cut them off from water. Please be respectful, leave gates as found.

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

2006-08-09 IRIE_LION
    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 31 deeper Triplog Reviews
    West Boulder Saddle
    rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5rated 5
    Dacite Roost Cave
    Kelly invited John and I to get out for a hike. I've only been out for a couple of easy hikes since the new year so I wanted to do something hard. Plan A was 5057, my suggestion, but it was clear early that I didn't have the conditioning to get me there. So we settled on something fun instead.

    From the Carney Springs TH we hiked up the WB saddle, then headed west toward Robbers Roost, played around in there a bit, continued down to Fremont Saddle, out to the Weavers Needle overlook, then back on the Cave Trail to the Peralta TH where Kelly managed to find us a ride back to the car. We would have finished the loop on foot, but I was toast and we all knew it.

    I played catch up most of the hike, hence the lower break time in my trip log than Kelly's. I knew it would be difficult after a long layoff, but not this difficult. I have some work to do.

    Kelly and John, thank you for a fun time, and thank you for your patience. In spite of the pain and struggles, I really did have a great time.
    West Boulder Saddle
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
    Dacite Roost Cave
    the plan b hike we did today most closely resembles the dacite super loop with a couple of detours
    got going around 0700
    up to west boulder saddle - i had forgotten how much fun that is
    decided along the way to hit robbers roost and go down the cave trail
    i've only been on the section between west boulder saddle and fremont saddle once
    really enjoyed seeing it again, especially the visit to robbers roost
    great geology, rock formations and views from up there
    went out to the pinyon tree for a snack break
    surprised to have it to ourselves
    returned on cave and bluff springs trails
    could see the hordes on peralta :o
    since we had parked at carney, we hitched a ride from peralta, not wanting to walk the dusty dirt road
    carney was the usual circus full of wave cavers
    hadn't been on any of these trails in a few years
    nice morning for some exploration and great scenery with ray and john
    thanks, guys :)

    West Boulder Saddle
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Connecting the Y - Wave Cave/W Boulder Sdl Lp
    A beautiful day for a hike! We started off this morning from Carnie Springs TH, and arrived at Wave Cave under an hour later. We stopped briefly to take pictures of the coiled rattlesnake that was just off trail. We had no less than 15 people tell us about that snake. The snake was seriously PO'd that 30 people were walking by him, but not mad enough to move, I guess! We had a bite to eat at wave cave, and took the requisite surfing pictures. :) It was our first time here, after all! I kept thinking about that trip log that mentioned a board game convention had 50 people sleep over in the cave. Yikes. I mean the cave is big, but that is a LOT of people. After our snack, it was upward and onward to our real adventure!!

    I am a lazy sort. I really wanted to see wave cave and west boulder saddle. In the same trip. And I didn't want to lose all the elevation we had just gained. So instead, we followed Joe & Eagle's route [ custom map ] where they cut up the ravine from wave cave. It was simple enough, but bush whacking is slow, especially with friends that maybe didn't understand what you said when you said there is no trail. Alas. It was a slog, but worth not going down and back up (see, lazy!!). I am very thankful for the rattles on rattlesnakes, as I almost stepped on one while bushwhacking. There is nothing like that sound!! The perfect warning signal!

    We were ecstatic to see the top of the canyon and flat ground. :) A few more steps and we met up with the ridgeline trail (yay! a trail!). I was amazed at the sheer number of cairns on the ridgeline trail. Not that I am complaining, but wowzers! In no time, we were at the West Boulder Saddle. We enjoyed the silly sign there. But hey, it's descriptive! It needs a refresh, though, because the letters are fading out. Then, DOWN DOWN DOWN. That is some steep down. I guess it's no less steep than the wave cave trail, and I have to say I'll take the rock of west boulder saddle trail over the slippery dirt of wave cave on the steep parts, any day. It was pretty anticlimactic, just the usual downward momentum. We enjoyed the views and the plethora of wild flowers!! :) We saw a million people on wave cave trail, but past that, we saw no one from when we left the wave cave until we were almost back to the car. And wouldn't you know it, they were coming down from wave cave.

    Before we knew it, we were back at the car, ready to get back to life's commitments!!!! :O ;)

    Wildflowers were everywhere!!! So beautiful! The rainy spring bounty!
    West Boulder Saddle
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Cave Weavers Robbers Loop
    Enjoyed the route, the weather I could do without. Bruce covered our day top to bottom.

    Putting this route together I was looking to extend Robbers as much as possible. Rain hampered the mega loop so we stuck with a respectable loop. The key to the loop was getting down from Weaver's Overlook to Terrapin. Low and behold I stumbled upon a route by @juliachaos that helped bridge the gap!

    Heading north on Weaver's Overlook Route Scout showed the turn coming up soon. My waypoint rattled off turn into the abyss. Surprisingly the turn was cairned and looked well traveled. Tensions eased a touch. With all the recent rain everything was very green. The route is fairly well cairned with a hiccup or two. We wanted to follow it out but needed to get over to Terrapin in the Crosscut vicinity.

    After a busy week I stumbled upon the rest of the story... backwards. @Nonot has a great description for Barks Canyon - Complete Route. Soon that led me to @Fritzski on his Barks Upper Canyon Loop. Which in turn he put together from the Grand Poobah Jack Carlson.

    Based on the above two mentioned descriptions the route off Weaver's Overlook down to Barks used to be a bloodbath. I faired well in shorts. Abandoning the route directly over to Terrapin there was one nasty section. Bruce led since he wore pants. I followed step by step without issue. The route down was more fun than a concern. Hope to explore the area more someday.

    Paint brush, blue dicks, fairy duster among others. Saw a bunch underway that could bust a move in a week and change the horizon.
    West Boulder Saddle
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
    Cave Weavers Robbers Loop
    We did this loop starting from the Lost Goldmine Trailhead. The first car in the lot, shared only with 20+ porta-potties for Sunday's marathon.

    We opted for a CCW loop, starting on Bluff Springs #235. This is always a good way to get the heart started first thing in the morning, climbing cardiac hill.

    I'd never been on the Cave Trail #235 going this direction. I think I like it better. Lots of interesting rock formations, the Devils Bathtub and then climbing up the Devils Slide. The cairn collection seems to have been slimmed down at "The Cave".

    Joe found us a well cairned and used track down the east side into Barks Canyon. We tried to play out the well used path, but it started taking us in the wrong direction. We reversed our direction and bushwhacked over to Bluff Saddle.

    Now on Terrapin #234, the off and on rain, was on for a while now. This trail has seen a very recent and welcomed trimming.

    On the Dutchman #104, we were looking for some shelter from the rain and wind to have some lunch. No luck.

    It finally let up a bit on Peralta #234 enough to have a brief bite.

    Also the first time climbing to the Robbers Roost from Peralta, a nice change up. We had the Roost to ourselves.

    The sky was starting to get noticeably darker. Starting down my least favorite trail in the Supes, West Boulder Saddle, the deluge hit. Nothing like hiking down a steep, loose, rocky path, while holding an umbrella with glasses that are fogged up.

    Another fun day in the Supes....
    West Boulder Saddle
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Ridgeline - 5057 - 5024
    Back for some more Ridgeline therapy, but this time with plenty of sunshine and a couple of peaks!

    We started off at a fairly brisk pace heading up Siphon Draw, but we bonked pretty quickly. :lol:

    This hike is much better with the views! But plenty of fun either way. :D

    It was a little warmer today than we are used to this time of year, but overall still really nice. Last time I brought over a gallon of water and used less than a liter, today I used all 3 liters that I brought. When that sun is beating down on you up on that ridge, you feel it.

    Water is still available at 2 points along the Ridgeline trail, a drainage shortly after 5024, and the drainage you cross after dropping down from the ridge after 5057. Water also available off-trail below West Boulder Saddle.
    West Boulder Saddle
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Superstition Ridgeline
    I've been wanting to do this hike for a while and with the forecast showing a relatively cool day with temperatures increasing significantly the next couple of days, I figured I better get it out of my system. I'm glad I did. I can't imagine doing this trip when the temps are in the 80s.
    I had packed a little on the heavy side (20lbs pack). I was ready to spend the night up there if need be ;) I brought 5 liters of water and used 3.5.
    Started from Carney a little later than desired - 7:36AM. Trip up the to 5057 went fairly uneventful except for a wrong turn before I even hit the upslope :) I have done Siphon draw up to Flat Iron twice and I personally think the trip from Carney was a little more exhausting, just in a different way. Had a pretty good pace going though and passed two other groups.
    In the process of climbing 5057 I met a couple from Ohio, Terry and Janet who wanted to do the ridgeline, but were a little concerned about route finding and making the trip before sunset. I have previously done the majority of the ridgeline from the Flat Iron side, so I suggested that we join up.
    The trip from 5057 to Flatiron went really uneventful and we didn't really take any wrong turns. Seems like it is a bit easier to find the route from this side than from the Flat Iron side. When I did that we ended up on side paths that we had to backtrack a couple of times. I believe somebody wrote "if in doubt, seek higher grounds" in one of the trip reports on this hike. This is very true. When we were in doubt about the route we would go for the ridge itself and it worked out most of the time.
    There is a crevice not far from 5057 on the way to Flat Iron that looks intimidating, especially when coming from the Flat Iron side. This passage is actually pretty easy since the "steps" are placed in perfect position. Just go deep first and come back out if you are coming from the Flat Iron side. From the Carney side it's much more intuitive to see how you need to get down.
    An awesome hike. Bring plenty of water and start early.
    West Boulder Saddle
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
    Supes - Ridgeline Plus
    The plan was, the Turtle and I would start in the cool pre dawn hours and hike from West to East. We'd hit the Flatiron, 5024, come off the 5024 to the east and meet up with the ridgeline. Next 5057, where we'd meet up with Ray, starting from the Carney side.

    On the ride over, Denny mentioned that here was a missing hiker whose car had been found at The Mining Camp Restaurant. There appeared to be a rather large SAR contingent as we were walking through Lost Dutchman State Park.

    Atop the Flatiron, there was a lone chopper searching around the Siphon Draw area. When we got to the 5024, this was about the time they found the base jumper who had fallen 100' while climbing. So so sad.

    We hopped off the East side of 5024 to take a short cut to the Ridgeline. The route worked out pretty well. On the way to 5057, I got to see my second Gila Monster. So Cool.... Denny was trying to keep it all secret, walking right past it.

    I'd forgotten how big of a climb it was getting to the 5057'. At the chute, we met out first hikers on the Ridgline.

    Unbelievably, we had 5057 to ourselves. At this point I texted Ray letting him know where we were. He informed me that The Flu he'd been recovering from, had gotten the better of him, and his attempt to meet us at 5057 would not be. He made it to the false saddle on the way to Boulder and had to turn around. He said not to fear thought, he'd be back later with cold drinks! Yea Ray.

    East of 5057, we ran into our second on the Ridgeline. "You must be Ray's Friends" he said. It ended up being HAZ's own "Hiking_Fool" Mike, doing his own Ridgeline from the east. Good to meet you! I also ran into an ex-coworker a little farther down.

    On the decent to Carney we ran into a group of 8 backpackers. "You must be the guys that started at Flatiron". "Hey everybody, these are guys that started at flatiron!" Ray had turned us into celebrities. Denny's Hat no longer fit his head.

    As promised, the sickly Ray was waiting at Carney with a choice of cold beverages. What a guy and greatly appreciated.

    Good to finally get this end to end ridgeline completed. Thanks for joining Turtle aka Dickie.

    Bees bush was blooming and saw my first Poppies of the year
    West Boulder Saddle
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
    Robbers Roost to Cave Trail
    Nice to get back to RR after a few year hiatus. Always fun and now I think I can actually get in there without getting lost. We also went out and then back in the western "trapdoor" entrance. That was a first for me. Thanks for the hike, guys and for lunch, JJ! Fantastic weather today!
    West Boulder Saddle
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Work was mighty slow this week, and I have some personal days to burn before the end of the year....sounds like a hiking day to me. Dropped off the kids for their last day of school and then fought rush hour all the way out to the Carney TH. Started out a bit after 9 and made a brisk way up. I passed a hiker about a half mile in, last person I would see until I made the fence on the way out. I haven't hiked up this way for three years, it seems like the trail is a bit more manicured now, certainly there are many more cairns than my last trip. Made good time to the West Boulder Saddle and started heading west. Had to put my jacket back on shortly, all of the north side slopes were in shade and there was frost all around. Once I got up to about 3800', patches of actual snow left over from the Monday storm started appearing, and there was even some ice on a few boulders forcing me to slow down to avoid any mayhem. Big patches of snow above 4500', a few inches thick in spots. Few things quite as nice as getting to put those first footprints on virgin snow...Took a nice break up top enjoying the views and thumbing through the register. I had not realized quite how many people climb this every year, there are three new registers in here form when I made it up last. Once again, many Hazzers well represented. Made my way own, slowly at points, and eventually back to Carney and out to the truck. Met up with Mr. AZ for a second peak, I swung up to the Usery mountains and we got in Lone 2809. Fun little hike, great views of the Salt River, Four Peaks, and Goldfield mountains. Planned a few future reconnaissance trips...We scrambled out to the east end of the ridge after hitting the peak, nice little bench and shade tree up top.

    Permit $$
    AZ State Land Recreational Permits are available for an individual ($15.00), or a family limited to two adults and children under the age of 18 ($20.00).

    Land Parcel Map

    Map Drive
    High Clearance possible when dry

    To Carney Spring Trailhead
    7.6 miles east of the junction Idaho Rd / US-60. Turn Left on to FS77 which is Peralta Road. Follow FS77 5.6 miles to a left and up turnoff. Continue 0.6 miles to Carney Spring Trailhead.

    This trailhead and the first 0.5 miles is periodically enforced as being on State Land, see permit for info.
    2 easy ways to avoid the small lot and fee.
    - Lost Goldmine TH / +0.9 miles GPS Route
    - Peralta TH w/restrooms / +1.3 miles GPS Route

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 46.3 mi - about 1 hour 6 mins
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 95.8 mi - about 2 hours 12 mins
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 191 mi - about 3 hours 10 mins
    1 TB Flash Drive... $40
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