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Geronimo Trail #240, AZ

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493 68 3
Guide 68 Triplogs  3 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Payson > Payson N
2.5 of 5 by 14
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance One Way 3.2 miles
Trailhead Elevation 5,480 feet
Elevation Gain 355 feet
Accumulated Gain 654 feet
Avg Time One Way 1.5 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 5.38
Backpack Possible & Connecting
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14  2019-09-02
Webber Turkey Spring Loop
9  2019-07-06
Geronimo Turkey Milk
8  2019-06-08
Milk Ranch Point Loop
11  2019-06-08
Milk Ranch Point Loop
15  2019-04-17
Geronimo Turkey Milk
18  2019-04-10
Red Geronimo Milk
8  2018-09-02
Geronimo-Turkey-West Webber
15  2018-09-01
Red Geronimo Milk East Pine Bear
Page 1,  2,  3,  4,  5,  6
Author AZHikr4444
author avatar Guides 7
Routes 0
Photos 632
Trips 83 map ( 529 miles )
Age 48 Male Gender
Location Cave Creek, AZ
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Preferred   Oct, Apr, May, Mar → 8 AM
Seasons   ALL
Sun  6:10am - 6:30pm
Official Route
25 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
Pine TH is just down the road...
by AZHikr4444

I hesitate to write a negative guide of any trail on the Rim, so perhaps I had too high expectations for this one. After doing a little homework, phrases such as "beautiful trail", "little used" (read: solitude), and "expansive views" compelled me to have visions of a quiet stroll along the base of the beautiful Rim, dodging elk as I soaked in the views in every direction. Okay maybe not so dramatic. Perhaps it is just that the Forest Service and I have a slight difference of opinion when it comes to the definition of a "trail" as opposed to "Forest Road".

Geronimo Trail #240 is accessed by hiking a quick 1/4 mile section of the Highline from the Geronimo TH, located on FS 440 2 miles from FS64 (Control Road). The TH is on the east side of the road and consists of a pullout with a FS board explaining the various trails in the area. As I strapped on my pack, five pickups and a huge Asplunda truck flew by at approximately 147 miles an hour, heading for Geronimo Camp, a private campground located just a quarter mile or so north of the TH.

To reach the Geronimo Trail, you first cross FS440, at the trail post with the Highline blaze, immediately cross West Webber Creek, then climb a short distance to a sign bolding proclaiming you are 1/4 of a mile from the Geronimo intersection. The Highline is faint as it climbs toward this junction, but is intermittently cairned and not terribly difficult to follow. Soon you will reach the terminus, where the Highline will bank west on it's 8 mile last leg (or first depending on your direction of travel) to the Pine TH. To your right is another FS sign explaining that it is 2 miles to the Turkey Springs #217 trail, and 3 miles to the West Webber Trail. Just a few feet down a slight hill and, yep, you are standing on a Forest Road. To your right is a dirt berm, blocking any further access south on the road.

There are many trails in Arizona that follow old Forest Service roads, stock roads, historic cavalry trails, etc. Those roads usually range from extremely rocky two-tracks to faint single path foot trails. I am pretty sure most two wheel drive vehicles with only moderate clearance could have driven the Geronimo Trail, and it's offshoots listed above. This was a rocky but definite forest road, probably maintained by pickup trucks loaded with ATVs. Incidentally, all the trails that I followed in this area appeared to be blazed with the same diamond marker as the Highline. Ya know, just to make it interesting.

The Geronimo road heads north-northwest, climbing gently. There are some nice views of the Rim as the forest opens up in some areas. These will help push you onward. The road will swell up and down for the rest of it's journey, a fairly easy walk before it banks sharply east, and a short time later, ends at the junction with the Turkey Spring Trail #217. Which is a Forest Road. Another very good forest road. Down the hill to the south, you will see a tube fence and what appears to be the upper Geronimo Camp. Yep, you probably could have driven right up here.

Here, the Geronimo Trail ends, however, the offshoots are worth a brief mention. A FS sign at the junction displays mileage: 1/8 of a mile to Turkey Springs, 1/8 to West Webber. Strange considering that the first sign at the Highline junction stated that the West Webber was a full mile farther than Turkey Springs! Taking this trail north-northwest, you will first notice the junction with the East Webber Trail. Then a short distance later, the West Webber.

Turkey Spring is located right off the trail. It consists of a pipe emptying into a large round wooden basin. A spur trail heads off northeast. At first I thought this was the Turkey Spring Trail, however, there is a FS sign tacked to a tree across from the trough which displayed this as being the Turkey Spring Trail intersection. I followed this spur as it climbed it's way toward the Rim along a well repaired fence line. I noticed a large brown FS sign which explained that the fencing was needed to protect the spring from WATERBORNE PARASITES, such as Giardia. Perhaps it would have been more logical to place this sign next to the spring. Maybe then hikers, overheated from walking on forest road "trails", would not be tempted to splash their faces, containing certain mucus membranes, with the spring water. I did not follow this spur any further, instead deciding to try out the East Webber in hopes of making a loop back to the Highline. A guide I read of this trail stated it was a "beautiful, little-used trail following Webber Creek". I walked back down the hill on the Turkey Springs trail to the East Webber intersection. The trail heads east, drops down and crosses Webber Creek (dry), and then turns into, yep, a Forest Service Road. I believe this is the "pack trail" as shown on the topo, so I'm sure it turns nice and follows the creek later on. I followed it only a mile or so before I ran into a smattering of pickup trucks parked right in the middle of the trail. One had a full size very detailed mannequin in the bed. At least, I hope it was a mannequin.

This was enough for me, and I returned the way I came. I was serenaded on my return hike, not by the whistling melodies of songbirds or the bugling of elk, but the incessant buzz of chainsaws as the Asplunda crews denuded the forest around Camp Geronimo.

I would rate this hike as Fair, just to be..fair. There are some good views of the Rim and the only actual person I saw was a mannequin, therefore not really a person. So there was solitude. However, the Pine TH is just down the road, which I believe makes for much better hiking.

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2006-05-14 AZHikr4444

    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 37 deeper Triplog Reviews
    Geronimo Trail #240
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    Milk Ranch Point Loop
    We started from Red Rock Springs TH and did this loop CCW, I have only done it the other way. Getting the Highline section done early was the aim. Humidity was certainly a factor during the earlier hours, though. Once we reached Geronimo the stream of trail runners would begin. We breaked along West Webber Creek, below Turkey Spring. Had a snack and replenished my water supply that dwindled surprisingly fast. The stroll through old Pine and Maples, dotted with raspberries along the creek, was it's usual delightful self. Before the climb up the rim, we stopped and chatted with some of the trail runners, and let them go ahead of us. The climb up on West Webber was enjoyable. Switch backs and shade was all we could ask for, and we would eventually catch the crew of runners and start down Donahue together after the brief road walk. Once on the lower, steeper reaches of Donahue and back on the Highline, it was getting warm. Thunder in the distance led to clouds overhead and a break from the sun. By the time we started back down on Red Rock Springs, the big drops started to fall and we would finish out in a downpour mixed with hail. Temps dropped about 20 degrees and we were soaked upon reaching the TH. The cool down was much appreciated. Had a great time in Rim Country today.
    Geronimo Trail #240
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    Highline - Rim View Fail - Webber - Donahue
    Me and my squad of one, launched from the Pine TH on a glorious Saturday morning.

    This was my first time on this portion of the re-routed Highline #31, since starting the AZT in 2010. It was a clear and pleasant jaunt all the way to the Geronimo TH on this well manicured track. One AZ Black buzzworm woke us up about 5 miles in, sunning itself in the trail. We lounged in the shade by the babbling Webber Creek before continuing on the Highline.

    The plan was to loop on the Rim View Trail - BSA, using a 4 year old @Grasshopper/ @Tough_boots track. It started out easy enough following the trail and metal poles. This was probably some scouts work for a merit badge. I don't think it's seen any love since it completion. 1 mile in, we lost the poles and any sign of a trail. We searched higher than the track and found one last pole. In shorts and wasting time with 3ish miles left into the unknown, we retreated.

    The Highline back to Gerinimo #240 and the to the gem of the hike, East Webber #289. The forest is beautifully thick with maples. As an added treat, the creek was running up to and past where this trail meets up with the BSA Milk Ranch Trail. After this intersection, the trail gets...steep. We bagged the top a bit after 5pm.

    First time on the Donahue #27. Clear and OK up top, gets a bit tight and rocky at the bottom. It was good to be back on the Highline superhighway to the TH.

    Great weather in the Rim country made this a good one for me.
    Geronimo Trail #240
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    Highline - Rim View Fail - Webber - Donahue
    Bruce had a medium and large loop option. A hunter tricked us with a slew of coyote calls only 1.6 mi into the hike in the well groomed forest. The Highline/AZT rolled like a highway so I opted for the longer option with Rim View Trail.

    Rim View Trail
    Started off cool and looked promising. Tall stakes led the way. We went over a slick rock area. Then it got fuzzy in a ravine with lots of downfall. Around another bend and the stakes began to fade. Hanks route was getting into thicker stuff with small cairns. Backtracked a tad and searched out the stakes. They were taking us high up and nothing was looking promising. Bruce wanted to turn the ship around and my leg shouldn't be in this terrain yet so the decision to head back was easy.

    West Webber Trail
    Dreamy as always. Temps dropped into the low sixties and shade of the pines took over.

    Only encountered 6 people. 1 hiker finishing as we started. 2 runners on #31. 2 camping near Geronimo. 1 camping at the Pine TH.

    Mostly great temps, toasty midday. We'll get the Rim View Trail another day. Longer hike, not difficult.

    Pacific Rose apples are bomb diggity! Had an October carmel apple feel, sans carmel... smooth, consistent flavored, pure joy, no regrets
    Geronimo Trail #240
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    Got in a nice quickie camp trip and hike. We drove up Saturday late afternoon and had dinner at THAT Brewery up in Pine, first time there. Good food, and beer selections were awesome, we got the sampler to try out a few different kinds. We found a great car camp spot along FR 440 about a mile before the trailhead and setup a fairly spartan camp since it was just a quick overnight. Sunday morning we loaded up and headed for the Geronimo TH, we got started a bit after 8. Geronimo trail is nice, good gain but never too steep. We saw about 2 dozen elk along the way, most were up closer to Webber creek. The Webber trail was a bit overgrown but nothing too bad, I did count about 15 downed logs along the way to step over or around. Once we got close to the creek there was a feeling like Narnia would be right around the corner, it was reminiscent of my trips up to the Pacific Northwest with pines, spruce, ferns, and berry bushes all over the place. We made the junction with the BSA Rim View trail and started making the trip up. I had read in previous descriptions that this was not completed yet, I guess I was hopeful it would be in better condition since it has been a few years. We found the way up OK, thin trail but there was occasional tags in the trees to guide us. Once we reached about 6300' the trail completely disappeared, and we were basically doing the bushwhack on a fairly steep slope. My partner was none too pleased about this course, and the going was slow. We were planning to bail from the trail and find a way down just as the trail came back and was actually pretty nice. We did divert down the BSA Lower Miller trail since we were short on time to do the whole loop at this point. The Lower Miller trail was great, especially compared to what we had been on...the only bad thing was that the trail put us right on the back door to the Boy Scout camp. We tried to skirt the camp as best as we could, but it seems like we kept getting pulled back in. Thankfully there was no one there that we saw, and we made our way back to the forest boundary without incident. The berry bushes at the TH were fairly picked over, so we just had a victory brew and headed back home. Great area I have never been to before!

    Some Indian Paintbrush blooming, and the berry vines had some color too.
    Geronimo Trail #240
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    Milk Ranch Point Loop
    Stepped out for one of my favorite Rim Country loops this a.m. Went clockwise, although I'd recommend CCW this time of year. Lots of rocky terrain today, aside from the recently cleared segment of Highline around the Donahue junction. #294 is like a mini Y-Bar. I'd forgotten how much I like Donahue. It offers a nice climb up the rim then flattens out through a pine forest before ending at MRP Rd. West Webber #228 is always the highlight of this loop. There's plenty of shade under those old growth Maple & Oak trees and a reliable water source in the creek. Raspberries are already gone, unfortunately. Spooked a large herd of elk on Geronimo and could later hear them calling to each other for several minutes, which was kind of cool. By the time I jumped on Highline, the 62 degrees I started in was now 90 degrees with nearly zero shade, as much of the Western Highline is. I ended up using a water bottle I picked up off the trail to collect water at Pine Spring to dump on my head. Finished up back at Red Rock Spring TH. Distance of this loop is slightly shorter now due to a Highline/Donahue re-route. Overall it's a great loop that allows you to sample a handful of trails while offering great views, diverse flora, abundant fauna & a lush shaded oasis along West Webber.
    Geronimo Trail #240
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    Geronimo #240 to West Webber #228
    Hiking with the youngster again this morning. Wanted something a little more kid friendly so I could get more milage out of him and then I remembered how much he enjoyed this one back in November. FRs 199, 64 & 440 are all in good shape and dry, aside from creek crossings (Bray @ 64 & Webber @ 440). Started at Geronimo TH and hiked Highline > Geronimo > Turkey Spring > up and across West Webber Creek > Milk Ranch Point West > Geronimo > Highline back to TH. Took a snack break along West Webber. Tons of water flowing from every creek and drainage possible. Tread was a mix of dry and mud with a few patches of snow. Got sprinkled on briefly but otherwise it was mostly overcast and warm. It was fairly green and looking like early spring until reaching West Webber Creek where it suddenly got gray and dreary, but we still enjoyed ourselves.
    Geronimo Trail #240
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    Geronimo #240 to West Webber #228
    First snow fall of the season so I had to take the youngster out for a walk in the woods. Figured this would be a good place for an easy hike that has a little fall foliage accompanied by snow. The sun was shining which made mid to high 30's feel warmer. The trees were shedding both ice and leaves and the melt fog was rising in spots. The trails were entirely mud with a few deeper snow pockets in shaded areas. Perfect for a 6yr old boy, I think he enjoyed the mud more than anything. We kept a slow but steady pace so I could keep an eye on him and take plenty of pics. West Webber was flowing with fresh melt but a lot of the fall foliage is now on the ground. The Rim was looking stunning with it's new coating in the sunshine. The eastern portion seemed to have a significant amount of snow. Despite being wet and muddy, he asked for a return trip to West Webber creek as soon as we arrived back at Geronimo TH.
    Geronimo Trail #240
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    Milk Ranch Point Loop
    Had to take advantage of great weather and hit one of my rim country favorites. It was a tad warmer than I anticipated but the clear, sunny skies made for great views. Every tank, spring and creek had more water present than my previous trip. Enjoyed a nutrition break along Webber Creek. It's still a little early for fall foliage down there and mostly green. Some of the younger Oaks and Maples next to the trail are starting to change. About 2 weeks from now the canyon will begin to light up with reds and yellows, I'll be sure to return then. I saw plenty of elk and even got close to a juvenile grazing near Geronimo. Other than the wildlife, I didn't see a soul on any of the trails all day.
    Geronimo Trail #240
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    The forecast called for perfect weather to knock out a 20-miler. Cool temps and an early morning fog sitting over the rim gave this hike an autumn feel. I like the new route through Pine Canyon. East Rim Trail was it's usual sweat inducing self, although the soil and rocks seemed to be looser this time. I followed Joe's recent route through the locust forest atop MRP and found it much more pleasant than my previous trip. There was even something resembling a trail. There were quite a few hikers and backpackers, more numerous as I got closer to the Pine TH. About a mile West of Red Rock Spring a group of 6 young adults going the opposite direction stopped me to inquire about a spring that might be ahead. All but one was dressed in all black, none had on day packs & were only carrying a liter water bottle each. I informed them the spring was dry and they might want to consider turning around. Pine TH was packed upon my return, with fully automatic gunfire echoing through the canyon. Awesome hike and another beautiful day in Rim Country!

    Oak leaves along West Webber Trail were starting to change.
    Geronimo Trail #240
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    Milk Ranch Point Loop
    Another late start, another warm hike. It was a sudden and unplanned trip so I went with a familiar loop. Although the extreme heat warning didn't extend to this region, it was by far my hottest rim country hike of the summer. Temps reached 95 degrees and there was no break from the sun. Heading up Donahue I questioned myself once or twice but knew that Webber Creek wasn't far and soon I'd be cooling off. I appreciated every morsel of shade. Once at the creek I found a nice little shaded pool and soaked in it while enjoying an extended nutrition/rehydration break. The creek was lined with coneflowers and columbines. I filtered 3 liters of water and drenched all of my clothes before leaving. I knew the very sun-exposed, mid-afternoon section of Highline I had awaiting me. By the time I reached Pine Spring, it looked like an oasis. Shade, tall green grass and although it's nothing more than a muddy seep covered in elk tracks, I was glad to have found water. Using an empty water bottle, I widened a small trench and funneled water into the bottle to pour over my head and soak my shemagh to keep wrapped around my head and neck. Certainly great views along this segment of Highline, but at the cost of being totally exposed to the sun. After Pine Spring I seemed to have found a 'second wind' and set a good pace I kept up with until I reached the Red Rock Spring TH finish. Overall it was an enjoyable hike. Physically my body responded to the stress of heat and sun better than I could've imagined (other than a few small sunburn spots). I drank 6 liters of water during the hike and was well hydrated before starting out, a decision that paid off well. Although I did hike on an empty stomach until reaching Webber Creek which was probably not a good idea. Didn't see much wildlife today, aside from a lone adolescent white tail. Encountered one other hiker about 1.5 miles in but that was it. Used Route Scout for the first time and all went well. I like that it keeps recording in background and the split stats for every mile. I used this feature as a reminder to slow down a little and not get overheated. I also liked that it notified me when my battery was getting low, cool feature. Hit THAT Brewery for a black bean burger and AZ Trail Ale immediately afterwards to replenish some much needed calories. Another good day in Rim country.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    FR / Dirt Road / Gravel - Car Okay

    To hike
    Follow 87 north from Payson to Control Road (FS 64). Follow this dusty road approximately 6 miles, across a small single lane bridge, to a sharp left at FS440. Follow FS440 2 miles to the Geronimo TH pullout on the right.
    1 TB Flash Drive... $40
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