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Paradise Trail # 271, AZ

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Guide 34 Triplogs  2 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Globe > Queen V NE
3.5 of 5 by 17
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Difficulty 3 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance One Way 2.7 miles
Trailhead Elevation 3,000 feet
Elevation Gain 1,509 feet
Accumulated Gain 1,509 feet
Avg Time One Way 1.5 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 7.73
Interest Seasonal Waterfall, Perennial Waterfall, Seasonal Creek & Perennial Creek
Backpack Yes & Connecting
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
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3  2019-02-16 friendofThunderg
5  2019-02-03
Bull Basin Loop - Eastern Superstitions
8  2017-04-29
Bull Basin Loop - Eastern Superstitions
9  2017-03-28
Bull Basin Loop - Eastern Superstitions
15  2017-02-20
Bull Basin Loop - Eastern Superstitions
17  2017-02-20
Bull Basin Loop - Eastern Superstitions
10  2017-02-20
Bull Basin Loop - Eastern Superstitions
9  2017-02-12 adv_trev
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Author AZLOT69
author avatar Guides 168
Routes 247
Photos 7,293
Trips 1,818 map ( 15,596 miles )
Age 68 Male Gender
Location Gold Canyon, AZ
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Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Mar, Nov, Feb, Jan → 9 AM
Seasons   ALL
Sun  6:12am - 6:23pm
Official Route
9 Alternative
Flora Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
Gamble With Paradise
by AZLOT69

FR 287A is a single lane dirt track in fair condition. We stashed our mountain bikes at the trailhead for Trail 203 (the upper terminus of the Haunted Canyon Loop) then continued on approximately 1.8 miles to the trailhead for Paradise Trail 271. The trailhead has parking for several cars (we saw no cars or hikers the whole day) but is poorly marked. The trailhead signage is located 100 ft up a bare earth hill and is not visible from the road. Without GPS we may not have located the trail as quickly.

We loaded up and almost immediately entered a wonderful, refreshing environment with rich black soil, tree leaves covering the ground like a mid-fall day in New England, and with the smell of peat as if we had been transported to a different part of the United States. The trail was very easy to follow being broad and generally flat as it switched back and forth across the stream. The hike was one of the quietest hikes I've ever been on; no human sounds, no gravel/rocks under our feet, no distant sounds of aircraft or autos. It was almost quiet enough to hear your heart beating. We found plenty of flowing water in sections of the streambed. The first 1 1/4 miles are an easy stroll with a gain of 400 ft elevation. As we reached the upper end of Trail 271 we broke more and more above the tree line, the vegetation changes more to higher altitude desert growth and the soil yielded to the typical Arizona gravel. The rate of gaining elevation increased to a more typical climb. We found snow from a storm a week earlier and had some mischief with it. We wonder how long the "snow-cairns" will last.

We reached a crossing trail at a high spot with a view of the mine tailings in the distance. Our GPS and our dead reckoning indicated this to be the cross-trail to 203. Heading east we quickly lost the trail. In hindsight we are not sure there is a true connecting trial. GPS confirmed we were on or crossing this "trail" but it clearly was bushwhacking our way to the east. It was somewhat rough going. There were plenty on "cow pies" marking out avenues to take. We left cairns at what we felt were key spots to help somewhat for future hikers. At a barb wire fence we could see trail 203 off about 100 feet in the distance.

The downhill trail seemed to be the steepest terrain of the day but no big deal. As we descended the gravel gave way to improving moist soil and again we entered a world of quiet. Less water was in this stream bed. The last mile of the trail is almost level and is a easy, smooth, and again the smell of northern woods.

Our mountain bikes were pulled from the stash and be coasted downhill the final 1.8 miles to our truck. This is a truly a unique hike taking you into a lush environment not easily found in the southwest. The quiet is awesome! There is plenty of time spent above the tree line to view these mountains and rock features in a more remote section of the Superstitions.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

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2007-02-06 AZLOT69

    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 20 deeper Triplog Reviews
    Paradise Trail # 271
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    After a bit of a dry spell it was nice to get back to Miles TH. 287 through the mine is in great shape. 287a seemed a little rougher than I remember but still 2wd passable. It looked like it was recently graded which dug up a lot of small rocks so I felt like Ace Ventura bouncing along down the road.

    Paradise Trail is a real treat, absolutely beautiful, and with water flowing most of the way elevates this trail to a 5+ IMO. Passed a couple trail crews along the upper sections of Haunted Canyon Trail but other than that we saw no others. Took a break and had a snack near Tony Cabin Spring. Bull Basin Trail, as reported by others, is in nice shape. Not as groomed as Paradise and Haunted Canyon but very easy to follow. Really enjoyed this hike on this day :D
    Paradise Trail # 271
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    Rick's Son, Dustin is visiting from the U P Michigan, wanted to do some camping and hiking. We scouted out Miles TH last month and determined if we are to camp there it has to be during the week to have some solitude :) . Showed up mid morning on Monday and :o only one spot left to set up camp :pout: We made the best of the situation and it turned out, no problem, was all quite around us. :zzz: After we set up camp, gathered all the camp wood, we set out on West Pinto to Cuff Button and returned. Met a young lady heading up to Oak flats to set up camp, found out she was part of the Arizona Conservation Corps, and rest of the group was joining her on Tuesday. The plan was to scout out all the trails in the area, and process them for future trail maintenance this summer and have work done by next fall. :D Also all the other camp sites were occupied by Wilderness Volunteers planning on working this week on Trail Maintenance, Monday they finished Paradise Trail, Tuesday they were heading up Bull Basin Trail to the saddle. So looks and sounds like Miles TH will be busy hosting work crews this summer. According to their Web site, Champaign Trail is on the agenda this week. Tuesday Bull Basin Loop was our chosen hike. Wow hats off to all that has done this :) When they say steep, they mean steep !!! Got to Haunted Canyon finally :scared: took the side trip over to Tony's. While there we met 3 yes 3 state workers from the Fishery Dep't, checking if there were any fish my the stream next to the cabin, talk about time wasted management :( :? Great time can't wait to get back.
    Paradise Trail # 271
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    Kelly and I have been talking about doing something out this way and agreed on the Bull Basin Loop with a side trip to Tony Ranch. It was scheduled for Sunday, but rain got in the way. Monday looked better. John was looking for a hike so we invited him along too.

    Running water ruled the day. We initially thought that log crawling across a creek at the outset would keep our feet dry. :lol: A couple of dozen or more creek crossings later we didn't care about wet feet. Some of the creeks resembled rivers. Some sections of the trails resembled creeks. At the saddle near the start of the Paradise Trail, John noted that it was the first time all day we could not hear running water.

    The trails are in excellent shape. As noted in a couple of recent trip logs, they've been trimmed back nicely. A tiny bit of cat claw here and there, but easily avoidable. A little muddy here and there, more so at the saddle on Paradise trail, but a day or two of sunshine will make it all good.

    We took a nice break at the cabin on Tony Ranch. What little bit of sunshine we had at the outset gave way to overcast skies. Our wet feet could have used some sun. Instead, they started to get cold. Time to move. It was 37 degrees at the start and it didn't get anywhere close to the promised high in the low 60's.

    Wet, cloudy or cold, it didn't matter today; this was a fun hike. If you're on the fence about this one, or if you hiked it when it was bushy on Bull Basin trail, you should get out there. This is good hiking with the opportunity for much more. We all had fun.

    John and Kelly, it was great hiking with you!
    Paradise Trail # 271
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    ray and john had monday off, so we picked the best weather day of the holiday weekend to hike bull basin loop
    road was a little muddy, but ray had no issues on the drive in
    37 degrees around 7:30, starting out on west pinto trail
    came to our first crossing of rock creek and found a slick log to crawl over
    stayed dry on that one, but gave it up on the next 40 or so :lol:
    there was water flowing in every creek and drainage, and often on the trail
    the bigger crossings got pretty cold :o
    turned onto bull basin trail, which climbed to a saddle and then dropped down to haunted canyon trail
    took the side trip to the cabin as i had not seen it
    cool spot for a snack break
    headed back to the intersection with paradise trail, which also climbed to a saddle
    the initial descent was a little steep, rocky and wet, but soon moderated into a nice dirt path through the woods
    finished up and headed into superior for a late lunch at los hermanos
    fun hike on all new trails for me
    good company, too
    trails were in great shape - very little brush
    love seeing some new territory in the eastern superstitions
    thanks for driving, ray
    plenty more to do from miles trailhead, which is worthy of some wandering around to check out the old ranch stuff
    Paradise Trail # 271
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    I started my morning headed towards Rogers Trough to do White Mountain, but no vehicle is getting across Queen Creek right now and I saw first hand why. I pulled up behind a pickup who had a friend outside mulling over whether it was crossable. I kept thinking that there was no way that it was uncrossable and I even thought for a minute that the guy ahead of me might be being a little cautious and if he did not go, I was just going to go around him and try, but just then he went for it after his friend on the outside seemed to give him the thumbs up. He was done for as soon as he hit the water, his front end briefly went hood deep he lurched forward a little and then there he sat about bed deep in Queen Creek. I got out and said to his friend, "well I am not going this way," turned around and headed back to the 60 for a plan B.

    I figured I could not go wrong with Miles trailhead for a plan B, although, it did cross my mind that even that road may be impassable due to the rock slides that always occur out there after a big rain. I got lucky and it was clear sailing to the TH. Every drainage was flowing along the road and it was very apparent from the start that the area had been hammered recently. I ended up stopping before Miles and went in Paradise Trail to do a variation of the Bull Basin loop, but with Government Hill and its long ridgeline as an off trail linking route between the two trails. Paradise was a tremendous start to the day. It was nearly impossible to keep your feet dry on the trail, the creek was raging and trailside was one cascade after another, topped off by the main attraction which is less than a mile in. From the flowing water of Paradise, it was across the snow dusted ridgeline to Government Hill for some fantastic views. In particular, the Ancha are in rare form and look more like a range in Colorado right now due to the amount of snow its holding. From Government Hill it was down to Bull Basin, more cascades, more water and then the rugged detour up Rock Creek Trail to view its falling water highlight.

    It was impossible to stay dry going up Rock Creek, as it was just calming down from what looked to be a pretty intense little flash flood. The crossings were deep and fast, but all manageable. The horrible trail along the bench was probably worse anyways. Its a real shame the Forest Service decommissioned this trail, it was probably a good one in its day, now the falls are slowly becoming perhaps not worth the hassle. A couple stretches of the trail along the bench are becoming a tad brutal with acacia, deadfall and general overgrowth, during lower water this can be remedied through simply walking up the creek bed, however, that was not happening today. The hike back from the falls went much quicker, as I took up to wading more stretches of the creek when I could, rather than bushwhacking along its edge. Once I hit Bull Basin, it was a pretty quick hike back to the car and other than the fact that West Pinto looks nearly impossible to cross on foot right now, nothing overly exciting occurred.

    A great plan B!
    Paradise Trail # 271
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    I showed @lindaagm a few old favorites in the Eastern Supes today. We started at the Paradise Trail trailhead, hit Government Hill along the way to Haunted Canyon where we visited the cabin and then took the old and no longer maintained alignment of 203 to switch it up a little coming out of Haunted Canyon.

    The weather was perfect, there was just enough water for the dogs and all of the trails are in great shape. We only ran into one group all day and it was near the cabin. A little fall is still going on out there and I imagine with some rain today and tomorrow the hiking conditions will only improve. We did have to utilize the FR to complete out loop, but it was only about 1.5 miles.

    Thank you for still hiking with me Linda after I showed up 20 minutes late, with my fuel light on and no wallet.
    Paradise Trail # 271
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    Paradise/Government Hill/Bull Basin
    Over five years ago when I hiked the Bull Basin Loop the Bull Basin part was so overgrown (and I mean TERRIBLE!) I never once felt Tracey would have any interest in it so I never brought it up.

    But after reading FoTG's March triplog with a mention the trail was in good shape and Wally's Government Hill triplog, things were falling into place.

    And so with Government Hill being on my list for some time and Tracey reminding me she had never hiked on this side of the Superstition Wilderness we figured it was time.

    At Miles TH within an hour of sunrise it felt downright COLD... we could see our breath. Which meant we had a cool hike in Paradise up the Paradise Trail.

    Funny... because when I told Tracey we were in paradise she didn't realize we actually were on the Paradise Trail. (She figured it out 3 hours later when I made a comment about the Paradise Trail)

    Near the top end of the Paradise Trail we turned off at the cairn and headed up to the Government Hill ridge. With so many different trails or just as likely game trails we had to backtrack a number of times before reaching the ridge. But once on the ridge it was pretty obvious which route to take and in no time at all we were at the summit.

    I took the usual photos and video, signed the summit log and we moved on. It was a bit steep heading down to the Bull Basin Trail but it was just a matter of scanning 25-30' ahead and choosing the best route. Eventually we were following well-beaten game trails and it was easy enough.

    With all the deer tracks we'd seen by now we were wondering when they would appear. And that's just what happened... two deer appeared, and led us in just the right direction following the best path we'd seen all day (other than the actual Paradise Trail, which I might add was in great shape).

    Just above the saddle marking the high-point of the Bull Basin Trail we stopped for lunch. Next we began the descent on Bull Basin Trail. I have to say, now THIS is a real trail!. Absolutely NOTHING like 5 years ago, when there were many times I would go 50-100 feet without knowing if I was on the trail or not.

    So... compared to my experience 5 years ago, it was like paradise, which (as I mentioned above) is the point where Tracey realized we had not only felt like in paradise, we actually were ON the Paradise trail.

    The only time we encountered other footprints all day was when we reached the West Pinto trail... and they were prints leading in the direction away from Miles TH. Back at Miles we saw their vehicle and checked for a HAZ decal but found none.

    One last thought, not only was the Bull Basin Trail 100% better than 5 years ago, we raised no dust on the drive through the Pinto Mine complex... the road was oiled so thoroughly it was like pavement. (And of course the route through the mine has changed quite a bit as well... progress I guess.)

    Although we didn't travel the southern part of Bull Basin Trail down to Haunted Canyon, I believe it would be prudent to add an update to Fritzski's 2001 Bull Basin Loop hike description... it's no longer hell.

    Government Hill summit panorama
    Paradise Trail # 271
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    Tonys Haunted Bull Eyes Paradise
    We had a couple of choices for the day, anything with Haunted Canyon #203, had to be the choice. Good pick Joey. Temps ranged from 40 at the start, to never reaching 75. Just perfect :y:

    The route was Miles TH CCW to West Pinto #212 :next: Bull Basin #270 :next: Haunted Canyon #203 :next: Toney/Tony Cabin :next: Kennedy Spring Canyon :next: Haunted Canyon #203 :next: Paradise #271.

    Bull Basin #270 trail is fine, except for 1 mile either side of the climb. Dave complained that the blood from my shredded arms, was transferring from the sharp folliage, to :lol: his white shirt. Boo Hoo.

    Some of my favorite areas in the Supes, start at the Haunted Canyon/Bull Basin intersection, into Toney/Tony Ranch.

    At the ranch, we ran into a few members from SALT ... html, doing some site evaluations on their 76 acre parcel. ... html

    We spent some time looking for eyes, then I made my way back to the ranch to grab some lunch. I ran into another group of SALT members and volunteers on my way, including Jack Carlson. We had a short conversation of our exploits and some of his, and of course he asked me if I knew Wally :lol: .

    On our way out, we hit up Haunted Canyon #203 north, to the Paradise #271. On the north side of the pass on Paradise, I'd classify this as a "tight" trail for the upper 150 yards. The lower 2/3rds of this trail are paradise with it's mixed conifers and Sycamores. What a treat.

    There were no sightings this year [ photo ] .

    Thanks for driving JJ
    Paradise Trail # 271
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    Bull Basin 270 - Kennedy Spring - Paradise 271
    Haunted Canyon on Halloween felt appropriate. Temps in the upper 30s for our start didn't sting as we kept a nice clip heading up. Bull Basin 270 is a constant bush push up to the saddle with Government. From the saddle down to Haunted Canyon 203 seemed a notch better, most would still despise.

    Headed out past Kennedy Spring up the ravine then poked around the limestone bands. Heading back was the highlight. Stumbled upon the legend Jack Carlson. Halloween, Superstitions, Carlson, perfect temps, great company, fun little hike... was I in heaven?

    Nice little chat with Wayne at the cabin then off to our final leg of the loop. I chose this area for Paradise Trail #271 since Bruce and I haven't hiked it. Slightly reluctant as triplogs often mentioned bushwhacking to a dud rating for no running water in the creek.

    Maybe it was timing, I enjoyed 271. Perhaps a touch brushy. Nothing dense like the current state of 270. Late afternoon with shade advantage on a nice autumn day descending must be the ticket. The often thick and towering Arizona Cypress are on key with paradise in my book. A running creek would certainly be exceptional.

    Subtle perfection. A little early for the rust in sycamores. Arizona Walnut is the show. Ash is nice in areas.
    Paradise Trail # 271
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    Miles Ranch
    Our 17th annual spring break trip for the 2-3 of us (Max and I haven’t done all 17 but Jim has). Good times.
    This year we chose Miles Ranch and must give some HAZ appreciation to Lee for sure on this one: thanks for all the suggestions and useful info.

    After 30 years of AZ hiking I finally make it to one of FOTG’s favorites :lol: I’m not sure why I hadn’t been here but I think perhaps the massive open pit mines had something to do with it.

    Day 1
    West Pinto out to Spencer and up to Cement Spring. On the way back we took Cuff Button up to a bit beyond Jerky Spring which was down the side slope.
    We got about 3 hours rain in late afternoon but it eased up by 6pm.

    Day 2
    Paradise to Government Hill ridge and over to Bull Basin. We saw a total of 8 deer (one large buck) on the ridge part of this trip. The descent to Bull Basin we got in some heavy brush that was gnarly :sweat: On our return to Miles we saw 2 Toyotas with HAZ decals :)

    Day 3
    Out and back from Haunted Canyon upper TH. Saw one hiker, the only person we saw all weekend.

    Stopped at AZW on the way back :)

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    FR / Jeep Road - Car possible when dry

    To hike
    From Gold Canyon, AZ, take Hwy 60E 37 miles, just after crossing Pinto Creek (mine tailings in view on left) take left onto Pinto Valley Rd (also entrance to BHP Copper Industries). This becomes FR287; follow Brown/White Public Access Road signs. At 2.8 miles left at black/white public access sign just before company entrance. At 1.2 miles right on FR 287 at sign for Haunted Canyon. Roads are deteriorating; cars may be ok but high clearance four wheel would be better. At 2.6 miles right at fork away from "Peak Well 26 - 29" After cross creek bridge, .1 mile take left on FR287A. On this single lane road ascend for 3.8 miles to trailhead trail 203 to stash mountain bikes. Then on 1.8 miles to trail 271 trailhead.
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