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Palmer Mine Loop, AZ

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Guide 28 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Phoenix > Superstitions NW
2.5 of 5 by 14
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Difficulty 1.5 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance Multi-Loop 3.15 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,861 feet
Elevation Gain 630 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 6.3
Backpack Yes & Connecting
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Collective Slideshow
20  2018-10-20
Fins Hands Dutchman Loop
7  2018-10-04
Lost Dutchman State Park Loop
11  2017-04-16 DarthStiller
2  2016-09-03
Flatiron Hike - Superstitions
2  2016-06-14 gummo
27  2016-03-25
Lookin' for gold - Western Supes
5  2015-11-28
The Gatekeeper
45  2015-10-11
Palmer Mine Big Loop
Page 1,  2,  3
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Feb, Jan, Dec, Mar → 9 AM
Seasons   Autumn to Spring
Sun  7:30am - 5:42pm
Route Scout App
Official Route
4 Alternative
Nearby Area Water
Flatiron Hike - Superstitions
Flatiron Hike - Superstitions
same trailhead
5.9 mi
2,900 ft
Superstition Peak 5024 - Siphon Draw
Superstition Peak 5024 - Siphon Draw
same trailhead
5.8 mi
2,942 ft
Superstition Peak 5057 from Lost Dutchman
Superstition Peak 5057 from Lost Dutchman
same trailhead
15.3 mi
6,157 ft
Superstition Ridgeline
Superstition Ridgeline
same trailhead
11.5 mi
4,480 ft
Siphon Draw Trail #53
Siphon Draw Trail #53
0.0 mi away
3.9 mi
1,070 ft
Superstition Peak 4648
Superstition Peak 4648
0.0 mi away
6.2 mi
3,057 ft
Peak 3845 - Superstition Mountains
Peak 3845 - Superstition Mountains
0.0 mi away
2.8 mi
2,013 ft
Peak 4102 - Superstitions
Peak 4102 - Superstitions
0.0 mi away
7.0 mi
2,500 ft
Lost Dutchman State Park Campground
Lost Dutchman State Park Campground
0.1 mi away
Lost Dutchman State Park Loop
Lost Dutchman State Park Loop
0.1 mi away
2.9 mi
555 ft
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Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
There's Gold in Them Hills
by AZLOT69

Likely In-Season!
Dating back to 1886, the Palmer mine was originally known as the Boulder-Buckhorn Mine, high on the slopes of the western face of the Superstition Mountains. William Kimball was the original owner and he sunk a shaft 75 feet deep uncovering Gold and Copper. William Kimball died in 1906 from pneumonia. The mine sat inactive until 1917. Dr. Ralph Palmer was an investor with a group from Mesa and they extended the shaft to a depth of 215 feet but World War 1 eventually caused the mine to become inactive again. The mine had a note against it and was eventually sold at auction in 1926. Dr Palmer became the sole proprietor. A drift was extended another 35 feet and Palmer was sure he was close to a rich vein of Gold. After substantial investment mining operations came to an abrupt end in 1947 after an accident claimed the life of an employee some 225 feet below ground. The Mine was abandoned in 1949. Dr. Palmer was an Arizona pioneer and his love for mining and the Superstition Mountains intrigued him until his death in 1954.

With a little history in hand, here's a nice loop hike which gets you up close to the Superstitions, at a height offering spectacular views of the valley, can be accomplished in a morning or afternoon, and is within most peoples abilities.

I started this loop from the Siphon Draw Trailhead in the Lost Dutchman State Park. Take the Discovery Trail and follow directions to the Siphon Draw Trail. As you proceed on the steady climb towards the mountain you will pass a fence and gate leaving the State Park and entering the Tonto National Forest. Proceeding to the East you next encounter a trail heading off to the Northeast, this is the Prospectors View Trail but continue Straight ahead. Next you arrive at a trail crossing marked as Jacobs Crosscut.

(If you wanted to avoid the Sate Park Fee this would be an alternate way to approach this loop but it adds significantly to the distance. You could park at the Broadway Trailhead and hike north on Jacobs Crosscut, this adds 4.5 miles one way, or you could park off First Water and hike over on Jacobs Crosscut adding about 2 miles one way.)

Continue towards the mountains on the Siphon Draw Trail and soon you will see what's left of a small structure on your left with a concrete cellar... continue on about 200 feet and you will see a trail curving off to the left. This is your turn. Soon you can see that this was an old jeep/service road. In about a hundred yards you will see a house size boulder on your left, painted - KEEP OUT - on it just begging for you to continue. Now you will begin to notice Mine Tailings. These Mine Tailings continue on for about a city block. Take your time thru this area and explore the hillsides. Look up at the hoodoos. Notice bits of Copper Ore all around you.( blue green color). Try to imagine where the shaft was located. You will find various pieces of metal and pipe still in the dump area. As you continue to the north on this trail you will come to another digging a few feet off the trail to the east in which you can see a few copper veins in the rock. The trail continues to the north and passes thru a couple steep washes. Suddenly you arrive at a trail. This is the Prospectors View Trail. You have options here but my loop continues by taking a left at this unmarked intersection and following it down to a marked intersection with Jacobs Crosscut. Here I turned right and Continue to the north now on Jacobs Crosscut. Proceed about 1/3 mile thru a couple of passes enjoying your view of Four Peaks. There is a small trail marked by a Cairn which heads off to the Northwest at this point. Take this trail and it arrives back to the Saguaro parking lot where there are restroom facilities. Then continue Northwest on the trail - mile to your start- The Siphon Draw Trailhead.

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.

  • guide related image
    guide related
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 $$
AZ State Parks more info
2018 Day Use Fees range from $2–$30

Map Drive
Paved - Car Okay

To Siphon Draw Trailhead
From Mesa follow Highway 60 East to Idaho Road. Turn North onto Idaho Road which is SR88 and follow North 2.2 miles. SR88 bends right just past Scenic St. and Idaho continues North. Be sure to go right and stay on SR88. Follow SR88 4.9 miles to the Lost Dutchman State Park. Turn right into the park. Pay the fee then follow the signs to the trailhead.

Free Alternative:
Utilize the Crosscut Trailhead 0.7 mi in on FR78. It is 2 miles on Jacobs Trail #58 to the junction with Siphon Draw #53. Which is 0.85 mi into #53.
2.00 - 0.85 = 1.15 mi extra each way

Mining Camp
This former free access point is now private as of Dec 2016.
2017 - cancel christmas, closed

From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 41.3 mi - about 52 mins
From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 134 mi - about 2 hours 9 mins
From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 186 mi - about 2 hours 56 mins
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