Gila Wilderness Backpacking in Spring

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nonot
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Gila Wilderness Backpacking in Spring

Post by nonot » Dec 31 2018 10:56 am

Does anyone here have any suggestions for backpacking this wilderness?

I've done a middle fork-west fork loop previously, but am looking for ideas in the 3-10 day range in the Gila Wilderness on new trails.
I prefer loop trips, but if there is some small amount of trail used twice that's fine too.

Right now I'm looking at options starting from Snow Lake, Turkey Creek TH or the Mogollon Creek TH, but am not sure that with the fire damage whether I can successfully make loops out of them.
http://hikearizona.com/garmin_maps.php

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RedRoxx44
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Re: Gila Wilderness Backpacking in Spring

Post by RedRoxx44 » Dec 31 2018 12:07 pm

Years ago did a Turkey Creek, Granny Mtn, Gila River loop that was pretty nice. Trail was a bit vague on Granny mtn, Side trip up or down Turkey with a day pack is recommended ( above the hot springs, but that area is nice too). According to guide book about 46 miles recommended 6-8 days but I think did it in 3 or 4 days??

The lower TH areas were spared the fire damage I think, but the closer to the high country you will see it, although I think the newer fires did not make it into Snow Park, just above it.

Rain Creek was mighty fine when I was there a few years ago, but supposedly that TH is decommissioned? Although I cannot see why and you could use it with Mogollon Creek I would think.

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Re: Gila Wilderness Backpacking in Spring

Post by hikeaz » Jan 11 2019 5:27 pm

At the risk of being impertinent, I immensely enjoyed my loops up in the Leopold and San Pedro Parks. If you've not been it might offer some 'new meat'.
Last edited by hikeaz on Jan 11 2019 5:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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nonot
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Re: Gila Wilderness Backpacking in Spring

Post by nonot » Jan 12 2019 10:34 pm

RedRoxx44 wrote:Years ago did a Turkey Creek, Granny Mtn, Gila River loop that was pretty nice. Trail was a bit vague on Granny mtn, Side trip up or down Turkey with a day pack is recommended ( above the hot springs, but that area is nice too). According to guide book about 46 miles recommended 6-8 days but I think did it in 3 or 4 days??

The lower TH areas were spared the fire damage I think, but the closer to the high country you will see it, although I think the newer fires did not make it into Snow Park, just above it.

Rain Creek was mighty fine when I was there a few years ago, but supposedly that TH is decommissioned? Although I cannot see why and you could use it with Mogollon Creek I would think.
Looking into these suggestions, these no longer seem possible as Gila River trail appears to be washed out/mostly gone and is not recommended. The rain creek TH is still open, and the rain creek trail was recently maintained. The west fork mogollon trail is listed as destroyed by the mudslides/flash flooding from after the fire, so I'm not sure I can connect from Rain Creek over to Mogollon creek. It seems you were really lucky to hike these areas while they were still maintained!

For others looking to plan their trip here are some good resources to use. Why they don't put the same info together on a single map I will never understand.

Trails Destroyed or Decommissioned:
https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DO ... 606330.pdf

Trails Maintained (As of Nov/2018)
https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DO ... 602505.pdf
http://hikearizona.com/garmin_maps.php

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Hike Arizona it is full of striking, biting, stabbing, venomous wildlife!

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Jim_H
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Re: Gila Wilderness Backpacking in Spring

Post by Jim_H » Jan 13 2019 9:14 am

I still ask that if you or anyone else pass through McKenna Park, Woodland Park, or some of the other ponderosa pine parks which have had several low intensity fires in the last 20 years, that you take some photos and post them. Tag me, too, if you can, since I may miss some sets. Spring isn't really the best season for lush growth, but it can be nice. I think summer is probably nicer, but your trip is your trip.
Nothing more enjoyable than a good hike out of town.

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