petrified forest this weekend

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pickelltree
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petrified forest this weekend

Post by pickelltree » Mar 29 2010 9:50 pm

i was brain storming for places i need to tick off before i leave AZ. i saw it was going to rain some on friday, will that make it hard to get around up there? also i was thinking about camping somewhere than doing day hikes each days, does anyone have any suggestions for this type of trip.

hopefully rallytoad sees this and can give me some suggestions.

pickelltree

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PaleoRob
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by PaleoRob » Mar 29 2010 10:14 pm

Chinle in the rain = lots of mud. There's good base camp locations both north and south but you have to backpack into them. Pretty much everything can be reached via a dayhike from the roads though. Backpacking only allows you to get an early start and late end to your exploring. Black Forest, Onyx Bridge, Mountain Lion Mesa, Pottery Hill, and Pithouse Mesa are all great destinations. There are more places too. rallytoad worked up there for a while so he's pretty up on things. I've spent some time out there as well - PM me for more info if you want. I might be interested in heading out there this weekend too - have to see about finances.
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rally_toad
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by rally_toad » Mar 29 2010 11:10 pm

UGH Im soo jealous, wish I had the time to head up there this weekend. Responded to your pm, Mounain lion mesa and Onyx bridge are definitely worth considering, I just love the hike out to Onyx. Another good one is bagging Pilot Rock (Im sure no one's been up there since August, plus you'll see cool stuff on the way). Another great one is the famous Model T thats out there in the Northern Wilderness.
But the great place about PeFo is I could go hiking every day and seeing something absolutely new and amazing every time. I've definitely fallen in love with that place.
Keep in mind the only camping allowed in the park is backcountry camping, if you do want to backpack get a permit as soon as you arrive, they have to stop writing them an hour before the park closes (closes at 6 this time of year).
And tell everyone Alex says hi.
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azbackpackr
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by azbackpackr » Jan 31 2013 12:48 pm

OK I'm dredging up this old thread so as to not make a new one. I am probably going to do the Feb. 3, 2013, ranger-led hike to see some petroglyphs. I called the park, and was told we will also see some paleontology sites. (Word is out that a certain paleontologist member of HAZ was at the park within the past week. That Page CG guy, you know the one I'm talking about? ;) )

Here's the info for Feb. Sunday hikes at the park:

February 2013
February 3, 2013 at noon Lacey Point Petroglyphs Meet at Painted Desert Visitor Center
February 10, 2013 at noon Onyx Bridge Meet at Painted Desert Visitor Center
February 17, 2013 at noon Jasper Forest Meet at Rainbow Forest Museum
February 24, 2013 at noon The Dying Grounds Meet at Painted Desert Visitor Center

Each hike will last about three hours and is about 3 mi (4.8 km) round trip. Each hike showcases impressive petroglyphs and colorful petrified wood rarely seen by the public. Be ready to learn in the great outdoor classroom of Petrified Forest! These hikes are not accessible and are over uneven terrain. Exposure to elements may include mud, ice, and cold weather. As such, wear appropriate layered clothing and footwear. Bring food and water. The hike is free, with no prior signup required. The normal entry fee into the park applies. Hike locations are subject to change based on conditions and weather.

Here's the link to the page:
http://www.nps.gov/pefo/planyourvisit/index.htm
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PaleoRob
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by PaleoRob » Jan 31 2013 1:19 pm

I'm trying to convince the wife to head up there, but I had to drop $400 on my truck this week to get some stuff fixed, so I think the answer is leaning towards "no."
"The only thing we did was wrong was staying in the wilderness to long...the only thing we did was right was the day we started to fight..."
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azbackpackr
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by azbackpackr » Jan 31 2013 1:53 pm

Rob del Desierto wrote:I'm trying to convince the wife to head up there, but I had to drop $400 on my truck this week to get some stuff fixed, so I think the answer is leaning towards "no."
Well, rats. I do plan on being at that hike, if you can make it up there.
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rally_toad
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by rally_toad » Feb 01 2013 8:50 am

I'm glad to see they are offering these great back country hikes. The thing about this park is that people just breeze through it on the road and never really have an understanding of how scientifically important it is to geologists and archaeologists. I don't think the park helps this by not having a campground or any longer hiking trails, so its good to see them emphasizing getting out and exploring. Wish I could make it to a bunch of these!
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azbackpackr
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by azbackpackr » Feb 01 2013 4:27 pm

I hadn't realized they don't have a campground. There are so few good tent campgrounds near any of the interstates--and that park is right on the interstate. The weather there is lousy anyway! Hot summers, windy cold springs, windy freezing winters. Even worse than where I live.

The person leading the hike is a volunteer, but I'll mention to him that hikers would like to see more trails. However, I think they want to keep a lid on what they have out there. It's such an archaeological treasure. People can go on about geology, but the main attraction for me is the archaeology there. I just acquired two Polly Schaafsma books, and am reading them simultaneously.
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rally_toad
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by rally_toad » Feb 01 2013 6:46 pm

Yeah based on the archaeological resources there it really qualifies for National Park status even if it had absolutely 0 petrified wood.
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autumnstars
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by autumnstars » Feb 01 2013 9:02 pm

Yes, although I don't recall where I camped the last time I visited Petrified Forest NP, it is not very convenient that you cannot camp inside the park except by backpacking...
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azbackpackr
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by azbackpackr » Feb 02 2013 12:44 pm

Homolovi State Park nearer to Winslow has a campground. I think it's still being operated. Of course there are probably some private RV campgrounds around that allow tenters. But again, may as well stay at a motel. RV campgrounds aren't cheap.
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azbackpackr
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by azbackpackr » Feb 03 2013 6:57 pm

I went on the hike today, and I may go back another Sunday for another one. It was fun!
For some reason I can't figure out how to add a link today. Long day, I guess.
Pictures later.
There seems to be a private campground by the south entrance, off 180. It said "free camping." There is a KOA in Holbrook, so that's closer than Homolovi State Park. $24.66 per night with tax for a tent site, according to their website. Pretty spendy, if you ask me.
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PaleoRob
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by PaleoRob » Feb 04 2013 6:10 pm

Plenty of state and federal lands nearby where you can conceivably car camp as well. Looking forward to the pics and report, Liz.
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azbackpackr
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by azbackpackr » Feb 04 2013 7:01 pm

Rob del Desierto wrote:Plenty of state and federal lands nearby where you can conceivably car camp as well. Looking forward to the pics and report, Liz.
Today I saw more stuff and met some rangers, but haven't had time for any more hikes. Walked around the Crystal Forest loop.
Last edited by azbackpackr on Feb 04 2013 9:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
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mikehikes
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by mikehikes » Feb 04 2013 8:56 pm

Ya trying to get that job shot out from under me?

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rally_toad
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by rally_toad » Feb 05 2013 10:25 am

Also regarding camping I must say that backpacking in Petrified Forest is a truly remarkable experience. You have to carry a bunch of water and there's no where to hang a hammock, but its just awesome. To tell the truth you don't have to walk that far to camp for free in the park.
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PaleoRob
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by PaleoRob » Feb 05 2013 1:10 pm

rally_toad speaks truth. My first-ever backpack was in PeFo and I still love going back.
"The only thing we did was wrong was staying in the wilderness to long...the only thing we did was right was the day we started to fight..."
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azbackpackr
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by azbackpackr » Feb 05 2013 4:36 pm

On the other hand, I'm interested in climbing Pilot Rock. That would be quite a trudge over to the base of it, unless there is a road outside of the park where you can get to it more easily? My Arizona atlas shows only what looks like a very long dirt road on the Navajo Reservation side.

Oh, and I see Rally Toad, you have done the hike! http://hikearizona.com/x.php?I=4&ZTN=2238&UID=0
Holy cow! :worthy:
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by rally_toad » Feb 06 2013 5:35 pm

Yeah there is a road to the base of it on the western side of the park. I've never been out on that road, so I have no knowledge of the conditions. I hiked it from the Painted Desert Inn Trailhead. It is quite a trek to the base and you have to go straight north and then when you are due east of Pilot Rock then you can turn and start heading towards it. The cliffs just to the south and southeast of Pilot Rock are not navigable. There's also an old Model T out that way at the base of Chinde Mesa if you want another cool adventure.
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azbackpackr
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Re: petrified forest this weekend

Post by azbackpackr » Feb 07 2013 11:07 am

Well, now it's on my wish list.
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.

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