I've been dying for a second chance at my failed attempt to hike a rather long loop in the Superstition Wilderness in March. I had another thread going here viewtopic.php?f=18&t=7466
about a long loop I had planned in the supes that didn't work out for me. I am going to try again in early January, but with a modified route.
I am planning on 8 days. The route I have planned will start at first water trailhead, go to reavis falls and come back to lost dutchman state park via the superstition ridgeline trail. A picture will illustrate the route better
I plotted the route out in garmin basecamp to get the mileage calculations and elevation gain for each day.
Day 1 -
1st water trailhead to bluff spring
water - bluff spring
Day 2 -
Bluff spring to rogers spring
water - randolph canyon, rogers spring
Day 3 -
Rogers spring to reavis falls
water - plow saddle spring, reavis falls
Day 4 -
Reavis falls to clover spring
water - reavis falls, plow saddle spring, and maybe clover spring (have read there could be some pools)
Day 5 -
Clover spring to Charlebois
water - whiskey spring/upper labarge box, charlebois
Day 6 -
Relax day - explore peters canyon, etc
not counting any miles
water - charlebois
Day 7 -
Charlebois to robbers roost/west boulder canyon area
water - charlebois, peralta canyon
Day 8 -
Superstition ridgeline to lost dutchman state park
water - haul extra water from peralta canyon last night for today
Total miles - 83.8
Total elevation gain - 26,205ft
So, it's going to be about the same mileage as my last plan for the 6 day trip, but with 8 days. Really, it will only be 7 days, with one day "off" to explore from a basecamp. The extra day also give me wiggle room if for some reason I cannot stick to my itinerary. Days 2-4 are going to be the toughest, otherwise the mileage is 10 miles or less each day.
From the looks of it, January is in the wet season for the supes? I have been told water shouldn't be much of a problem at this time. Looks like the supes got a lot of rain last week. I was just wondering how long the water tends to stick around after heavy rains like that. Also, out of curiosity, what is a rough threshold of how much rain causes flash flooding in some of the creeks in the supes? I ask because when I was there in March, the water levels jumped considerably after what I though was a lot of rain, but ended up being .35 inches according to weather.com(checked when I got home from the hike). The rain that feel last week was over 2 inches, and I was wondering how the water levels where after those rains.
Can anyone comment on water at clover spring? Can I expect to find some pools there?
On night 7, I was planning on camping near the junction of west boulder canyon trail and robber roost trail, so I can be close to the start of the superstition ridgeline trail in the morning. Does anyone know if there are any places to camp in that area? Also, I am not expecting there to be any water in that area(please tell me if I am wrong), so my plan is to hike down into peralta canyon (have read there should be pools here) and load up on as much water as I can carry so I am set for the day tomorrow. I have some 2L platypus collapsible bags to use for this, and other waterless stretches that I anticipate.
What do you guys use for sleeping pads out in the supes? I used a Klymit inertia x-frame pad last time, and it popped the first night (and first time using in the field) due to some thorns sticking up through the bottom of my tent. I am not to keen on bringing another inflatable pad here, and I was thinking about buying a foam pad. Your thoughts?
Footwear - Last time I wore merril moab ventilators, and I know I would have gotten some serious blisters if I did the whole hike. I only did 20+ miles and had a lot of rubbing on the sides of my feet. I wore these on a 45 mile hike before, but in a lot easier terrain, and had no blisters or issues then. Either way, I don't plan on hiking in them again here. I have a pair of zamberlan vioz gt boots (full grain leather) that I usually wear, but they're heavy. Didn't get any on a 55 mile hike in Colorado this summer. The problem is that these boots don't breathe well, so my feet sweat a lot and get really hot, and they hurt like hell at the end of a long day. They get sore from being cramped up in the boots, not necessarily from any blisters. I have been thinking about trying to hike in trail runners as I want to start hiking longer trails, but I don't know if they are appropriate for a hike here as there is just so many pokey/stabby plants. Also the weather, if it's rainy or even snowing, the trail runners probably aren't going to be a good choice. Then again, thru hikers wear trail runners in these conditions and apparently it isn't an issue for them. What do you guys think?
That's all the questions I can think of at the moment.