NOBO hike late april

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NathanB
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NOBO hike late april

Post by NathanB » Mar 02 2018 12:12 pm

Hello there ! I'm a canadian hiker interested in hiking the AZT after I complete my year at uni. I don't really know the conditions and I'm wondering if late-april early-may would be too late to start a hike NOBO from the mexican border. Thanks a lot :)

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sandyfortner
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by sandyfortner » Mar 05 2018 7:04 pm

That time of year the desert will be getting pretty toasty. It could be doable IF you plan to carry large amounts of water, salty foods, hike early and late - taking the day to conserve energy at lower elevations. It'll be a great time to be up in the sky islands and from the Rim country north, but the desert sections will be a challenge.
:M2C: Goldilocks

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gringodevil
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by gringodevil » Mar 20 2018 10:09 pm

@sandyfortner
Hi Sandy,
I've got about 2 weeks and will be starting about April 1. I know that is later than most for leaving from the border, and I am worried about heat even on April 1, so I am considering starting a little further north. If you had 2 weeks to hike the most scenic section of AZT south of GC--what sections would that be? Where do 'sky islands' start?

Thanks!

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sandyfortner
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by sandyfortner » Mar 21 2018 5:45 am

@gringodevil
Greetings! Hey, any amount of time on the AZT is a good time! The desert will definitely be warming up in April. This year especially has been weather crazy! The sky islands are considered to be the southern part of the state when you're going from desert floor to elevation, such as Mt Wrightson, Rincons, Mt Lemmon. If you want to spend a couple weeks on the AZT, I highly recommend passages 18 through 24. But, it's also some of the toughest / most remote so depending on your conditioning, you may get through all or part of those passages. Another to consider which is not as tough or remote would be Blue Ridge to Cedar Ridge. There you would be all above the Rim with cooler temps (COLD) nights but generally great day temps. This would be in tall pines mostly where as the Superstitions through the Maztazals will have a wide variety of flora - from cactus to manzanita to pine. Look those areas over, see what kind of miles you could cover in your time frame. Both have a lot to offer!
:M2C: Goldilocks

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rcorfman
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by rcorfman » Mar 21 2018 1:15 pm

@gringodevil
I'll second Sandy's suggestion of hiking the Superstitions and Mazatzals. Basically, go from Picket Post to Pine. Enjoy your hike.
Go find a LonelyCache

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gringodevil
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by gringodevil » Mar 22 2018 8:54 pm

Hi Sandy & Rcorf,
Thanks so much for your input--very helpful. The flora option looks like a winner. I'm excited to leave 3 ft of snow and hit the trail soon.

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desertadapted
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by desertadapted » Mar 28 2018 6:51 am

@gringodevil
I third the recommendation. Also recommend using the Guthook application on your cell -- it's a pay app, but well worth it. Be mindful that the water situation is a bit gnarly in the Four Peaks Wilderness. Both Guthook and the AZ Trail website have solid information about water sources.

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gringodevil
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by gringodevil » Mar 30 2018 8:22 am

@desertadapted

Hi DA,
thanks for your input. I plan on buying Guthook today. I wasn't sure how the water reports are updated on it after you have downloaded it and when you are on the trail???--I'm imagining that would require a cell signal. Any idea what cell coverage would be from Maztazal-Pine?

as luck would have it, I was planning on starting somewhere in the gnarly water desert known as 4 peaks wilderness--logistically that seemed to make the most sense, but I may have to rethink that.

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desertadapted
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by desertadapted » Mar 30 2018 1:39 pm

@gringodevil
All comments based on Verizon service. From SOBO perspective.
About 5 miles south of pine you walk along some power lines. Cell Reception (CR) there.
Once you've gained about 1500 feet coming up off the Verde, you will have CR as you hike the cut up to the ridge (you can tell because you're still able to face back to Payson).
There is reception at the Barnhardt/MDT trail junction.
I did not have reception again until I was about 5 miles out from Snowflake, where I was in open view of Mt. Ord, which blasts about amazing CR to the surrounding area. Basically, you should have reception every day to 1.5 days depending on your speed.
In Passage 25, strongly consider a stay at Polk Spring - it's an Eden with beautiful water.

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joebartels
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by joebartels » Mar 30 2018 2:04 pm

desertadapted wrote:about 5 miles out from Snowflake, where I was in open view of Mt. Ord
Snowflake the town 86 miles NE of Mount Ord?
- joe

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desertadapted
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by desertadapted » Mar 30 2018 2:16 pm

@joebartels
Shoot, Sunflower.

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FireFly
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Re: NOBO hike late april

Post by FireFly » Mar 31 2018 1:17 am

gringodevil wrote:
Mar 30 2018 8:22 am
@desertadapted

I plan on buying Guthook today. I wasn't sure how the water reports are updated on it after you have downloaded it and when you are on the trail???--
Last year when I hiked the AZT I used Guthook AZT app on a phone without a SIM. I just used the wifi to update the water reports and comments of the app about once per week when I resupplied in town (usually using the free wifi in public library). So I didn't always have the very latest information but it was enough to make an educated guess if I would be able to rely on a watersource or not.

If there is a connection, comments get updated when you switch to the app. If I wasn't sure if I had the latest comments/ reports, I would close the app (using the back button) and restart (while having a connection). This may not always be necessary but I know this forces an update of the comments.

Not sure how updates works with a mobile phone carrier (I never had one) but I guess it works the same.
Last edited by FireFly on Mar 31 2018 1:23 am, edited 3 times in total.

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