#15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

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garyc57
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#15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by garyc57 » Nov 18 2015 9:09 pm

The Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving, my son and I are hiking Segment # 15, the Tortilla Mountains. A kind friend has offered to drive us out this Saturday morning (the 20th) in his 4x4 pickup to cache some water about 12 miles in. The plan is to drive out the Florence - Kelvin Highway, turn onto the Kelvin Highway, then onto the "N Tecolote Rd", and follow it, until we're close to the Trail.

Question # 1 - What's the condition of this "N Tecolote Rd"? Has anyone driven it recently? Is it a decent dirt road, or is it just a "jeep track"? Using Google Maps, it looks "OK", but I'd prefer a on-the-ground report!

Question # 2 - Since I'm headed that way already, would anyone like me to cache some water for them? I live in Mesa - Stapley & Southern are the nearest crossroads. I'd need the water by Friday evening. IM me if you're interested. When it's cached, I'll send you the Lat/Long, and a picture or three to help you find it.

Gary

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rcorfman
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by rcorfman » Nov 18 2015 10:05 pm

I really liked that segment. I hiked both 14 and 15 on the same trip, taking two days for each. I carried all my water from the Freeman Rd trailhead for that passage so have no information on the road conditions. Enjoy your trip!
Go find a LonelyCache

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Sredfield
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by Sredfield » Nov 19 2015 6:43 am

There is a two track heading south southeast off the Florence Kelvin Highway that runs kind of along the rim of Ripsey Wash. I've driven out there to the AZT several times, it's a slow go but we made it in high clearance. It intersects the AZT south of a metal gate. Posted a public route called "So Ripsey Access" and the track is the red line.

The Freeman Rd cache was way full of water a month ago when we painted the kiosk there. We will be installing a shade ramada there on Dec 1.

I don't know about the Tecalote Rd.
Shawn
The bear went over the mountain to see what he could see.

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garyc57
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by garyc57 » Nov 22 2015 6:15 am

Follow-up...

My friend and I decided to use Srefield's "So Ripsey Access" route, because...

1) It was shorter than the "N Tecolote Rd" route, and...
2) It intersected the Trail at 15.25 miles, whereas the Tecolote Rd intersects at around 13.1. I wanted to be further in before we hit the cache.

Sredfield is right - the road is definitely "slow go". Lots of deep ruts across the road made for an interesting ride. High clearance is a must, and 4x4 is almost mandatory. Lots of brush alongside the road - so plan on some pin striping, unless your vehicle is narrower than most.

Thanks for everyone's help,
Gary

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garyc57
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by garyc57 » Dec 05 2015 8:36 am

All,

Well, the hike is over and I survived (thanks to my son and wife!).

However, we missed the water cache. :oops: So, almost 4 gallons are still waiting to be used. One gallon has been opened, and partially used. Another gallon - somehow - got a pin hole in it near the bottom. It's the one sitting upside down. Please use it first. The other two gallons are still sealed.

Here's the Lat/Long where the cache is: 33.008251, -111.003234

When I eventually get around to posting the triplog and photoset, the first picture will be where I cached the water.

Thanks for all your help,
Gary

P.S. If you find a pair of prescription glasses - they're mine! ](*,)

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DallinW
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by DallinW » Dec 05 2015 8:55 am

garyc57 wrote:All,

Here's the Lat/Long where the cache is: 33.008251, -111.003234

P.S. If you find a pair of prescription glasses - they're mine! ](*,)
Me and my cousin will keep an eye out for your glasses, and also for that water cache. Were any guidebook water sources running at all in segment 15?
Last edited by DallinW on Dec 05 2015 10:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

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big_load
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by big_load » Dec 05 2015 12:15 pm

garyc57 wrote:P.S. If you find a pair of prescription glasses - they're mine! ](*,)
Oh no! I go back and forth over which glasses and sunglasses to bring on a hike. I worry more about scratching them on trees and rocks than leaving them on the trail, but I do worry quite a bit about leaving sunglasses in a hotel or rental car. I have to stick to my procedures.

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Trew
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by Trew » Dec 05 2015 12:25 pm

No natural water in this area? I hope to be through this section in early April on the way to Picketpost from the border.

Very interesting information.

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garyc57
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by garyc57 » Dec 06 2015 5:48 am

DallinW wrote:Were any guidebook water sources running at all in segment 15?
I was so focused on putting one foot in front of the other, and knowing that our water cache was waiting for us - that we didn't look for any of the guidebook's water sources. If a water source didn't cross the trail, I didn't look for it. I didn't see any water on the trail - a few damp spots, maybe, but no standing water. Sorry.

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garyc57
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by garyc57 » Dec 06 2015 5:54 am

big_load wrote:Oh no! I go back and forth over which glasses and sunglasses to bring on a hike.
When I hike, I bring a cheap pair of Wal-Mart readers for reading the fine print on the GPS. As for sunglasses - I never wear 'em. I worry that the tinting will reduce my ability to spot rattlesnakes! :scared:

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CannondaleKid
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by CannondaleKid » Dec 06 2015 7:40 am

garyc57 wrote:As for sunglasses - I never wear 'em. I worry that the tinting will reduce my ability to spot rattlesnakes!
I never wear sunglasses while hiking either... but no rattlesnake worries, just eye-strain.

Years ago, when I wore sunglasses while hiking on bright days I felt more eye-strain after a hike than when just wearing glasses. As an experiment I stopped wearing (prescription) sunglasses, wearing my clear prescription glasses instead and I found eye-strain was no longer an issue.

I could hike without glasses (far-sighted in one, near-sighted in the other, almost exact opposites) but as much as I hate wearing glasses, I ALWAYS wear them while hiking for safety...

Since most of my hikes involve bushwhacking, getting poked in the eye with a sharp stick is an ever-present hazard, one which has happened too many times to count.

The worst being one I'm sure I would have lost my left eye if not for my glasses... it was a pretty solid branch sticking out of a tree straight at me so it blended in with the trunk and I walked directly into it. The end of the branch hit solid on the left lens then slid onto my nose, slicing a 3/4" gash in my nose, the end result being a scar on my nose which I'll carry to my dying day.
CannondaleKid

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hikerdw
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by hikerdw » Dec 06 2015 3:54 pm

@DallinWI was out there yesterday and there is water about a half mile off the trail at an unnamed ranch setup in Ripsey Wash south of where the trail crosses the wash. The water trough was full. I will post my trip log tomorrow.

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garyc57
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by garyc57 » Sep 27 2016 5:30 pm

@garyc57
All,

Now that it's starting to cool off, I'm planning on going out and retrieving what's left of my water jugs - full or not.

Another poster* - whose opinion I value very much - considered the cache to be "litter". So, the plan is to hike out on Columbus Day - October 10th - and retrieve what's left.

Please - if you know of anyone depending on that cache - let them know it will be gone on October 10th.

Thanks,
Gary

* I won't name names, but - he usually hikes with a couple of white dogs :)

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garyc57
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Re: #15 Tortilla Mountains Water Cache

Post by garyc57 » Nov 25 2016 6:43 am

To close off this post...

As most of you know, October here in Arizona was WAY too hot, so I postponed the retrieval until Veteran's Day. My wife (Trail Angel Extraordinaire) and I drove in about a half mile, and walked in from there. It was exactly a four mile round trip!

:y: I found the glasses I lost a year ago! They were about 20 ft. from where I placed the cache. The lenses had fallen out of the frames, and the ear pieces looked like they's been chewed on by rodents. Not real "salvage-able".

The plastic jugs were no longer there. What was left were thousands of tiny plastic fragments. We picked up what we could - I think I found three lids/necks. So maybe someone took one of the jugs.

So - the moral of the story is: 11 months in the Arizona sun is too long for plastic jugs. Retrieve them much sooner.

All in all, and nice morning hike with my sweetheart!

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