Cairn-building AZT Passage 25

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Type Trail Maintenance
 
Start Date 2016-04-15
 
# of days 3

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Sredfield
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Cairn-building AZT Passage 25

Post by Sredfield » Jan 01 2016 1:50 pm

AZT Work Event
CHANGE 1 April 15-17, 2016
Passage 25, White Rock Mesa

One of the most common comments (complaints) from AZT hikers is the difficulty navigating portions of Passage 25, north of the East Verde River. This portion of the AZT gets lite use so it is not well worn. The area is an ancient volcanic plain, littered with uniformly colored dark red rocks. The cairns that mark the way are the same color as the surroundings making them difficult to see. In wet years the vegetation all but hides them.

Join us for an overnight trip to improve the navigation aids along the passage. One option to make the cairns more visible is to enlarge them-significantly. We'll hike south from Twin Buttes trailhead to White Rock Spring, enlarging existing cairns and possibly adding a few new ones along the way. Cairns will have to be ~4 feet tall to stand out above the grass, so it will take some time. We'll overnight at the spring, and replace the ancient post and sign there that has succumbed to the elements. If we have sufficient help some crew members may continue the cairn work south of White Rock Spring while others handle the sign work.

Each member of the group should equip themselves to be self-sufficient and fully prepared to hike 7-9 miles each day, carrying light trail tools and completing the cairn building work along the way.

Participants are welcome to camp Friday night (April 8 ) at Twin Buttes TH to get a convenient start Saturday morning. Average temps at LF Ranch (south end of the passage) in April are a low of 42 and a high of 77. If weather is not cooperating, we'll go the following weekend.

Contact Shawn Redfield at traildirector@aztrail.org for more details and to sign up.
Last edited by Sredfield on Apr 08 2016 1:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Shawn
The bear went over the mountain to see what he could see.

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azbackpackr
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Re: Cairn-building, AZT Passage 25

Post by azbackpackr » Jan 01 2016 5:06 pm

Shawn, it appears I'll have a new job in Page, so I will just have to play it by ear. Definitely interested, though. If I can get away those days, I will.
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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Tough_Boots
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Re: Cairn-building, AZT Passage 25

Post by Tough_Boots » Jan 01 2016 5:38 pm

Twin Buttes is the only time I've ever hiked on old road and thought it needed cairns :lol:
"there is no love where there is no bramble."
--bill callahan

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Sredfield
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Re: Cairn-building AZT Passage 25

Post by Sredfield » Apr 08 2016 1:01 pm

I wimped out in face of some pretty iffy weather forecast and am moving this to next weekend. Tough to make that call but tearing up muddy roads to get to the trailhead, then working in rain and cold would not be fun. This is AZ, gorgeous weather is on the way.
Shawn
The bear went over the mountain to see what he could see.

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rcorfman
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Re: Cairn-building AZT Passage 25

Post by rcorfman » Apr 08 2016 1:23 pm

Ooh, I might be able to make next weekend. Isn't the hard to navigate portion on Polles Mesa, at least that's what I remember when I hiked it last year? I don't remember any navigational problems from Whiterock Spring up to Twin Buttes TH.
Go find a LonelyCache

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Sredfield
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Re: Cairn-building AZT Passage 25

Post by Sredfield » Apr 14 2016 8:26 am

We are going to give this another shot, the forecast is again not perfect, but it doesn’t look too wet –30% chance of showers Saturday, Sunny Sunday.

Understandably, the change in dates has thinned the ranks a bit but we will have ample horsepower to get this done.

It is definitely the thru-hiker season, we met one in Oracle State Park yesterday, and he said there were 5 of them in Oracle the night before.

The plan remains the same, we’ll plan to be self-sufficient, gather up at the TH between 7-8 AM Saturday morning, drive as far south as common sense allows, then get to it. If everyone I have heard from is at the TH, we'll head out. Late arrival--you know the plan. We’ll work on cairns on our way to camp near White Rock Spring, install the new sign there, and work as far south as time and energy permit.

I’m thinking the cairn building will take some time. To get them big enough to see from a distance and above the vegetation, 4 feet tall is not unreasonable. I recently hiked passage 16 where Laddie Cox and crew built HUGE cairns years ago—they do say “Arizona Trail” pretty clearly. Four feet tall means ~four feet wide at the base, fortunately there is no shortage of raw material. I’m sure we’ll figure it out.

We’ve installed signs before; the main thing is not to forget any critical part or tool.

We'll have a couple saws and loppers for any incidental trail work.
Shawn
The bear went over the mountain to see what he could see.

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tibber
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Re: Cairn-building AZT Passage 25

Post by tibber » Apr 14 2016 8:35 am

fortunately there is no shortage of raw material.
that's for sure.

Good luck out there.
For me, sometimes it's just as much about the journey as the destination.
Oh, and once in awhile, don't forget to look back at the trail you've traveled.

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rcorfman
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Re: Cairn-building AZT Passage 25

Post by rcorfman » Apr 14 2016 11:31 am

@Sredfield
I was hoping to be able to go but, unfortunately I wont be able to make it.
Go find a LonelyCache

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