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mini location map2010-12-18
7 by photographer avatarDarthStiller
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Boulder Creek TrailPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 18 2010
DarthStiller
Hiking12.20 Miles 1,757 AEG
Hiking12.20 Miles   6 Hrs   30 Mns   1.88 mph
1,757 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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HAZ - Event
mt98dew
I met up with Brian early at 5:30am on the way to the TH. He showed up with tennis shoes, jean shorts, no lunch, a grocery bag with 3 1-liter bottles of water and a zip-up hoodie. this was his 2nd hike in the Tonto NF, so he's still a newbie for hikes outside metro Phx.

Brian and I arrived at the TH at about 6am, a full hour before sunrise. We took our time getting ready, and then when the rain started, we decided to sit in the car for a few more minutes to wait for some daylight. we finally started at about 6:40am, making our way down FR22. I downloaded topohiker's GPS track and noticed that it went way to the west before switching back. Once we spotted the sign on FR22 telling us to veer right, I decided that since it was still pretty dark with the clouds, the best bet at this point was to bushwhack our way up the hill to the trail that I knew was just up there since from having topohiker's GPS track (thank God for GPS and HAZ). Even with Brian's under-equipped status and holding all his water in one hand, he was amazingly able to make his way across the stream, up and over a downed tree holding onto the branches with one hand, and thru the brush to a semi-clearing in the dark with no headlamp. Impressive. Most impressive.

We finally got to the trail and by that time the daylight was just enough to not need my headlamp. But the rain was still steady, but thankfully not very heavy. We (meaning me, the guy with the GPS), lost the trail at one point and took some kind of spur trail that dead ended, but after that things were pretty good.

The rain thankfully ended after less than an hour. The trail is in great shape until you reach the gate, and then it gets full of cairns and cow patties. We lost it again at a few spots in this section, but never had too much trouble. we got up just past the crossing of Boulder Creek and made it up a little further and then took a full half hour lunch. By the time we got started hiking again, I had enough of a chill to need my hoodie for a few minutes until I warmed up again.

The scenery was a little blase due to the weather, but it was also really nice from time to time seeing the low hanging clouds obscure the mountain tops. Some sun broke thru occaisionally, but not too much and not direct sunshine on us.

I was surprised to see that my track says we only did just over 12 miles RT. It felt more like 13 or more and I think were just about 4 miles from FR422 before we turned back. If I didn't have my day planned out to get some more chores done later on, I certainly could have done this whole section of trail in one day up and back. Oh well. Looking forward to tackling the upper end of this in the month or so and combining that with the upper end of the Sycamore Trail on the east side of FR422.
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DarthStiller's
435 Photosets

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