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Ranger Trail - South Mountain
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mini location map2011-02-20
16 by photographer avatarDarthStiller
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Ranger Trail - South MountainPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 20 2011
DarthStiller
Hiking11.70 Miles 2,800 AEG
Hiking11.70 Miles   5 Hrs   30 Mns   2.13 mph
2,800 ft AEG
 
1st trip
I got started at 6:45am after waiting for Brian for a little, thinking he changed his mind. Turns out he was just a little late and caught up with me not long after I started hiking.

We took the Mine Drop Trail up first, getting the most brutal climb out of the way early. From there we took the National Trail east to the Ranger Trail and descended towards San Juan Rd until we got to the Las Lomitas Loop and took that east to the Kiwanis Trail. At that junction I was getting hungry a little earlier than usual, so I took my lunch at the picnic ramadas there before we ascended the Kiwanis Trail. The Kiwanis Trail is really a nice trail with some nice views inside that canyon and of the rock wall dams. I missed the petroglyphs that are there somewhere.

Along the National Trail we got hit by the rain, wind and clouds. I thought Brian might be put off by some of this, but he responded by declaring that this was the most awesome hike he had ever done. The low hanging clouds made for some nice views and the wind made it interesting. At one point, we could see some clouds whizzing over a saddle from the canyon below, giving us an intuitive explanation of why it's always so windy at saddles.

As we descended the Gila View Trail, the wind picked up every time the switchbacks turned N to the edge of the canyon. At the bottom we took the big spur trail towards 5th Ave. and then turned back to the TH. Nice overall hike made more interesting by the weather.
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