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Carr-Ramsey Short Loop, AZ
mini location map2012-08-26
88 by photographer avatarrwstorm
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Carr-Ramsey Short Loop, AZ 
Carr-Ramsey Short Loop, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 26 2012
Hiking8.80 Miles 2,600 AEG
Hiking8.80 Miles   8 Hrs   30 Mns   1.04 mph
2,600 ft AEG
 no routes
Sensory. Overload. This is my nearly annual (for the past 23 years) August hike up to at least Carr Peak, sometimes more, to immerse myself in the joy of full blown monsoon wildflower madness! This year I decided to extend the hike, reprising my June 1990 route on which I ended up with the worst case of hypothermia I ever had the displeasure of experiencing. That definitely was on my mind today as the thunderstorms roamed around.

Started the day by stopping at the McDonalds on SR92 near Buffalo Soldiers Trail to fuel up on a sausage biscuit, hash brown, and small coffee off the cheap menu. Then up the mountain to start the hike at Ramsey Vista CG. I usually do this loop in a clockwise direction, but today I wanted to avoid the exposure on the recently burned Carr Peak portion, and head into the more shaded Comfort Spring/Ramsey Canyon first. With my rather late 1045 start time, it was already warm, so I figured I would have some cloud cover and cooler temperatures when I was doing the serious uphill sections. This worked out just fine. I also wanted to see if the hike seemed any easier in this direction. It did not. The pull up from the 6700 foot level at Hamburg to Bear Saddle via Wisconsin Canyon is pretty brutal. Even after that the section from Bear Saddle to the junction with the Carr Peak Trail has its moments. The section from there to the Carr Peak connector trail is very mellow by comparison (and today made more interesting by a BP helicopter flying around the canyons and peaks and buzzing me..I waved). I did enjoy knowing that my last 3.5 miles back to the car would be all downhill. :)

One thing I did this trip was to take a short side trip up to ruins of the Hamburg Mine. Hadn't been there since the 1990's and things were pretty much the same, except for more debris been washed away by flooding. As I approached this area it began to thunder over Ramsey Peak and rain lightly. Made me wonder what would happen later in the day when I was up on the exposed areas near Carr Peak. As it turned out the rain ended quickly and I encountered no more the rest of the hike.

This was a photo hike and I was moving very slowly. In fact my pace was so slow I think it might have made even Tibber impatient! :lol: There were just too many flowers to resist! I was pretty tired when I hit Bear Saddle, so I took a brief break and opened a beer, which I nursed along the Crest Trail over to the Carr Peak Trail junction. Nice new thunderstorms had fired up to my south over behind Miller Peak, but they stayed there. After rounding Carr Peak (which I skipped this trip) I spooked a bear that was in the aspen zone. Didn't see him, but when I yelled out, he took off grunting and puffing away from the trail. One of the highlights of the Carr Peak portion of the hike is the exceptional run of columbines in the aspen section just below a little waterfall and stream crossing. This year was the best I've ever seen it, stretching further than usual! :D I kept savoring the flower show on the way down, eventually reaching the car as it was almost dark. What a terrific day! :y:

The only people I saw on the trail the whole day were a couple of BP guys coming up from Comfort Spring at the beginning and two Army guys hiking up late in the day about 2 miles from the parking lot.

I think maybe my photoset will upset Tibber a little, as she originally was going to be a part of this. I had told her how fantastic this place was in August. ;) However, that would have been a more involved car camp, and I decided to just make a day trip down there...much easier. ... detailpage
Named place
Named place
Carr Peak Ramsey Peak
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Extreme

dry Comfort Spring Dry Dry
Dry as usual as it is defunct. Lots of seeps in the area.
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