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Telephone Ridge Trail #103 - Chevelon
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mini location map2012-10-20
15 by photographer avatarchumley
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Telephone Ridge Trail #103 - ChevelonPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 20 2012
chumley
Hiking2.45 Miles 999 AEG
Hiking2.45 Miles   1 Hour   45 Mns   1.40 mph
999 ft AEG
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
After a good day exploring a few different hikes along the rim, I decided to get the Chumley Chuckwagon and mobile bartending service into action and deliver some delicious Four Peaks beer to a Hazzer I knew to be overnighting along Chevelon Creek.

I had never been down the Telephone Trail before, but have always enjoyed Chevelon Lake, and the creek immediately upstream of the lake, so I wanted to see this area as well. I couldn't spend the night, but I figured I could bring a few beers down and was planning on making myself some dinner and hanging out for an hour or two before heading home.

But when I got to the trailhead, I didn't see a car I recognized, which was puzzling. I hadn't said I would stop by, since I wasn't sure of that myself, but I was surprised when I didn't see the squirrel's car. Luckily there's amazing Verizon 3G coverage (???!) here and I was able to confirm that the backpacking trip didn't happen.

I still wanted to see the area, so I headed down the trail, leaving most of the beer and dinner in the car since there would be nobody to share it with!

The hike down is steep and exposed, until it rounds the corner and gets into a nice shaded canyon. The valley by the creek is pretty open, making me think there had been a fire there years ago. I explored the creek, both up and downstream, had a beer, and took some photos.

There's great camping options here, and I could definitely see myself spending a night or two in this area in the future.

On the hike out, I avoided the shaded canyon portion and just hiked straight up the exposed ridgeline. (See GPS track). It shaves 3/10th of a mile off the already short hike and is clearly used by a lot of the hikers on this route, despite not being the official trail.

One note about the last mile or so of road to the trailhead. It definitely requires high-clearance. When dry it's easy if you go slow, but there's evidence of some huge mud holes that are probably very treacherous when wet. Some are extremely deep, and more troublesome, if they were full of water, some have large rocks or obstacles at the bottom that would prevent simply "bombing" through at high speed to prevent getting stuck. So keep that in mind if you're headed out early in spring or during the monsoon.
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