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Jack's Back Tour 2012, AZ
mini location map2012-11-17
44 by photographer avatartibber
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Jack's Back Tour 2012, AZ 
Jack's Back Tour 2012, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 17 2012
Hiking5.49 Miles 1,357 AEG
Hiking5.49 Miles   5 Hrs   15 Mns   1.88 mph
1,357 ft AEG   2 Hrs   20 Mns Break
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Ambika and I both had late afternoon engagements but wanted to get in a quick Supes hike. I offered up some options to Ambika and I think she picked Massacre Falls. And then I thot, this is the kind of hike I think Jack likes so I PMed him. He offered an alternative to just the Massacre Falls. Sounded good to me and that way, Ambika and I could just hike and not think. However, we did end up having to think :-k but only to spot the cairns :) as we went cross country.

We met up with Jack, parked at the Crosscut Trail and instead of heading right (west), we took the eastern part of the trail toward the Praying Hands. Shockingly, we started out with a dark overcast day; such a rare thing in the Supes. We pretty much stayed on the trail and then went off of it just for a tad even tho there were some cairns but this divergence gave us a pretty good view for a photo op. And then it was up to the rock with the slots.

This rock cropping invited you right up the slot; I went first. As I got toward the top, Ambika and Jack asked what was on the other side and I yelled back, "Believe it or not, a trail". We climbed up to the east side of the rock cropping and had a quick snack as well as taking in the views.

We then headed to the SW to the next rock cropping that had an alcove in it. Jack went to the end of what looked like the entrance to a way to climb up to the alcove. We ended up turning around at a dead end that went straight up and went back to the beginning of the area below the alcove as Ambika was making her way up. At the western edge of the alcove was a fire ring. We sat at the edge of the alcove to once again enjoy our views.

Next we headed down and back the way we came before heading right on some sort of trail that had some cairns taking us across a drainage. However, we later saw that we should have headed around the west side of the rock cropping and just stayed on the west side of the drainage which takes you back to what Jack calls Horseshoe Falls (dry). As it was, we decided after we had gotten on top of the east side of the drainage that we wanted to go back over rather than fight the brush up to the Falls. In a couple places, there were cairns taking us back so we followed those down into the drainage where we stayed until the Falls.

The Falls area was pretty cool :) . We saw some more cairns so decided to follow those up and above the Falls. It looks like the cairns continue to the SW for a bit; don't know where they lead. There are also cairns taking you across the Falls and up toward the NW. We stopped at the top of the Falls for our group photo and then headed down and directly out from the Falls back up on the top of the drainage and over to the other side and back in and out of another drainage : rambo : .

We continue to follow the cairns, find the remains of a tortuga shell, and then come to the top of a large drainage that we need to cross to get up to Massacre Grounds. We decide to head north down this embankment so that we can cross into the lower part of the drainage and head back up the hill. We passed thru a pretty section with very healthy Teddy Chollas. Once we got to the top, we hooked up with the main Massacre Falls trail. We had seen a few people on the trail from quite a ways a way earlier but during our short 15-20 minutes or so here, we would see nearly a dozen or so hikers including the two we had started out with first thing in the AM.

I didn't know exactly where the Falls was and then when I saw where all the people were coming from, I said "wha la". It's up there. Well being as we were short on time, once again Massacre Falls would have to wait ](*,) . The last time I was up here in 2009 with Kat and my brother, we ran out of time as well. So Massacre Falls, one of these days...

On our way back down we would encounter a large scout troop. Some of them didn't look like they would make it and the water they had might get them to the top but certainly not back down. I hope they all made it okay :pray: . Quite frankly, I was surprised at how many people we would see on this trail. After getting past the slippery hill, we would pass another group that had gone by us while we were eating our snack.

The surprise on this hike is the trail back over to the Crosscut TH from the old Massacre TH. What a delightful trail that is with great views and flora. And as is typical of my Trail Angel, as a tribute to Jack and his brother Chuck's ritual, we got a beer and peanuts in the shell as our reward :DANCE: . What a great day we had! It's good to finally be back in the Supes!

Here is the video: [ youtube video ]
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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