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Powers Garden Loop and Rhodes Peak, AZ
mini location map2014-03-21
20 by photographer avatarGrottoGirl
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Powers Garden Loop and Rhodes Peak, AZ 
Powers Garden Loop and Rhodes Peak, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Mar 21 2014
GrottoGirl
Backpack32.57 Miles 9,326 AEG
Backpack32.57 Miles3 Days         
9,326 ft AEG40 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
On Friday, we hiked into Powers Garden via the Tortilla trail. We arrived at the Garden and found a couple of groups already there. So, we found a nice quiet site tucked out of the way, yet still close to water. That night, we started in on the two boxes of TJ style Oreos Joel and I had brought. We had a nice juniper fragrant fire and then retired near backpacker's midnight.

Saturday we got started about 8 AM and headed up to the junction with the South Field Canyon trail and the Tent Lookout Trail (which appeared to be labeled the Field Canyon trail). Joel and I had a disagreement about which way to go. I had downloaded hazbot tracks therefore I wanted to take the South Field Canyon trail. I was overruled because the South Field Canyon trail was not really labeled and the other trail would be along a ridge line so there wouldn't be any significant elevation loss. So off we went along the Tent Lookout Trail to the East Divide Trail. Along the trail was a bit overgrown but we didn't think anything about it. When we left the Old Tent Lookout site, we had a hard time keeping on the trail. We spent a lot of time getting ourselves back to the trail just to lose it again. Basically, there isn't a trail left unless you call a trail bed that you would have to crawl along in order to stay on route a trail. Yet, I still haven't met a bushwhack I did not like. The challenge of trying to stay on track is always one I'll try even if I fail many times. Finally, we hit the junction with the South Field Canyon Trail. I had a moment of satisfaction to hear Joel tell me that I had been right. In all I won - no matter what - since I like bushwhacks and I also like to be right in the end! From the junction we followed a well defined trail up to the ridge. From there we followed really large cairns for a couple miles. Not much of a trail was defined between the cairns but the travel was relatively easy. Finally we approached Rhodes peak. By looking at the map and the terain it looked like an approach from the trail up the end of the peak would be the best, but we wanted to see what else the peak had to offer. We waited until the trail almost started to drop elevation and then we made our push. Along the way we got a great view down into the San Pedro Valley and a canyon descending from our ridge called Buck Canyon that had amazing cliffs. It was a nice scramble to the top through some volcanic welded tuff. The views from the top were stunning in all directions. We sat and enjoyed our lunch and debated our options. Originally we were going to do a big loop encompassing Pipestem canyon, however the bushwhack took up a lot of valuable time. We decided to return the way we came but head down South Field Canyon. South Fiel Canyon was delightful. One memory that will stick with me for a while is the amount of older growth junipers and ponderosa pines. One Ponderosa filled the air with butterscotch fumes that were abosolutely delicious! Close to the bottom of the canyon was a dam that had been slitted in. I was still amazing to see the masonary work.

We returned to camp and was joined by UpHill Junkie and partner. They struggled with filtering the water that comes from Powers Garden Spring. The Spring itself was the lowest I've seen it. There was barely two pools of water with a mineral blue tinge. The pipe near our camp delivered about 1 liter in less than a minute, if you let the pipe full between collections. Joel and I have mostly given up filtering which we fully appreciate whenever we watch our friends filter water for more than an hour!

In the morning, we had a late departure time of 9 AM set, but we left a bit earlier as everyone was ready. We made sure everyone made the turn off the Rattlesnake Canyon trail. The climb up Corral Canyon was steady. We had a stop at Corral Springs. After the spring we started to get views of the East Divide and Rhodes Peak. Nothing is more satisfying then identifying where you recently hiked. We took another break at the saddle and then started the long descent back to the car. Luckily the terrain was varied. We saw a couple of really cool dikes. This trip probably is a geologists dream!
Named place
Named place
Powers Garden Spring

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Corral Spring Dripping Dripping
Few tiny pools

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Field Canyon Spring Dripping Dripping
Tiny catchment had water.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Horse Canyon Tank 1-25% full 1-25% full
I didn't look in the tank but there was water. The cows were near.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Mud Spring Dripping Dripping
Enough for dog water :)

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Powers Garden Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
At the pipe midway to the cabins. The spring had two pools. Neater level was a lot lower than normal.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max South Field Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
Saw a couple pools in the canyon...
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