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Merritt Cottonwood Loop, AZ
mini location map2014-08-24
21 by photographer avatarchumley
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Merritt Cottonwood Loop, AZ 
Merritt Cottonwood Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Aug 24 2014
chumley
Hiking4.84 Miles 622 AEG
Hiking4.84 Miles   1 Hour   52 Mns   2.99 mph
622 ft AEG      15 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
After a long hike Saturday, I wanted to get a few easier miles in to start Sunday before doing a little Hazfest reconnaissance. This short loop that linked two trails with a short road hike between them looked great.

I was absolutely stunned at the unending views from the high points on Merritt Spring Trail. It might have helped that the weather was perfect, with puffy white clouds dotting the sky, and providing frequent relief from the sun. This would be an oven on a sunny summer afternoon.

On 705 I took the road less traveled to be closer to the pines in the creek bottom and it turned out to be a bad move. Stick to the road for quicker moving and comfortable non-soccer-ball-rocks under your feet.

Passed by a couple of other trail junctions I'd like to explore in the future before visiting the old Cement Trough Spring. Nice old stone spring box here that isn't in use anymore.

Took Cottonwood Mountain #8 back up to CR68. I saw a deer, and with the bow season having just started, I caught a glimpse of three hunters that were following it. I was in full bumblebob gear, but somehow managed to walk to within 3 feet of the hunters unseen and unheard. I apologetically asked if I had interfered with their hunt, and only then realized that they had not seen the deer that I had seen -- when all were in my view at the same time! I had to laugh at their ineptitude. These three were decked out head to toe in camouflage, including full face masks! I'm pretty sure I know who went home empty handed!

Oh anyway, amusing end to an easy loop. I was back at the trailhead a few minutes later!

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Cement Trough Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Historical stone springbox is dry, but modern box is full of water and had a light flow.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Merritt Spring Dripping Dripping
This is just a seep with some muddy pools of water in the grass. Historical locations have dried up and it appears the water now surfaces in different spots than in years past. All within a 100 yard radius.
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