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Sophie's Flat
2 Photosets

2014-11-14  
2013-12-01  
mini location map2014-11-14
12 by photographer avatarblack_toes
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Sophie's FlatPrescott, AZ
Prescott, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 14 2014
black_toes
Hiking3.25 Miles 154 AEG
Hiking3.25 Miles   1 Hour   53 Mns   2.29 mph
154 ft AEG      28 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Had never hiked this area NE of Wickenburg, so thought I would take MJ along and give it a try. The TH and large parking lot off Blue Tank Rd were easy to find. There is a toilet but no water, a kiosk with an all but useless map. The map outlines only the 7.1-mile "A" loop. Nothing shown re the shorter B, C and D loops. If the guest book in the registry box is an indication, the trail gets little use. A single hiker from Grants Pass, OR, apparently had done the trail earlier in the day. Two RVs were parked up the hill. A corral and a blue water tank were partly hidden in the distance.

The well-marked trail soon drops down into a ravine and leads to a long slog through a sandy wash. Equestrians travel these washes, and their horses have broken up the silt into ankle-deep sand. We made good time by staying on the hardened silt at the sides but with all the bushes and trees it was difficult. Because we started late, budgeting time was important. Figured we had about 1:20 before turning around. These trails are light and somewhat overgrown and navigating them in darkness was not an appealing idea. We kept hoping the "B" loop would take us back to the TH but as time passed it became clear by my GPS the route was taking us farther away. So we reluctantly reversed course at 1620 faced with a 1724 sunset and arrived back at the TH at 1705 and enjoyed another beautiful sunset.

The land is largely pristine desert although a "patty" or two indicate someone is running a small herd of cattle in here on BLM land. My favorite prickly pear, the Pancake, small-spined and bluish, likes it here as does the buckhorn cholla. Lots of the usual suspects -- palo verde, brittlebush, some creosote and mesquite, a few Saguaro, not to mention several plants I couldn't ID. Trails are narrow and more rocky than I'm used to. Will try the Flat again sometime when I have more time. There are two peaks to the NW which might prove an interesting excursion. Saw no wildlife to mention, unless you consider dens of black ants. We heard sounds of ATVs in the distance but none was seen, thanks be to the gods.
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242 Photosets

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