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2015-02-06  
FR 560 Cooks Mesa to the New River Mountains, AZ
mini location map2015-02-06
12 by photographer avatarASUAviator
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FR 560 Cooks Mesa to the New River Mountains, AZ 
FR 560 Cooks Mesa to the New River Mountains, AZ
 
4x4 Trip avatar Feb 06 2015
ASUAviator
4x4 Trip50.00 Miles 5,000 AEG
4x4 Trip50.00 Miles   8 Hrs      6.25 mph
5,000 ft AEG
 
1st trip
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I have wanted to ride the length of FR 560 for some time now and got some time to check it out. Since I figured it would take me close, I planed on hiking up the New River Mountains high point. Once on top of Grapevine Mesa, you are presented with a nice view of the New River Mountains. The trail in between is a cap of unforgiving lava rock 10 miles long. It is extremely bumpy with a few technical sections. Once on top of 'the island' the road nears the edge of the mesa which presents an awesome view of bloody basin and pine mountain. On the map FR 560 is shown going all the way to 'top of the mountain tank'. While that used to be true, it now leads you basically to 'mescal pit tank'. I parked the quad and made my way on foot up into the mountains. The trail is difficult to follow up the foothills. It clears up again as it drops into White Dyke Canyon. As I neared the bottom I could here water running. Sure enough there was a good intermittent flow on the hike up the canyon. Soon enough it was time to split and make my way up to the high point. Chased a group of whitetail a few hundred feet up before they realized thats the way I was headed. The slopes on this range are fairly gradual and easy to travel in terms of off trail peak bagging. The views on top were rewarding. Lake Pleasant to the west, Perry Mesa and Bradshaws to the NW, Humphreys the the north, Mazzies and rim to the east, and New River Mesa and valley to the south. After some time to take it all in I headed off close to the way I came. I was happy to get back up in these mountains. They are easier to hike in then they are to reach from any angle. Many of the trails surrounding them are forgotten or unusable from flood damage. While there seems to be nothing particularly special about this range, the solitude and serenity to be found there was quite alluring.
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