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Tibber Loop - two thirds, AZ
mini location map2015-02-16
32 by photographer avatartibber
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Tibber Loop - two thirds, AZ 
Tibber Loop - two thirds, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 16 2015
Hiking6.41 Miles 1,819 AEG
Hiking6.41 Miles   6 Hrs   39 Mns   1.44 mph
1,819 ft AEG   2 Hrs   12 Mns Break
1st trip
Partners none no partners
an old Montana acquaintance/classmate that I've hooked up with via FB was in town. We really hadn't seen each other since high school. I told her to bring her hiking boots. I decided on this Loop; didn't know if I would do the whole thing but at least part of it. Deborah had hiked the Everest Base Camp route in India last year so I figured she could handle about anything I tossed out at her. I put together a pack for her and picked her up on Baseline just off the 60.

We got a chance to catch up on things during our drive.
And lucky for us, the longhorns were out so a photo op was completed before even making it to the trail. We found a spot to park in the upper lot, geared up and started hiking on the Peralta Trail. I told her to hike ahead if she liked as I knew she could probably hike circles around me but she stayed with me most of the day. Right off the bat she's asking me about the plant life :) and I knew we would get along famously. There wasn't any water in the first creek crossing as we made our way up the bedrock.

I stopped and showed her the photo booth though I didn't make her go up on it; the sun was in a terrible angle anyway. We stopped at a couple other areas where I would tell her stories of my other times on this trail; especially with my brother and the kids back in the day before I was more than just a casual hiker. I also showed her where we would eventually be when we got to Geronimo's Cave. It was hazy as we looked toward Picketpost. We continued on the trail and I kept waiting for that one steeper switchback but it didn't happen or I just didn't notice it. We would encounter people going up and coming back down. I'm always excited once you get up on that tier as you head toward the Balancing Rock and with the Cave Trail area across the way. I was curious to see if there would be any water at that one crossing before you head up the bedrock and there was, though not much.

I love this walk up the bedrock, reminds me of old Roman roads though this is solid. The sky was starting to get some broken clouds so I was glad of that. We worked our way up to that one area where there all sorts of different rock colors and I tried to explain what had caused all of this. I had the hardest time saying the word, "cataclysmic" ](*,) event and hoped that she understood what I was trying to describe from time to time. We walked by the cave in the tuff, I showed her the evil eye rock and as we got closer to the saddle I told her she would have to wait so that I could film her as she came around the corner. Other folks were getting closer too and knew what I was up to. "Okay, you can keeping coming up the trail now" I yelled. The film was rolling and as hoped I got the "wow" moment :y: . I did that with my cousin too and it turned out so well on the video.

We took a quick break here and discovered why her uncle said the oranges he had were better for juicing :lol: . Next it was over to the Gunsight and she anxiously climbed up it but admitted it was a little steeper than it looked. I got an awesome photo of her; well several actually. At all the points of interest I would have to take a photo of her with her camera too; altho she's into the selfie stuff. Next it was across the saddle toward the Cave Trail. Along the way we saw this most beautiful bush. I had never seen one like that before. With all the rain we had this winter, who knows what else will pop up that we've never seen.

As we headed down the Cave Trail, a rather large group caught up with us. We let them lead as we continued to gawk around and I tried to identify the plants and cactus. I also told her this is where I wanted my ashes but wasn't sure my brother could hike them here. She said she would be happy to but then realized, she might be dead too ;) . We made our way to the next viewpoint where we ran into the big group. We ended up intermingling with them. It was easier than waiting or trying to get ahead. There was also another group of 3 girls hiking too. There are a couple dicey points on the way below the Cave area but she managed fine. In fact, I didn't want to take the long way around so we headed straight up. I told her the rock is pretty sticky so you don't have to worry about sliding.

Both groups were at the Cave area so it was rather noisy. I suggested we go up to the second tier and have lunch with a view. Would have been much better if it hadn't been hazy far away but the view is still stunning. Fortunately we did get the cave to ourselves for a little while as everyone else took off. We would not see them the rest of the day. In fact, we would only see one other hiker the rest of our trek. After our leisurely lunch it was time to head for some more excitement as we climbed down the Devil's Slide and we did the "rub a dub dub, Deb's in the Devil's Tub". We worked our way down the Bald Man's Forehead and then over to Catherdal Rocks. I let her lead and as usual up there, she went one way with the cairns and I wanted to go the other way :roll: .

By this time I decided we really would barely have enough time for Lower Bark's and my legs were a bit tired from the previous day's hike too, so we meandered the rest of the way peeking over edges and going to areas I normally don't take the time for. In fact, I saw the Bluff Springs Trail below us and had just never noticed it before. We made our way into the bowl and up to the saddle near the area where you head down to join the Bluff Springs Trail. I lost the trail for a bit however she wasn't worried as she said we would run into it and we did. At the bottom we encountered another hiker who inquired about the Cave Trail. I told him it was a bit more difficult to follow it on the way up and we wished him well.

I decided to take Deborah over to Lower Barks Saddle on the Bluff Springs Trail so I could tease her for next time she came. I could see there was definitely water in Lower Barks Canyon. We sat here and took in the view as Weaver's Needle was peaking over the edge of Upper Barks. I tried to imagine where Kelly was last weekend on her climb. We think we spotted the area but weren't sure. She tried to shoot some panorama's. Now it was time to make our way back to the TH. Coming around past the drainage the side of the hill looked so green and of course, the view coming around that top corner to Barkley Basin is always impressive :DANCE: . I stopped at a couple more viewpoints so the she could look up Peralta Canyon as well as over to where we were near Geronimo's Cave.

Down Cardiac Hill we went arriving at the Trailhead all smiles. We got another hiker to take our picture. I gave her the choice of Mexican or AZ Brewery for the post-hike meal. I was glad she chose the Brewery. Of course I tempted her with the idea of duck fat fries and frenched chicken wings. On the way out we got to see the Longhorns again. The sun was now at an angle where you could see how incredibly green the desert floor was too.

Unfortunately we ran into traffic :x on the 60 into Gold Canyon because the Hwy Patrol apparently needs to control the lights. I was going to stop at Silly Mtn to take her thru the Interpretive area but now it was getting later. So we headed to the brewery which once again I missed but I got google to work and found I had driven past it. I need to remember it's across from the Sonic. But no matter as the place was packed to the gills so we opted for Macayos except that on the way there, since she was going to Mazatlan for 10 days, I made a quick turn to Coco's. I hadn't eaten there in decades. This was a good choice, other than the beer selection. We both enjoyed our meals and then I took her back home.

Fortunately she had a great time and I got some great pics. Hopefully she'll come down again next winter and we can do a couple of different hikes.
Named place
Named place
Barkley Basin
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
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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