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Marsh Valley Loop with Black Top Mesa detour, AZ
mini location map2015-02-14
13 by photographer avatarbrianwinsor
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Marsh Valley Loop with Black Top Mesa detour, AZ 
Marsh Valley Loop with Black Top Mesa detour, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Feb 14 2015
brianwinsor
Backpack17.50 Miles 2,330 AEG
Backpack17.50 Miles3 Days         
2,330 ft AEG30 LBS Pack
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1st trip
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Decided I needed some alone time in the Superstitions. Marsh Valley Loop was the perfect route. I began at the First Water TH with my wife and a friend of hers. They walked with me nearly to Boulder Canyon. We had a nice lunch near second water canyon just before Boulder Canyon. I headed out on my own. Boulder Canyon had lots of water flowing. The first wildlife I saw was a naked woman sunbathing on the rocks. Not the wildlife I was expecting but nature has its beauty in all forms.
I camped near Squaw Canyon under the magnificent view of Black Mountain. As I was eating my dinner of rice side and lemon pepper tuna (total yum!) a white tail deer wandered into my camp. I sat very still and managed to get some good video footage.
The next morning I hiked towards Bull Pass and went around the south side of Black Top Mesa through upper Black Top Mesa Pass and down to East Boulder Canyon. The views of Palomino Mountain, Weavers Needle, and Black Top Mesa makes this a spectacular route. I then hiked up Bull Pass from the southeast and found the trail to the top of Black Top Mesa. It is a strenuous hike but well worth it. That night I camped on Black Top Mesa. The panoramic views from Black Top Mesa are so beautiful at sunset. I spotted a chuckwalla among the rocks.
The next morning I hiked down to the junction of Bull Pass, East Boulder Canyon and Dutchman's trail. Nearly walked on a 3' rattle snake on the way out. Thank goodness it was very loud! I waited for it to slide off into the brush, bid it a good day, and trekked on. It was a great hike out the rest of the way to First Water Trail head where I met my wife.
A total of 17.5 leisurely miles.
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