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First Water Lower Creek Shuttle
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mini location map2016-03-05
13 by photographer avatarsnakemarks
photographer avatar
 
First Water Lower Creek ShuttlePhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Canyoneering avatar Mar 05 2016
snakemarks
Canyoneering5.75 Miles 300 AEG
Canyoneering5.75 Miles
300 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Since I was taking my friend and fellow FS Volunteer this time, we were able to set up a shuttle, leaving my Jeep up by Canyon Lake and driving her truck back to First Water. Gearing up at the horse lot, we noticed a large group gathering to hike the same trail we were, so in a rush to get out ahead of them, I left my windbreaker behind in the truck. Wasn't too concerned. I probably wouldn't need it and if I did, I'd just have to tough it out. I need to be less of a wimp, anyway.

When we got to the creek, we were amazed at how long the water levels have been holding out there and still flowing. I was crossing my fingers that the waterfall spot near the end would be passable and we wouldn't have to turn around and hike all the way back, defeating the whole purpose of the shuttle. You can't really predict this in advance, so you just have to take your chances.

For the first half of the hike, there was plenty of water, but it diminished quickly after that and when we reached the waterfall it was bone dry. At the bottom of it, the water magically reappeared and continued down the canyon. This is where the scenery kicks it into high gear. After a short trek through a fantasy landscape, you reach the slot, where it's time to go for a swim. Water was C-O-L-D and over our heads. We put the packs in a big dry sack and took the plunge. Dry sack from Walmart gets an A+.

The trail going up out of the canyon is a bit sketchy at first, but it quickly improves. As we got near the top, my friend commented on how perfect everything went and I had to admit this was one of my better trips - weather was ideal, my route finding was spot on (rare), nobody was bleeding (also rare), the rattlesnake I nearly stepped on wasn't in the mood to engage (lucky), we got all the way through and made pretty good time. Instead of basking in the glory of my success, alarm bells were going off in my head and I could feel some kind of dread slowly rising. Smooth, incident-free adventures are just not how I roll (unfortunately) and we still weren't home yet. I knew something was going to go wrong and the only thing left was the Jeep ride back.

Reaching the top, I was relieved to see that the Jeep was still there. I was half expecting it to be gone. The dread is still building and I stood there just looking at the Jeep and waiting for the punchline... and then I got it. Before I even unzipped my pack, I knew my keys weren't in it. They were in the pocket of my windbreaker in my friends truck back at First Water. (Now, that's more like it!)

Time to hitch a ride. That should be a cinch, because who wouldn't want to pick up two quasi-damp, tough looking women with wet, sandy shoes? We didn't bother the snowbirds coming back from Tortilla Flat, but kept our eyes pealed for other hikers or a local with a pick-up truck we could jump into the back of. Within 10 minutes, we got our hiker... a college age guy recently from Texas. He had done some decent hikes in the Supes, so we all had a lot to talk about on the way back to First Water. He was working off a crummy map in a hiking guidebook, so my friend gifted him with a really good map of the Superstition Wilderness. We said he could drop us off at the beginning of the road, but he was kind enough to drive us down to the horse lot. Really nice kid. Thanks, man - you rock!
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max First Water Creek Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Hackberry Spring Dripping Dripping
Roots growing into a crack in the pipe are blocking the flow. We reamed it out last season, but it needs to be done again.
_____________________
I'm at home in the wilderness... it's civilization I have problems with! ](*,)
HAZ Member
snakemarks'
152 Photosets

  2016-03-05
  2016-02-10
  2015-04-03
  2015-02-13
  2015-02-08
  2015-02-06
  2015-01-06
  2014-10-02
  2014-09-28
  2014-08-25
  2014-04-24
  2014-04-06
  2014-03-07
  2014-02-14
  2013-12-26
  2013-10-09
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  2013-03-19
  2013-03-11
  2013-02-22
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