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White Box & Hanging Gardens of WCC
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mini location map2016-07-23
42 by photographer avatarsurvivordude
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White Box & Hanging Gardens of WCCCamp Verde, AZ
Camp Verde, AZ
Canyoneering avatar Jul 23 2016
survivordude
Canyoneering7.60 Miles 1,600 AEG
Canyoneering7.60 Miles2 Days         
1,600 ft AEG40 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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HighC480
With the summer heat, staying so busy, and the back issues, I haven't been out hiking for 2 months and this was a great jump back in! Took 2 of the kids, Gabby Dog, and my buddy Jamaal down to the Hanging Gardens for a few days. This is my 6th time to this part of WCC and am always glad to share it with anyone brave enough to make the trip.
Got rained on pretty good Friday night so the roads were very muddy and I wasn't taking any chances on that god-forsaken 142A, so we parked a few miles down the road. Started down the hill early Saturday morning and that AZ sun was already burning it up. That first splash of water is so refreshing! When we got to the creek we actually ran into a few guys I used to work with; Small world!! They had planned to camp at the gardens, also, but were extremely under prepared and never even made it there. Down inside that canyon is another world altogether. It is hard to believe this place exists in Arizona. Jamaal was in awe the entire time. It is so amazing how green and alive it is compared to the surrounding desert. The views were breathtaking as usual, the swimming sections were fun as usual, the underwater rocks were slippery as usual, and everyone fell and got banged up several times.. as usual. Between the last big swimmer and the gardens there is a TON of poison ivy. All of us wore long socks and knew exactly which plants to avoid, and as of this writing - NO ITCHING!! A lot of the beaches we used to fish for crawdads were all overgrown, however some awesome person had left a trap so we baited it up and were able to have one of the famous crawdad dinners that WCC and I are known for. The kids and dog had a great time swimming in the pool and waterfalls at the gardens. Hammock camped at the gardens for the night. Waking up next to that waterfall and in that lush environment is such a great feeling to have, I could have stayed there for a week, but alas, we still have bills to pay in the real world. Saw my first rattlesnake in the wild! Saw a lot of squirrels, a lot of lizards, and a lot of different cool looking birds. Came back out Sunday afternoon/evening avoiding the sun. Fortunately we able to hitch a ride back to the truck by some fellow hikers and soon to be HAZ'ers!
During the two days we saw 25 people in this part of the canyon. 25!! Maybe due to the restrictions at Fossil Creek or maybe its just becoming more well known, but this trip has become quite popular and this concerns me for a lot of reasons. There was a lot of trash in the canyon. Some lady got stuck in the mud while on the 'road'. There were several people who were not prepared physically or gear-wise and did not belong down there. But who am I to judge? I brought 2 of my kids and a dog along.. Overall had a great trip! It was nice to get back into nature and share such an amazing place with my kiddos and good friend.

Tips for the hike:

Have a good truck with a lot of clearance, dont chance that 'road'.
Skip the sandals and wear durable shoes with a good sole.
Know what poison ivy looks like. Wear pants or long socks and avoid it!
Dont bring the kitchen sink.
Be in shape and know how to swim.
Dry bag your stuff. Floating your pack on a tube never works out.
Plan your hike out for later in the day after the sun is setting to avoid the roasting while hiking up the hill.
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survivordude's
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