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mini location map2016-08-12
15 by photographer avatardieanotherday15
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McFadden Horse TrailGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 12 2016
Hiking8.25 Miles 2,184 AEG
Hiking8.25 Miles   5 Hrs      1.65 mph
2,184 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Today, I was finally able to hike the McFadden Horse Mountain Trail. I tried to hike it about a month ago, but upon reaching the trailhead I learned it was closed due to the Juniper Fire. I learned a valuable lesson about always checking whether a trail is open during the summer.

After the expiration of the closure order on July 31, I finally made it back to the Sierra Anchas today. I was eager to see what damage the fire had wrought on this area. If I'm not mistaken, the fire began not far from the trail. The first two miles of this trail show fire damage of varying intensity. The first half mile up to the saddle, the trees were lightly burned (if it all). At the saddle, burn damage becomes much more evident. Gazing out at the valley toward Aztec Peak, there is a huge swathe of forest that was obliterated by fire. The fire lightly burned the next half of the trail to the junction with the Cienega Spring Trail. Once you turn left on the McFadden Trail at this juncture, you begin a steep climb through a so-called moon crater of fire damage. The original scrub landscape of the hill is heavily burned and has seen some erosion. The trail is a little tricky during this section, but eventually you begin climbing into a part dead, partially burned trees until you reach the flat mountain top of McFadden Horse Mountain. From here, I was afraid the trail would be impossible to follow because of fire damage obliterating the cairned routes. Fortunately, the top of the mountain seems to have been untouched. The remainder of the trail until the scenic lookout is in good shape except for the occasional difficulty finding a cairn. When you reach the last half mile of the trail, you get a good view out at the Cherry Creek area. The mountainside you gaze at is heavily burned in areas and untouched in others. I suspect the Moody Ridge trail, which was a difficult trek to follow before the fire is probably impossible now. Fortunately, the mountain you are following was untouched by fire, as the rim seems to have prevent the fire from spreading.

Overall it was an excellent trek through one of Arizona's finest wildernesses!
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