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Turk - 5057 - Three Sisters Loop, AZ
mini location map2017-01-14
15 by photographer avatarjacobemerick
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Turk - 5057 - Three Sisters Loop, AZ 
Turk - 5057 - Three Sisters Loop, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 14 2017
Hiking16.50 Miles 4,960 AEG
Hiking16.50 Miles   8 Hrs   20 Mns   2.25 mph
4,960 ft AEG   1 Hour    Break
 no routes
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Heavily inspired by @trekkin_gecko fantastic loop I headed towards Carney TH in hopes of finishing before the forecasted afternoon rains. Barely made it, but just barely.

Turned off onto Lost Goldmine just before entering wilderness. Enjoyed this trail more than I thought I would - lots of little up/downs, and the dim bulk of the Supes reaching up in the darkness mixed with the nearness of overreaching branches in the headlamp made for a nice combination. Turk's Head was fun, even if the first ten minutes of climb was all prickly predawn guesswork and not a lot of luck. Only made one Huge Mistake(tm) on the way up and tried climbing up a chute that didn't want to be climbed. Slid back down on my belly and felt bad about my life choices. Found a different way and watched the first part of sunrise from the peak, got impatient, and headed back down (easier to find cairns in the daylight) to finish up Lost Goldmine.

First part of Hiero was a zoo. Parking lot was filling up fast and there were dozens of groups on the trail. Tried to push past the crowds quickly to start on the real climb of the day - 5057. Trail was meaner than I remembered, might have had something to do with the direction (I only took it downhill before). It was well-cairned and the brush was trimmed back, it's just a steep trail. Stopped for two good breaks along the climb, the first time to drink a liter and the second to pull a liter from a pool near the last haul up, and then hit the saddle. Skies looked unfriendly so after a few photos I took the Ridgeline trail and zipped up to the peak of 5057. And by zipped it was a mix of hobble and limp - leg cramps started on Hiero.

From the peak it looked like most of the storm was going to east of Peralta, but then I saw some lightening near Superior and got scairt so I rolled down off the peak and started towards Three Sisters. Trail out to Three Sisters was faint and hard to make out so I just stuck to the top of the ridge. Didn't go all the way out on the sisters acos cramping was getting bad and it didn't look like a good place to stumble, just took a few pics and stared down sadly at little sister. Has anyone even done that one recently?

Descent to West Boulder Saddle from Three Sisters seemed to take forever, especially after bumping into the creek. Cairns were confusing and I got turned around in the same place as last time in this section, so I used the last of my phone's battery and RS to figure out that right direction. Creeks had a good amount of water and I wondered what sort of fun backpacking loops you could start from the saddle. Descent down Carney was a descent down Carney. First person seen since leaving the 'main' stopping point on Hiero was trying to find Cave Trail (except for the two ridgeline hikers I woo-hooed at from 5057 and didn't see again) and then there was another dozen groups between the split and parking lot. Parking lot was full... Geesh, who dropped the Lure Module at Wave Cave? Jumped in van just as the big drops began to fall :y:

A surprisingly quiet and enjoyable loop, as long as you can ignore the crowds at the two trailheads.

(Aside: did not post RS route because battery died on West Boulder Saddle and incomplete loops are weird. Can post if peeps be curious.)

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Hieroglyphic Canyon Light flow Light flow
Flowing water where the trail last leaves the creek, several good pools there.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Hieroglyphic Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Water running from pool to pool to pool.
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