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Cave Creek Trail #4
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mini location map2017-08-27
25 by photographer avatarDarthStiller
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Cave Creek Trail #4Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 27 2017
DarthStiller
Hiking11.70 Miles 1,344 AEG
Hiking11.70 Miles   5 Hrs   50 Mns   2.01 mph
1,344 ft AEG
 
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mt98dew
This hike really needs to have its own description. I might get on that, or maybe Brian will. Thanks to @Oregon_Hiker for posting his triplog and GPS route of this one to give me the idea.

I had originally planned to try this one back in June before things got really hot, but then that heatwave hit us, and it seemed like a better idea to postpone it until the high temps cooled down to 105. Things were cooler at the start of this week, but then it began to heat up a bit as the weekend approached. Fortunately, it wasn't so bad to make this undoable.

We got started at 6:40am. Upon arrival at the TH, I noticed that my phone charger in the car wasn't plugged in all the way, so my phone had drained down to 56%. Fortunately I had my power bank with me. I hooked it up to my phone, with the wire over my shoulder from the upper pack to the phone on my shoulder strap. After an hour or so, I noticed it was up to 100%, so it didn't take too long.

We took the Cave Creek Trail north and then took the side trail by the sign 2 miles in to the left, off towards the petroglyphs, which we already saw 2 months ago when we saw the ruins by Chalk Canyon. I noticed a couple more glyphs I didn't see last time and also noticed the metate holes. A mile or so further up we reached 6L Ranch and wandered around some of the side trails there. The old corrals have the typical barbed wire and branch fences, but those also have rock walls built adjacent to them. These walls look similar to those seen at nearby Indian ruins in this area. During most of this section of the hike, the sun was still low in the sky, giving us a lot of shade and cool temps until we arrived at the ranch.

From 6L Ranch we took the trail that heads uphill towards the Cave Creek Trail #4. Not very far past 6L Ranch, there is another petroglyph right on the trail. The trail heads up a moderately steep hill and then levels out. During this part, the trail was very faint in spots and we noticed that we easily were off the trail and the posted track. However, this turned out to be a very good thing for us because even before we noticed that we were off trail, we noticed pottery sherds all over the ground. Turns out we stumbled on yet another Indian ruin in this area. As we looked around, I noticed some walls that have been eroded badly as well as grown over. We could have easily spent a couple hours checking out this area to hunt out more ruins, but we were barely halfway done with our planned hike.

As we finally got back up to the Cave Creek Trail, we wandered over to the plane wreckage and checked that out. It was surprising how small this wreckage appeared. It appears that the plane had to have been very small, but it's so old it's kind of hard to tell.

We headed back on the Cave Creek Trail, taking the little shortcut just north of the sign along Cave Creek 2 miles in. It was feeling a little hot the last couple hours, but nothing really bad. Just enough to make you appreciate the AC on the ride home.
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