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Apache Badlands, AZ
mini location map2018-02-03
5 by photographer avatarMountainMatt
photographer avatar
 
Apache Badlands, AZ 
Apache Badlands, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 03 2018
MountainMatt
Hiking3.69 Miles 252 AEG
Hiking3.69 Miles   2 Hrs   6 Mns   2.64 mph
252 ft AEG      42 Mns Break25 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I feel in love with the landscape my first trip to PeFo last weekend and was craving to see some more surreal badland landscapes in my near future.
That lead to hours of map research until my eyes hurt as I found so many appealing areas but they all seemed to be on private land.
I did my usual OCD prep of map beta and purchased another state land trust permit for the year but after viewing land ownership I knew it may be a checkerboarded mess but I went for it!

After turning off the remote highway on to the marked county road and not seeing a single sign of private property I figured I was in the clear as I began to immediately see a dream like landscape.

I could see houses away in the distance from the nearby unincorporated community and the snowy slopes of Mt. Baldy way beyond that as I made camp in a unique open valley.
Set off into the unknown almost quite literally as the formations I was headed for are nameless just like nearly every hill and mound in this particular area.

After reaching my destination I climbed to the spongy summit of the broken landscapes highest point and soaked in some of the most eerily beautiful views I've seen.
During the day with harsh light the landscape is definitely cool but it lacks a certain pop but just like last weekend once the sun set the terrain just transforms and every individual color just seems to gleam with brilliance.

I took photos until the light show was completely extinguished because the way the sun sets out here allows the camera to pick up every last strand of light when in reality the scene is basically darkness to the naked eye which is another thing similar to last weekend's trip.

After arriving back to a 5 star camp complete with steaks, whiskey and even perfect cell service I knew it was too good to be true.
Around 10pm or so I had a truck pull up on me greeted by the local ranchers who very kindly notified me I was on private land.
They didn't mind I was there for the night and we chatted for a few minutes because I had questions about a few other roads and spots which they notified is all on private property which is tough to know because it really is some of Arizona's best!

The area I hiked to that day was on a sliver of state trust land but it is surrounded by private land and in these parts the best bet is to leave it be entirely, needless to say it probably won't stop me as there is just too much out there to explore, just need to figure out the legal way of going about it.

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517 Photosets

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