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mini location map2018-06-03
13 by photographer avatarDarthStiller
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Alta - Bajada LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jun 03 2018
DarthStiller
Hiking8.80 Miles 1,996 AEG
Hiking8.80 Miles   4 Hrs   53 Mns   1.80 mph
1,996 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
The only other time I did this loop was over 17 years ago. :o I guess I'm getting old now. And I've been living out here for quite some time now. It's been so long that I really don't have many memories at all of this, especially the Alta Trail. the only thing I really remember from then is that it was springtime and the grasses and vegetation were pretty thick and I had a rash on my shins and calves that lasted for over a month.

I was hoping to add some spurs to this loop to add some mileage, but the only one I did was to Maricopa Peak. There's a trail there, but it's rough, so it's still kind of like going off trail. That took some time, so I really only did the loop. I did hike up to the other two nearby little peaks, since I was up there already. On Maricopa Peak, I saw two other hikers approaching from the east ridge, which appears to be completely off trail. The got to the peak as I was heading over to the other nearby "twin" peak. I could hear their voices and I thought they were making their way over there as well and maybe making a loop back onto the Alta Trail somewhere, but as I headed further westward, they were gone. The one hiker had a hood on. I've been hiking with a hooded t-shirt now for over a year for sun protection on my neck and ears, so I was surprised to see another hiker sporting the same look. 8)

The Alta Trail was really nice. the ascent in the morning was nice because I started from the San Juan Trailhead, deliberately to stay on the west side of the ridge and avoid the sun during the hardest part of the hike. Good plan. Even with the views into downtown Phoenix, I really like the scenery up there. The ascent was moderately strenuous, and I was in the mood for more by the time I was descending. : rambo :

The Bajada Trail is a kind of a slog, especially after being up on the Alta. It's level, but it's not. Lots of ups and downs through the washes, and lots of loose rock to negotiate through that. :x The National Trail was a little better to walk. I noticed the junction with the Maricopa Trail not far from the San Juan TH.

Temps were cool at the start, typically hotter by the time I finished, but not too bad. Saw a few other hikers, but not many. This time of year probably keeps most people away. :DANCE:
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