|Peak 5732 - Inspiration Quadrangle, AZ|
|Peak 5732 - Inspiration Quadrangle, AZ|| |
Peak 5732 - Inspiration Quadrangle, AZ
|Hiking||8.40 Miles|| 4 Hrs 42 Mns ||1.89 mph|
|2,546 ft AEG|| 15 Mns Break||20 LBS Pack|
||no linked trail guides|
|When I first planned on Peak 5732 over a year ago I came up with two options:|
1. 8-mile drive on some very nasty roads followed by a 3-mile steep up-down-up round-trip.
2. 4-mile drive, 1/2 on rough pavement and 1/2 on smooth gravel road followed by an ~8-mile round-trip along a forest road deteriorating to remnants of an old mining road.
Not being too sure whether or not option #2 crossed prohibited access mining property (it does for a very short distance), 11 weeks ago in early August I chose #1 for my first attempt. As noted in that triplog Peak 5732 Abort, that turned out to be an absolute disaster.
Fast forward to today's attempt #2:
With 50/71 the expected temperature range and an ON-road/ON-trail route, Tracey wasted no time signing-up to join me for attempt #2. She did, however, plan on wearing warm clothes due to the forecast of 15-25 mph winds gusting to 30 mph.
Just over an hour from home to the trail head in Little Pinto Canyon and we were ready to hit the trail. The clear/sunny/windy forecast was only 1/3 correct... windy but VERY LOW overcast, which made for a cold-but-sweaty hike over the course of the long ascent.
While the 'road' was pretty rough, if I didn't care about adding a bunch more Arizona-pinstripes and I could squeeze around a 6-foot boulder without going over the edge, I could have driven the 4Runner carefully 2.5 miles... but of course I wouldn't know that until we hiked it, and so we were hiking it.
We encountered a wide variety of coyote/deer/small critter tracks, we would not be rewarded by any sightings, only a few birds calling. But since we were within a few miles of where I encountered a bear while driving to my previous attempt, Tracey was made aware our newly-purchased bear spray was in a quickly accessible pocket of my pack.
The farther we hiked the more the road deteriorated, with the last 3/4-mile becoming an exercise in staying out of running water, navigating the loose rocks and avoiding the incessant cat's-claw. I didn't fight the latter as much as Tracey because my clothes don't tend to hang up on the thorny stuff like hers do.
Although on satellite-view the road appears to continue steeply down into the gorge, for all practical purposes it ended at the point where we would make an 80-degree left-turn and travel the last 500 feet off-trail to the summit. It was easier than expected due to the plethora of cow-paths and with a large cairn at the summit we knew when we arrived.
I located the original summit log plastic pill-bottle (placed by Mark Nichols in May 2004) but upon opening it I was was sorely disappointed. Although the lid was on tight it did not appear to be sealed as it was half-full of water and the single folded piece of paper was stuck inside.
Unable to write of wet paper if I could even remove it I just dumped out the water and placed the bottle back in the cairn.
Oh, I almost forgot to mention how cold it felt at the summit. Still fully overcast along with the high wind we were both experiencing the cold-sweats... the sweat from the climb now felt freezing cold. BRRRR!
Thankfully early into the return trip we received random short baths in sunlight and just over a mile the clouds cleared and we would get just enough sun for a pleasant last half of the hike.
I walked around a bit for the photos at the summit but due to the vegetation my summit video didn't provide enough value to post, so I didn't bother.
The biggest eye-opener of the hike was the sheer amount of area between the Pinto Valley and Miami mining operations which are still open to the public. If I had known this five years ago I'm sure I would have checked this peak off my list long ago. With still some lesser peaks of interest, I'm sure I be back in the area soon.