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Mystery Trail Off FR609 - Sierra Ancha West, AZ
mini location map2018-11-28
6 by photographer avatarOregon_Hiker
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Mystery Trail Off FR609 - Sierra Ancha West, AZ 
Mystery Trail Off FR609 - Sierra Ancha West, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Nov 28 2018
Oregon_Hiker
Hiking1.30 Miles 215 AEG
Hiking1.30 Miles   1 Hour   12 Mns   1.08 mph
215 ft AEG
 
1st trip
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This was a short hike to check out a mystery trail and possible ruin walls I had spotted on Google Earth. The trail is visible on GE following a ridge top SSE from FR609 all the way to Turkey Creek, a distance of 1 mile. The trail turned out to be more than just a cow trail. Tree limbs and brush had been trimmed to clear the trail. The branch cuts looked fairly old but yet the trees and brush had not grown back to cover the trail and it did not appear to be heavily used by man or beast. We only followed the trail for a half mile to the location where I had spotted the possible ruin walls. The "walls" turned out to be straight edges of rock outcroppings along the top edge of a drainage. The purpose of the trail remains a mystery. It would be interesting to come back and follow it all the way to Turkey Creek near where another trail visible on GE also follows a ridge top down to the Turkey Creek drainage.


So here's one possibility on the origin of these mystery trails including the one I had found marked with faded red tape on the first day (Nov 25) of our camping trip. I once many years ago had a summer job working on a survey crew for the forest service. Our job was to survey preliminary lines for future logging roads in un-logged areas. Data gathered from these surveys was used to plan the roads and estimate costs. Our survey lines were flagged with red or yellow tape and we often had to clear paths through brush along the planned route. It's customary for temporary logging roads in mountainous terrain to be bulldozed along the top of a ridge for trucks to haul out the logs. So perhaps these mystery trails along the tops of ridges in the fairly heavily forested areas along FR609 were from initial planning surveys for either logging or forest thinning to reduce wildfire danger. In the mean time these trails provide access for hunters and curious hikers.
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