The weather report looked good for the Mazatzal range so I headed for Barnhardt trailhead. Hiked in Barnhardt Trail to Mazatzal Divide and over to Chilson Camp. From there picked up Davenport Wash Trail and continued on to South Fork of Deadman Creek. The creek had decent flow and it was very tempting to camp there but I wanted to get further along the trail. Davenport trail is difficult to follow on the other side of Deadman Creek but was able to follow the tread most of the time. I ended up finding a nice camp spot on a flat ridgeline about a mile from Deadman Creek. Fortunately, the side drainage closer to camp had some small pools to filter from.
Next day I continued looking for the trail past my camp and managed to find the tread. Unfortunately the tread only continues for about ½ mile before it disappears into the scrub brush near a dry seep. From there I explored where the trail used to be but really could not find the tread. I continued through the brush and picked up tread on the other side so the no trail section lasted only ½ mile but it was very slow going. I continued further down trail before turning around just before Red Rock Spring and heading back to camp.
Spent the next few days exploring and looking for trail on the same side of Deadman Creek. Great area to explore and camp. The last day I hiked back across Deadman Creek and up to Chilson Camp. There was one side trip near Chilson Camp to Chilson Spring that has been cleared up and redone by trail crews. They put in a new spring box with piping to provide a reliable water source for the AZT and hikers in the area. Very nice work done by the crew!
Hiking out I met Kathy near Mazatzal Divide day hiking up from the bottom and then we hiked out together. Another great time in the Mazatzal’s to check out some of the more remote parts of the range.