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Spur Cross 6L Ranch - Cave Crk Trail 4 Loop, AZ
mini location map2019-11-15
3 by photographer avatarOregon_Hiker
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Spur Cross 6L Ranch - Cave Crk Trail 4 Loop, AZ 
Spur Cross 6L Ranch - Cave Crk Trail 4 Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Nov 15 2019
Oregon_Hiker
Hiking11.30 Miles 1,220 AEG
Hiking11.30 Miles   7 Hrs   30 Mns   1.51 mph
1,220 ft AEG
 
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I needed to get back outside so headed for Spur Cross Ranch Recreation Area. My choice for the day was a lollipop loop up the creek to the 6L Ranch Location, then taking the cutoff trail up to Cave Creek Trail #4 for the return. I hadn't done this hike since March 2017. The creek was bone dry until I reached the area below the old gold mine. There were some pools of water and a trickle of water flowing at one of the creek crossings. I would suggest not drinking this water below the old mine even if you filter it. The mine used cyanide leaching in open pits to remove gold. The trail can be a little difficult to follow in this area due to past flash floods moving a lot of stuff around - just follow the horse hoof prints left by guided horse back tours to see the petroglyphs at about 4 miles from the parking lot.

The cutoff trail from the 6L Ranch location up to Cave Creek Trail #4 can also be difficult to follow and it's easy to get taken off course by animal trails that look a lot like the trail you're trying to follow. I got off track a couple of times but had a gps track to get me back on course. The temps were getting a little warm hiking up to the Trail #4 intersection but my wet Frog Toggs Chilly Pad neckie saved the day. 8) The ankle twisting rocks on the trail are always a pain, especially if you're trying to make good time. But keeping a close eye on the trail to avoid these rocks has the side benefit of discovering scattered ancient pottery sherds in several locations.
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