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Peralta to Fremont Saddle
363 Photosets

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mini location map2020-06-27
33 by photographer avataradilling
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Peralta to Fremont SaddlePhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jun 27 2020
adilling
Hiking4.90 Miles 1,440 AEG
Hiking4.90 Miles
1,440 ft AEG
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I wanted to head out to the Peralta Trail to survey the damages from the Sawtooth Fire. When I arrived at the trailhead I could smell the smoke already. Hiking up I did not see any indication of fire damage until I made it up past slickrock area. Once you hit that section, you can see the fire path coming from the north part of the Cave Trail and along the Peralta Trail. The closer I got to the Fremont Saddle, the more damage I could see. It appears to have touched the very top of Peralta Canyon.

When I finally made it to the saddle, I could see the fire did spread right across the entire Fremont Saddle area. When I came up to the first visit of the needle, it was very depressing. The fire really roasted the Peralta Trail north of the saddle. It also spread up the cliff area to the west. I made my way over to the Lone Pine. I had a friend that had hike up there a few days earlier and reported that the tree survived. The entire path from the saddle to the Cave Trail was burnt bad. Most of the Cave Trail that goes to the Lone Pine was also burnt as well.

I made it to the tree and saw that the fire burnt right up to the tree. Literally a few feet away. I have heard some people say the firefighters stopped it. It was either that or just plain dumb luck. From the viewpoint at the Lone Pine, you could see the full damage to the upper Peralta Trail, the needle and the parts of the Terrapin Trail visible from there. It looks pretty bad. The fire crawled up the cliffs along the Peralta Trail. The fire fighters dropped a bunch of slurry along the ridgelines there and also at the base of the needle. From this view it was clear that Bluff Mountain sustained some fire damage as well. The acrid smell of the area was nauseating for sure.

There were quite a few people up there considering how early I started - 530am. It looks like there was a group of forest service guys ready to do something as well. Lots of their trucks at the trailhead.

I made my way back down and was happy that the lower part of the trail survived, but seeing all of that beautiful desert all burnt up was very depressing. Nature will heal itself, but its hard to see a silver lining with this fire right now.
_____________________
"Hiking is just walking where it’s okay to pee." –Demetri Martin

instagram: @andydilling
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236 Photosets

  2020-08-05
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  2020-06-27
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  2020-04-18
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  2020-04-09
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