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Bonanza Bill Trail #23
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2021-08-02  
2021-04-09  
2020-07-18  
2015-07-18  
mini location map2020-07-18
8 by photographer avatarFOTG
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Bonanza Bill Trail #23Alpine, AZ
Alpine, AZ
Hiking5.00 Miles 500 AEG
Hiking5.00 Miles
500 ft AEG
 
Linked   none no linked trail guides
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I made a detour down to the lower Blue and headed over towards Pueblo Park to check out a lead on some ruins on our third day in the Blue Range. I found the ruins, but the approach looked too rough for the pups, so I decided to leave them for another day.

On my way back I decided to stop at the Bonanza Bill Trail to let the dogs stretch their legs and stretch their legs they did. I was reading through the register when we got there to see if anyone noted any fire damage on the trail. I had heard from a Hannigan employee that there was a fire near the trailhead last year. I did not see any mention of fire damage, but did come across a couple of wolf sightings and then comments left behind by someone with the wolf project. While I was reading the comments Blanco took off, but not like squirrel take off, but like something big. Dot followed right behind him as he ran down the trail. Blanco stopped with a stern yell, but Dot peeled off into the woods and I heard a lot of crashing. I assumed it was just elk, but then Dot let out a few barks from the trail before heading back and I could still hear a lot of branches breaking.

I immediately leashed Dot and Blanco and walked down the trail to check it out. The first thing I saw was two cubs climbing high into a tree. I had a moment of panic because I had no idea where the mom was. Then I noticed much lower on the tree a big bear just hugging it and hanging out. I did not want to stress the mom out too much so I gave her a wide berth and her and the cubs down climbed pretty quickly and then just kind of meandered away like nothing had happened.

I decided with reported wolf sightings and the nice bear sighting that we should just camp near the trailhead and hike the nice trail again in the morning. The morning hike just involved some elk and was a much more normal hike. A pleasant hike too. This trail is great for a low committing stroll in the pines.

Note:

I have heard howling twice now while camped in this area. Once at the trailhead and once in the backcountry near Hinkle Spring. I have always just dismissed it as coyotes, but I am starting to wonder with the wolf project entries in the register, if maybe I did hear the elusive howl of the Mexican Grey Wolf?
 Fauna
 Fauna [ checklist ]
[ checklist ]  Black Bear
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