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Massacre Falls
210 Photosets

2021-12-31  
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2019-03-17  
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mini location map2020-09-17
10 by photographer avatarAZLumberjack
photographer avatar
 
Massacre FallsPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 17 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking3.86 Miles 715 AEG
Hiking3.86 Miles   2 Hrs   8 Mns   1.81 mph
715 ft AEG
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I left home early this morning with the intent of hiking parts of the Massacre Grounds to see what damage the Superstition Fire had done to the area. The Barricades are still blocking access to First Water Road with a sign that warns against road usage, so I parked my pickup outside the road closure and headed down the road, on foot.

I walked to the Crosscut Trailhead, empty of vehicles, and headed up the Massacre Trail where I was scolded by a hawk who didn't appreciate my presence. Everything along both sides of the trail is burnt to a crisp. With the lack of brush, the desert looks surreal now that everything is visible. At one point, as I was looking down into the dry wash, I thought I was looking at a man-made stone wall. I've been on this trail a hundred times and never noticed a wall down there, so I had to get closer to check it out. Nope, it ain't a wall, only a rocky hump close to the wash (see the attached photos), but it sure had me going for a while though. Also visible is prospects that I had never seen before and a scattering of tin cans where they had lay covered by grass and brush. Before long, I came across a melted plastic water bottle.... well, that explains why I haven't seen any of them lying around (a small benefit of the fire?).

I made a loop that took me to the old Massacre Trailhead and returned, off trail, through the burnt area. Now that I don't have to avoid the Cholla and Catclaw, the walking was much easier than it had been in the past. I kept looking for Rattlers thinking they might look like a diamondback shish-k-bob, but with their ambush cover burnt, they're either dead or taking an early hibernation. I saw a couple of Rabbits, several small birds and a few lizards, it's amazing how well they stand out now that their protective cover has been destroyed. Now I know why that Hawk was scolding me, he had the best hunting grounds ever.

On my return, I was making the last turn on First Water Road as I noticed a pickup parked at the road closure, sure enough, it was the Forest Service. We talked as I was removing my gear and stowing it in my truck, when he mentioned that I shouldn't be hiking in there. Well, that changed the tone of the conversation. I quickly realized that I was arguing a point that I wasn't going to win and perhaps, I was even due a violation for my morning's trek, so I made my point and left.
_____________________
On every trip into the Superstitions, I find another Gold Mine. Today the mine was filled with Memories. I can not wait for the next trip.
HAZ Member
AZLumberjack's
379 Photosets

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