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Black Top Mesa Loop, AZ
mini location map2021-01-29
5 by photographer avatarLJW
photographer avatar
 
Black Top Mesa Loop, AZ 
Black Top Mesa Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 29 2021
LJW
Hiking28.56 Miles 4,739 AEG
Hiking28.56 Miles   9 Hrs   23 Mns   3.22 mph
4,739 ft AEG      30 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
Probably a poor name for the route as Black Top Mesa was only a small part of the hike, but it was the only summit I visited, and I can’t think of better. Didn’t plan on doing this whole loop, but I couldn’t help myself. Most every trail was new to me, and I had never been to Peralta TH. Don’t head into the Superstitions very often, and it had been a year. My how much there is to see.

Peralta 45 minutes before sunrise. 90% chance of rain, expected low traffic and didn’t see anyone all day. Peralta Trail is lush south of Fremont Saddle and burned out to the north. It’s in great shape, however.

Went all the way to Dutchman and then to Upper Black Top Mesa Pass. From there I scrambled up the ridge from the south. Light bushwacking, steeper higher up, was up in no time. Good panorama with the distant Mazatzals in their winter coat.

Bull Pass into Marsh Valley to the 2nd of 3 sections of Dutchman. Sun came out for a while as I passed Black Mountain and Charlebois. Didn’t have a look around but took a break under the trees around Oak Spring before getting going again.

Red Tanks was easily my favorite trail of the day. Was going to circle back via Whiskey Canyon but found myself unable to stop. It is pretty badly burned in places, especially Red Tanks Canyon. Diverse views along its course. Trap Canyon to Red Tanks Divide was probably my favorite stretch. Down the dry, yellow La Barge Canyon, through the lush and wet Upper La Barge Box, over the rolling, grassy hills of Red Tanks Canyon.

Down to Coffee Flat Trail and had my last break. Randolph Canyon from the 107 junction and through Coffee Flat was the highlight stretch. Once into Barkley Basin, started to feel the miles. Between fatigue, the darkening clouds, and the recently torched saguaro forest, just focused on being done. Finished just as the rain was pushing through.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Fraser Canyon Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Music Canyon Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Peralta Canyon Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Red Tanks Canyon Light flow Light flow

dry Trap Canyon Dry Dry

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Upper LaBarge Box Canyon Medium flow Medium flow
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