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mini location map2021-02-13
17 by photographer avatarDarthStiller
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Dome MountainPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 13 2021
Hiking7.01 Miles 1,701 AEG
Hiking7.01 Miles   5 Hrs   2 Mns   1.59 mph
1,701 ft AEG      38 Mns Break
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
@adilling assured me that there was a full, actual trail all the way to the top of this mountain. I checked the descriptions and noticed that no one has done a full one yet for this hike, and that there was Dome Mountain, and Dome Mountain Loop. The hike just to the summit was only 6 miles, and the loop was closer to 10. The loop had a bushwhack, but that looked like it's downhill to the road. I decided to try the loop.

I followed the dirt road in until its endpoint. a little before that, I saw a cairn and a trail. RS has a track at that point that's the Three Lesser Peaks. I headed on following the track I downloaded. At the end of the road, the track headed to the left (west) and into a ravine. The trail seemed faint, but it looked like something was there. That soon faded into nothing. I kept expecting to find a trail or some of the infamous spray paint markings. As I got higher, the terrain only got steeper and the footing looser. If it wasn't scree, it was soil and vegetation. I could see I was just below the saddle between the two peaks. I was completely in the mood to bail a few times, but being so close to the top is the only thing that kept me going. Near the saddle, I could hear voices of hikers across the ravine, but couldn't spot them.

after the saddle, there is a almost a trail. It's very faint, more of a route, but very well cairned. Also very rocky. As I got closer to the top, I could hear the hikers again, but still couldn't see them. I got to the summit just after they did. It was three ladies. They seemed surprised that anyone else was out that far, and wanted to know which way I took to the top. It turns out they took the actual trail to the top, which is the way Andy took 2 weeks ago. He wasn't lying after all. His route is now the official route for this hike, which is an actual full trail, and not the bushwhack monstrosity that I took.

After talking for a few minutes to the ladies at the summit, I headed down the proper route, which was way more enjoyable than the way I took up. I was so relieved to not have to renegotiate the steep slopes and loose scree on the way down. I was never happier to see spray paint before along the trail. I had hoped to bag the other peak up there, which didn't look like much of a bushwhack, but it took to much time going up the way I did.

the skies were cloudy all morning, not giving great lighting for any decent pics. It felt noticeably colder up top than down below. The scenery on the trail portion of my hike was also much nicer than bushwhack portion. Got less mileage, but worked harder for it.
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