for free!
show related photosets
Campaign to Mound Mountain, AZ
mini location map2021-05-30
6 by photographer avatarjharvey33
photographer avatar
Campaign to Mound Mountain, AZ 
Campaign to Mound Mountain, AZ
Hiking avatar May 30 2021
Hiking18.14 Miles 3,720 AEG
Hiking18.14 Miles   11 Hrs   56 Mns   1.93 mph
3,720 ft AEG   2 Hrs   31 Mns Break
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
I wanted to get a hard solo hike in but avoid people so decided on Mound Mountain. An early start to be at Campaign trailhead near sunrise. The JBar road, not sure if that’s the name of the whole road to the trailhead, is manageable by even a 2wd sedan right now. Some sand/gravelly pockets like Two Bar Canyon but low and well compacted. A lot of cows on the road that had no sense of urgency on moving.

Loaded up at the Campaign trailhead, including 6 liters of water. My reptilian brain thought if I need this much water, maybe this isn’t a good idea, especially after not pushing hard in a while. But being an out-back I can bail at any time if gets too much with the heat.

Started up through the trees, passed above Reavis Mountain School, which looks like an interesting place. No idea if a hippie commune, sex cult or end of days preppers, I need to look that up, as at least one of those I am interested in.

Followed the trail along creek, which had beautiful waterflow. Trail is well marked and clear until the Reavis Gap #117 intersection. The next half mile is a cat claw over grown cluster. It was pretty clear that no one had hiked this in a bit. After that, the trail was just a hot open trail hike along the creek with several creek bed crossing with pockets of shallow murky water and sections of forest. My thanks to whoever put up the pink ribbon in places. I know it isn’t ideal for leave no trace but with overgrowth,the cairns were hidden.

Reaching Fireline trail #118 to cut up to Mound Mountain. I dropped a liter of water as no point carrying in up on an out-back. I made the rookie mistake of putting in the shade and not planning for time & sun movement. So, by the time I picked it up again, I could have made coffee with the hot water.

I headed up the miserably steep #118 that only a true masochist would enjoy. Continued up to the turn off to Circlestone. Made it to Circlestone and took a 15-minute napped before heading up Mound.

There are 2 approaches people take. The far-left side which is clear but a burned out steep wasteland or a straight shot through thick brush. I decided the left clear side. Not sure if the best choice as too much soot, collapsing dirt and large boulders that only need an ounce of pressure to tumble. After fighting to the top and then following the ridgeline to the peak, I was treated with a….meh view. It reminded me of the disappointing view on the top of Weaver’s Needle. But the point was to succeed at climbing the highest point in the Superstitions and I was really happy about that. As it was 97 degrees at the top, I decided to forgo hanging out and got moving. I headed down the front side because if felt too sketchy going down the way I came up.

An uneventful hike out until about 2 miles from the end, I almost stepped on an Arizona Black rattlesnake. This was my 6th rattlesnake of the day but the only one that was within striking distances. I was a little trail zoned out and thinking about what food I was going get when I got back to civilization. He was curled in a flat spiral, no warning. The heel of my boot was about to clip him when I saw him, and I had enough leverage to push off and hop over him. He understandably was quite pissed, just chilli’ mind his own business and some idiot almost stepped on him.

A good head clearing hike that is not the most scenic trail but not seeing anyone all day, it was a good choice. There is flowing water for the first 2 miles and then pockets off and on for another 2 miles. Obviously plan accordingly. Trail is getting out of season but hikers that don’t mind the heat and want solitude, this a good option. Especially if you break it by backpacking.
4 archives
HAZ Member
1 Photoset


end of page marker