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Barks Lower Canyon Loop
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Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking Nov 12 2008
Hiking4.00 Miles 900 AEG
Hiking4.00 Miles   6 Hrs      0.67 mph
900 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked descriptions
Partners none no partners
If you read about the guy who was headed for Bluff Springs Mountain Summit (azpride) you will see he refers to my map and questions about Lower Barks Canyon. My handle is OhOh7. Anyway he directed us up over one more hill before we went down to the start of Lower Barks Canyon. Someone-maybe azpride-put a nice carin there for us so we headed SW down the canyon. True it is very easy to see but I am not the brightest hiker in the forest so the carin was very helpful!

Of course we had gone up cardiac hill and followed the Bluff Springs trail to the Barks Lower Canyon Loop. Now ladies and gentlemen, remember I am just about 74 and I am basically a trail hiker. This ain't no trail hike!! It is boulder city for most of the way. There are a few pools and a few flat places but it is classified as a 4 and I would double that for me.!!!

It is written up as 4 hour jaunt-took me 6. This canyon route is an ankle turner is I ever saw one. Fortunately I went slow enough that I did not even fall once! If you have not hiked the trails in the area do not try this one first-get more off trail experience.. Someone said it is like the Cave trail. Well, I think it is much more difficult that the Cave Trail and I have been both ways on that one. Jumping from boulder to boulder and doing a bit of bushwhacking leads you down the canyon. You know it will end at the Dutchman trail—which it did. I was so tired I debated crawling the remainder of the Dutchman to the parking lot—BUT, I made it with only slight traces of blood from cat claw and jutting rocks. Several places I had to incorporate my famous butt slide but was able to negotiate most of the canyon. Toward the bottom I found on the NW side a semblance of a trail so was able to follow it to the Dutchman. A bit easier than the boulder hopping which I had had enough of!

On the positive side, wow, the rock formations and long wall slides are so fantastic. The frequent pools add great scenery. Dan brought his grand daughter, about 11 years old. Of course I was envious the entire way as she jumped and scrambled and when we hit the Dutchman Trail she even ran all the way to the top!! I shall never be young again, damn it! She even ran up a few of the rock slopes.

If you have off trail experience and boulder hopping does not other you, this is a fantastic route as the scenery is even different from other Supes trails. Being in a canyon there is lots of growth of bushes and trees. I took a few photos I will post but they really do not show the astounding grandeur of the canyon. This is one of the few routes in the Western Supes that has lots of foilage. We even saw 2 rock climbers on a NW face that looked dangerous to us. They must know what they were doing. Joe's GPS route is quite accurate. Total was just over 4 miles for me on my GPS. This is not an easy one but I feel good now that I have done it!!
Life is what is happening while you are making other plans.

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