username
X
password
register help
GuidesRoutes
 
Photosets
 
 Comments
triplogs   photosets   labels comments more
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 ... 24  Next
477 triplogs

Nov 12 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Silly Mountain Trail SystemPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 12 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking
Hiking
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Well, I had good intentions of heading over to Silly Mountain this morning but I was interrupted by an amAZing sunrise taking place right outside my kitchen window. I was in the process of fixing a breakfast snack but had to drop everything, grab my camera and tripod and get outside quick.

I took a series of shots as the colors and lights shifted from bright to even brighter. The sunrises don't last very long around here so I had to jump around from one position to another before it was all gone, and after a couple of minutes the display was fading fast.

When it was all over, I finished my breakfast snack and, by now, it would be all crowded over at Silly Mountain so, instead, I took a couple of laps around the park. Maybe I'll make it over to Silly Mtn tomorrow.

Disclaimer: The scenery is real. The clouds are real. The colors are real but enhanced to provide visual appeal.
:?
_____________________
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.
1 archive
Nov 05 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Peralta to Fremont SaddlePhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 05 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking4.90 Miles 1,440 AEG
Hiking4.90 Miles   3 Hrs   30 Mns   1.40 mph
1,440 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I've been thinking about the Peralta hike for some time now, I wanted to go and see for myself, the damage done by the fires. I hit the trail by 07:00 on a typical cloudless day with a light breeze blowing from the upper ridges and It felt good to get out on the Peralta again, since it's been a year since my last time here.

Only a few cars in the parking lot so I had the trails all to myself.... almost. I soon got passed by a young couple heading up to the saddle and out to Pinon Point. Before long, the breeze quit and the sun beat down so it didn't take long to work up a sweat. My replacement knees haven't been doing such a great job lately, so I might have to have a talk with my therapist to see if it's just the summers high temps or something else.

The trail was in great shape and lots of green along the way was nice, since I've lately been doing so much hiking in burn areas. I didn't come across any signs of the fire until I hit the upper stretches of the trail, then it increased until I reached the saddle and it became real. Such a shame that the normal beauty of the canyon before me was now a tangled mess of burnt, leafless shrubs and burnt cacti. Thinking with the positive side of my brain, sure, it's going to come back, but the negative side says, not in my lifetime. The Pinon Pine tree out on the point survived the blazes, but only thanks to some firefighters who went out there to protect the iconic tree. My hat's off to all of those firefighters who spent so many days out there fighting the fires and protecting what remains.

My trip from trailhead to saddle was two hours, pretty bad time for someone who used to get there in an hour, but the sweat factor and another birthday all figure in. After a short break, I made it back down in an hour and a half.
Geology
Geology
HooDoo
Named place
Named place
Weavers Needle
_____________________
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.
Nov 03 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Superstition Mtn Burn Area, AZ 
Superstition Mtn Burn Area, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Nov 03 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking2.00 Miles 377 AEG
Hiking2.00 Miles   1 Hour   30 Mns   1.33 mph
377 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
My vote was submitted last week, so while everyone's standing in a voting line, I'm going hiking. I drove out on First Water Road to the horse trailer parking lot and headed into the burn areas across the road. Many times I've wandered around this area when the plants were healthy and in full bloom, so it's pretty traumatic to wander the same areas, now that everything's burnt.

So many Giant Saguaro have been distressed by the long draught and don't have the moisture content inside to fight off the heat of the fire so there's a lot that won't last much longer. The low growing Hedgehog cactus didn't have a chance and are barely recognizable among the soot and ashes.

It was a nice shirt sleeve and shorts morning with only a light breeze blowing but I could see that rain was in the sky further to the south. As I kept wandering the hills and washes, the clouds kept moving my way and the air felt like it might rain, even though none was predicted. Before long, I thought it prudent to start heading back to the parking lot and, sure enough, there was light drops falling on my dusty truck. As I drove home, I had to turn on the wipers to keep the windshield clear, but it was short lived and most likely only served to irritate anyone waiting in a voting line somewhere.
_____________________
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.
Oct 22 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
First Water Basin, AZ 
First Water Basin, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Oct 22 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking3.22 Miles 625 AEG
Hiking3.22 Miles   1 Hour   50 Mns   1.81 mph
625 ft AEG      3 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
The morning temps are dropping so it's becoming a bit more comfortable to get out hiking again So this morning I hiked some more of the Superstition Mountain's burn area.

I drove out First Water Road to the horse trailer parking lot and followed a favorite trail through a narrow canyon down to First Water Creek. The first part of my hike was through some un-burnt desert, but once at the dry creek in the basin, almost everything was torched. Such a shame to see such devastation in this normally beautiful part of the Superstitions.

Along my trails, I did find a deep pool of water that didn't look like anything I wanted to taste. I don't think it was spring fed because there was no water flowing from the pool and the fly's were buzzing but none were landing by the water.

I had a chilly start to my hike, even wearing a long sleeve shirt, but once the sun came out, it didn't take me long to stuff that shirt in the backpack. Only met a few hikers on the trails this morning.
_____________________
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.
2 archives
Oct 13 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Garden Valley LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 13 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking3.97 Miles 896 AEG
Hiking3.97 Miles   2 Hrs   12 Mns   1.80 mph
896 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Drove out to a burnt-out First Water Trailhead before sunrise and headed for Garden Valley. I put on my Weed Gators as they help keep my shoes and sox clean from all the soot covered brush. The trailhead area is almost completely burnt, except for the outhouses and the signs and as you head down the trail, it's completely burnt on both sides. Once across the second dry wash (ain't they all) on Second Water Trail, heading up the hill to the Garden, the trail is untouched by the fire and it's a relief to see it. Then, as soon as you reach the top of the hill, entering the Garden, once again, everything's burnt.

The brush in Garden Valley is spaced such the fire never gained enough strength to burn everything completely so a lot of the brush is still standing but almost leafless. I left the trail and headed straight for the saddle where you have a good overlook view of the First Water Basin with the old tin corral and windmill on the far side of First Water Creek. From this vantage point you can see where the Slurry Tankers had dumped some of the red fire retardant to protect the old corral area. The Garden Valley Arch is still intact so thanks to the fire crews for protecting it.

From the saddle overlook, I headed down the steep drop into the basin and across the basin to the corral and windmill. There's a lot of the red fire retardant all over the rocks and brush, but it's dried and doesn't stick to clothing. Glad they were able to save the corral area from the fire, then it's up the old rutted road and back to the trailhead.

The weed gators are a lifesaver for my boots and sox and will be a part of my hiking gear whenever I head into the burn areas. At this time, it's not a good idea to bring a dog along as it would soon be soot covered. There are some horse riders out but they too are sure to need a good bathing when they get back home. Need some rain.... BAD.
_____________________
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.
Oct 07 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Massacre FallsPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 07 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking2.20 Miles 484 AEG
Hiking2.20 Miles   2 Hrs      1.10 mph
484 ft AEG
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
The Forest Service has finally opened Superstition Mountain for hiking and they have removed the barricades from the entrance to First Water Road. Of course, the fire's been out for going on three weeks now.

So for the first time in, what seems like forever, I was able to go out and tour some of my favorite hiking trails through a burnt out desert. It's a very saddening thing to walk among the soot covered cacti, sticks and twigs poking up through the ashes along trails that were once covered with grass, brush and leaves. There's no real danger of being surprised by a hidden Rattle Snake though, cause there's no place for em to hide.... if there's any still alive.

The photos show a leafless tree that could be late autumn in the north country, but now is a stark skeleton in the desert foothills. Another photo shows several Saguaro that have been burnt around the base, I can only hope they will survive and live on. A third photo shows where the burn area comes up against the un-burnt off in the distance, this line is the First Water Road, where the fire crews made their stand against the encroaching fire. The final photo shows the Superstition Mountain sign at the First Water Trailhead. Everything around the trailhead is burnt to a crisp, except for this sign.

If you should plan on taking a hike through the burn, be sure to wear dark clothes as it's almost impossible to get through some of the areas without rubbing against the soot covered brush, and it doesn't readily brush off your clothes and shoes.


:)
_____________________
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.
Sep 24 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Needle Vista Loop, AZ 
Needle Vista Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Sep 24 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking3.31 Miles 186 AEG
Hiking3.31 Miles   1 Hour   30 Mns   2.23 mph
186 ft AEG      1 Min Break
 
no photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Needle Vista is a nice paved parking area along the Apache Trail offering a good view of Weavers Needle in the distance.

A not very visible trail begins in the wash at the end of the concrete walk. Follow the wash/trail for a bit more than a mile until you arrive at the large horse-trailer parking lot beside First Water Road. From the Northeast corner of the lot, take the Hackberry Spring Trail, continue on for about a mile until the trail splits. Take the branch to the left and follow it back to the parking lot.
_____________________
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.
1 archive
Sep 17 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
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.
Sep 10 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Praying Hands - Crosscut THPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 10 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking2.60 Miles 313 AEG
Hiking2.60 Miles   1 Hour   25 Mns   1.84 mph
313 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I've been making regular trips to First Water Road to see if I can get in to see what damage the fire has done, but the road is still blocked. So I parked along the Apache Trail and went for a walk.

I headed for the trail that goes from a small parking area along the FW Road up to the Fins. This trail runs north & South and was a boundary that the firefighters used to draw their line in the desert. One side of the trail is just like it always has been, the other side, towards the Massacre Grounds, is toast.

The fire must have been very hot around there because the Saguaro are burnt all the way to the tops. All brush and grass is gone although some sticks still exist without leaves. I still want to get further back into the Massacre Grounds to check that area out. I still can't imagine how that fire made the leap from the Massacre Grounds all the way to Black Mesa and Garden Valley, unless it had some help. :o
_____________________
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.
Aug 26 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Siphon Draw Trail #53Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 26 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking3.90 Miles 1,070 AEG
Hiking3.90 Miles
1,070 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
The Superstition Fire has been steadily working its way along the Ridgeline towards the Western end of the Mountain. This morning I noticed the columns of smoke coming from the peaks at the end of the range. I drove out to First Water Road and parked in an area where I had good views of the smoky mess that we know as Superstition Mountain.

The Northern slopes of the mountain are on fire from above Hieroglyphic Canyon to the western cliffs. This includes the entire Massacre Grounds and even Siphon Draw. The fire has spread beyond the Wilderness fenceline and is burning along the Massacre Grounds trail.

We (there was another photographer here) were approached by a Tonto Forest official telling us that we were soon going to be evicted from our spot once the Slurry Bombers and the Fire Trucks arrived (I don't think they ever showed up though). I waited for another hour and only saw two helicopters from the local TV news stations. So I left as the fire crews were coming to subdue the fires manually.

As near as I can recall, the fire started during a lightning storm on the night of Aug 18th but I didn't see anything burning until the morning of the 20th, then I followed its progress daily. The Forest Service was aware of the fire but for some reason decided to only monitor the fire and not assign crews to extinguish it.... until today. Now they have ground personnel on site but I still haven't seen any aerial activity. :? ](*,)
_____________________
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.
Jun 17 2020
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Fish Creek HillPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jun 17 2020
AZLumberjack
Hiking2.20 Miles 100 AEG
Hiking2.20 Miles
100 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
For the last several days I've been watching the smoke billowing out of the Bush Fire so this morning I took a trip out the Apache Trail (State Hwy 88) to see what I could see. There's a pull-over around mile 206 that offers a nice distant view of Four Peaks so I pulled over for some photos of the smoky mountains.

I was aware that the fire was moving both north and south but it's also traveling east and west as well. From my vantage point, it looked as though the smoke might be almost to the Horse Mesa Dam on the east and close to Saguaro Lake on the west. Four Peaks is completely on fire and if the wind blows right, the mountain is lost in the smoke.

As long as I was out and around (not doing much during this darn quarantine), I decided to continue on to Fish Creek Hill for a look-see, first time there since the last Monsoon season. There was very little traffic at 07:30 so I had the road all to myself and was able to cruise with the windows down and get an occasional whiff of smoke in the air.

There's a no-nonsense barricade across the road at the scenic rest stop at the top of the hill and no one else around. I parked my truck, grabbed my camera and headed down the hill. There are no signs of vehicular traffic on the road, just a couple of bicycle tire marks and some shoe prints but lots of plastic bottles and trash. The old road has some serious washouts and lots of loose rocks and sand where the road surface once was, it was almost like walking in a sandy washout.

I was half a mile down the road when I discovered that my water bottle was still in the truck so I didn't want to go any further as it was quickly warming up. I can only visualize the amount of water rushing down the road during that Monsoon, the guard rails are still along the high sides of the road and must have kept the water from destroying the outside edges.

I'll have to do this again if the weather gives me a break and I remember to bring my water along. I want to see the actual rock closures further down.
_____________________
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.
Dec 23 2019
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Silly Mountain Trail SystemPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 23 2019
AZLumberjack
Hiking2.40 Miles 594 AEG
Hiking2.40 Miles   1 Hour   33 Mns   1.55 mph
594 ft AEG
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I haven't hiked the near-by Silly Mountain for quite a while so this morning I headed over there for a morning's workout hike. The weather was very overcast but a mild 55 degrees with a light breeze. I started before 0700 hoping to get a shot of a sunrise, but with all the clouds, that didn't happen. The parking lot only had two cars when I started so I had the trails all to myself.

I was very surprised to see the number of Saguaro that are extremely distressed and certainly won't survive much longer, I can only attribute it to the hot summers and lack of rain on a soil that doesn't hold the water. The views of Superstition Mountain are always good from the backside of the hike and everything looks fairly green yet, maybe we'll get a wet winter this year. By the time I returned to the parking lot, there was about 25 cars and hikers were still arriving, this place really packs em in.
_____________________
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.
Dec 03 2019
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Hackberry Spring LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 03 2019
AZLumberjack
Hiking3.91 Miles 678 AEG
Hiking3.91 Miles   2 Hrs   48 Mns   1.40 mph
678 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Although First Water Road has been graded since the Monsoon storm, it's still pretty rough and slow going but the washouts have been filled. I parked at the horse trailer lot as the sun was still beyond the horizon but had enough light and color to light things up and outline Weavers Needle off in the distance.

I walked to the old road leading down to the tin-covered corral to start my hike only to find that the big storm had washed out the road making it kinda tricky in spots. The old rusty water tank by the corral has been attacked by spray-can wielding graffiti artists, that crap is completely out of place down here.

First Water creek is running kinda high, thanks to another inch of rain on Friday so I got my shoes wet for the first time as I crossed to continue on to the trail that leads up to Garden Valley via Hackberry Butte. The trail was wet in places and has minor washouts but it's still easy to find. Once up at the saddle, where the trails split, I opted not to go on up to Garden Valley cause I had heard stories about ankle deep mud and instead, went on towards Hackberry Spring.

The trail system that follows the creek, is washed out in places and getting close to the creek several feet below. The horses are making a wide swing around some of the washed out areas. Got my feet wet again crossing into the large camping area by the spring but just gotta pay attention to the rocks that move when you step on em. The narrow, boulder-strewn Gorge has changed a lot thanks to high water levels following the storm which moved a lot of boulders and left debris high in the trees.

As I was working my way through the boulders, I reached a dead-end but was presented with a small, but scenic, waterfall that was flowing nicely but was too deep to continue on so I had to re-trace my tracks and find another way around. Got my feet wet again crossing the bedrock sections but still worth the wet feet to hear the water rushing through the rocks.

I followed the small, narrow almost-slot canyon that leads back to the parking lot but had to get through the area of deep pools by carefully walking the steep sides where one slip could put me into the knee-deep cold pools. Then it was just a matter of following the canyon to the horse trails and back to the parking lot. It was during this part of my hike that I ran into my first pair of hikers.... can't beat that for a good day.
:)
Meteorology
Meteorology
Autumn - Color Foliage
_____________________
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.
Oct 04 2019
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Peralta to Fremont SaddlePhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 04 2019
AZLumberjack
Hiking4.90 Miles 1,440 AEG
Hiking4.90 Miles   4 Hrs      1.23 mph
1,440 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Wow! Talk about out of shape, this is one of my all-time favorite hiking trails in the Superstitions but this past hot summer put a big damper on my hiking and it showed.

I arrived at the Peralta Trailhead before 06:00 and I was the only one in the parking lot so in the dim early light, I grabbed my gear, signed the log book and hit the trail at six sharp. Ya should have heard the Coyote's singing, they were howling from all over the place, must have been their welcome back Jack song.... :D

The first half mile was in the twilight but still didn't need a flashlight. By the half way point, the sun was breaking over the ridges above me and lighting up the Hoodoos on the western slopes of the canyon.... who says there's no gold in the Superstitions? Those Hoodoos looked like pure, solid gold in those first rays of sunlight, and that's why I try to get an early start on this trail. At the start of my hike, there was a lot of scattered clouds but the sun was taking care of that in short order and I was hitting the most exposed part of the trail.

The steady pounding from the trail began taking a toll on my knees and I had to stop a couple of times to give em a break but that's just a good excuse to take some photos of the way the sun plays on the desert and highlights the Saguaro. I hit Fremont Saddle after an hour and a half on the trail and found a shaded spot with good views to rest the tired knees, take in some electrolytes, have a couple of trail bars & oranges for snack time.

After a nice quiet half hour, I hit the trail back down and..... yup, here they come, ya could hear em all the way down the trail.... that's another reason to hit the trails early.... solitude. Had to take a couple more breaks on the way down as the sun was now approaching the ten o'clock hour and gotta keep hydrated. Where the heck are those clouds that looked so inviting on the way up? Now that the weather's cooling off, I'll have to get onto this trail more often to see if I can toughen up those high buck knees.
:D
Meteorology
Meteorology
Sunburst

dry Peralta Creek at #102 Crossing Dry Dry
Found some damp sand in places but no puddles.

dry Peralta Spring Dry Dry
Not a drop.....
_____________________
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.
Sep 25 2019
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
First Water Road, AZ 
First Water Road, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Sep 25 2019
AZLumberjack
Hiking
Hiking
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I drove out to First Water Road for an early morning hike to check out some of my favorite hiking trails, but I wasn't expecting to see the damage that Monday's Monsoon rains did to the Road. This is a view of the first crossing along the road, a bit under a mile from the Trail (SR88) turnoff.

A lot of the trails didn't fare much better, I walked the Crosscut Trail for a couple of miles and it's going to be slow going until the trails get repaired.

The road should be listed as "high clearance" until the Forest Service does its next scheduled (annual) road maintenance.
Meteorology
Meteorology
Sunrise
_____________________
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.
Aug 13 2019
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Spearfish Canyon Spearfish SD, SD 
Spearfish Canyon Spearfish SD, SD
 
Scenic Drive avatar Aug 13 2019
AZLumberjack
Scenic Drive17.00 Miles
Scenic Drive17.00 Miles
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
On our return trip from Minnesota we came through South Dakota to visit some friends living in the Lead/Deadwood area and spent some time touring the scenic Spearfish Canyon. The Black Hills area has received lots of rain this year so the creek that flows through the canyon had plenty of water to show off the rapids and numerous falls along its course. The highlight of the trip was pulling off the road and viewing the Bridal Veil Falls, really cool as the water tumbled and splashed down the 60 ft course of rocks.

There were several smaller falls along the route, and I had to stop and check them all out as they appeared. Lots of deer, a mixture of White-Tail and Mule deer greeted us as we rounded the numerous sharp corners, but they were bashful and wouldn't pose for a photo.

The road through the canyon is a wide two-lane, blacktop road with lots of pull-off areas for hiking or photo ops and I can only imagine how crowded this place is during the summer tourist season, we were fortunate enough to have the road almost all to ourselves. It's a super scenic yet short drive so if you should find yourself in the area, it's a must-see adventure.
:)
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial
Lots of colorful wildflowers dotted the landscape.
_____________________
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.
Jul 31 2019
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Lebanon Hills Regional ParkMetro, MN
Metro, MN
Hiking avatar Jul 31 2019
AZLumberjack
Hiking2.50 Miles 308 AEG
Hiking2.50 Miles   1 Hour   30 Mns   1.67 mph
308 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Water, water every and all the boards did shrink.... well, you know the rest. We took some time off to get away from the triple digit Arizona temps and spend some time with family and friends in Minnesota & Wisconsin, but we've been inundated with rain a couple of times a week. When the sun's out, it's serious beautiful weather and, given the presence of the Minnesota state bird (Mosquitoe), it's been a treat to get out and enjoy the out-of-doors again.

This morning I ventured out to the local Lebanon Hills Regional Park for a walk around the lakes. Everything is so green here from all the rain that a whole squad of lawnmowers were running up and down the main trails to keep them free of the encroaching weeds. The small lakes are thick with Lily Pads and weeds but there was two guys in a canoe beating the water to a froth in search of Panfish or Bass hiding below.

I started my walk early while the temps were still in the mid 60's, dew points in the 80's and the bugs were still in hiding but it was a cloudless sky and the sun would soon be warming the woods and bringing em out. I was surprised by how few other hikers were out, but as I was finishing my walk, the parking lot was filling up.

Yeah it's nice to experience the low temps again but, I surely miss Arizona.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial
All types of colorful wildflowers are blooming everywhere, it's like a late season "superbloom" all over again.
_____________________
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.
May 07 2019
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Hackberry Spring LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar May 07 2019
AZLumberjack
Hiking3.70 Miles 710 AEG
Hiking3.70 Miles   2 Hrs   17 Mns   1.62 mph
710 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
With most of the Snowbirds gone or leaving, I planned on a trip through the Hackberry Spring area. The morning's weather was predicting rain and possibly storms for the Valley and that usually means clouds, even dramatic clouds, and after looking at solid blue Arizona sky's for the last several days, I was hoping for change.

I parked at the Horse Lot and headed down the old road to the corral as the clouds were already moving in and the sunlit Saguaro could now stand out against the background of ominous dark clouds. First Water Creek still has a small amount of water flowing, it's always such a treat to listen to the sounds of water trickling through the rocks when you're in the middle of the Sonoran Desert. There was a welcome chill to the morning air as I picked up the trail on the other side of the creek and soon I was walking between flowering Staghorn Cholla, Hedgehog, Prickly Pear and even the Giant Saguaro had its white blooms.

The trail splits with one branch going to Garden Valley but I stayed on the branch that would take me down to First Water Creek again where I can follow the trails through the densely shaded areas where the overnight campers usually make camp. The creek was dry down here so the only sounds were from the birds that call this area home. Hackberry Spring still flows from the length of steel pipe, little more than dripping, but enough to keep the ground moist and the lichen green.

Heading into the narrow gorge area, the clouds are still dark as I boulder-hop through the canyon, and then, yup.... drips of rain. Fortunately it didn't amount to much so I kept hiking up the unnamed wash that would lead me back to the parking lot.
:)
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
The Brittlebush are done now but the Saguaro will soon be in full bloom. The Creosote bushes are blooming as are the Staghorn, Hedgehog and Prickly Pear Cactus.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Hackberry Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
A steady, but small stream of water flowing from the end of the pipe.
_____________________
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.
May 02 2019
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Crosscut Trail - Superstition Mountain, AZ 
Crosscut Trail - Superstition Mountain, AZ
 
Hiking avatar May 02 2019
AZLumberjack
Hiking2.38 Miles 302 AEG
Hiking2.38 Miles   1 Hour   21 Mns   1.76 mph
302 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Springtime in the Superstitions

The weather was perfect for a morning hike in the Superstition Mountain Foothills so I hit some familiar trails to see what's blooming. The Palo Verde are still wearing a bright yellow coating of springtime flowers that stand out against the green foliage of nearby shrubbery, while the Mesquite has the usual oblong flower that always attracts hundreds of bees. Still holding out is the Ironwood trees that will be covered with thousands of fragile, yet subtle violet blossom.

The Giant Saguaro are sprouting buds and some even changing to the stunning bouquet of white flowers at the ends of their long arms. The Prickly Pear, the Hedgehog and the Stag Horn cacti have flowers in the early stages of blooming and will soon decorate the desert floor with their yellow, red and golden blossoms.

It truly is an amAZing time of year to be out enjoying the desert, but too soon, we're going to be contending with the summer's heat and the potential dangers of the Monsoon storms. But until that time comes, I'll still be out, with my camera, enjoying the beauty that confronts me at every turn in the trails.
:)
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
Giant Saguaro, Prickly Pear, Palo Verde, etc....
_____________________
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.
1 archive
Dec 17 2018
AZLumberjack
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 15
 Photos 4,001
 Triplogs 477

80 male
 Joined Feb 17 2010
 Apache Junction,
Massacre FallsPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 17 2018
AZLumberjack
Hiking2.50 Miles 458 AEG
Hiking2.50 Miles   2 Hrs   20 Mns   1.07 mph
458 ft AEG
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I wanted to get out and hike a couple of miles this morning and the Massacre Trail fit my demands nicely. I started out a bit before 07:00 while the sun was still behind the mountains but plenty of light to navigate by. Nobody was at the First Water Road Trailhead as I headed out, a bit cool but still comfortable. My hike took me as far as the old original Massacre Falls Trailhead at the Wilderness fence line and then on to the rock outcropping where a small, shallow cave sits on the side of the rocks. I have visited the cave on past hikes but this time I wanted to do some exploring around to see if there was evidence that the cave had been used in the past.

I climbed up the rocks to the cave entrance and looked inside, nope, no one's home. The cave is natural occurring and typically volcanic in nature, about seven feet deep, three feet high and eight to ten feet across. I laid on my back and did kind of a butt-walk to get further inside. The ceiling has a fairly thick layer of creosote from past fires that indicated more usage than from recreational fires or someone using the cave to get out of the weather for a short period. and then I noticed it.... there, right next to my foot was a Metate (a flat stone with a recessed area commonly used by early Native Americans for grinding grains and/or seeds). The stone (metate) was a naturally occurring part of the floor of the cave, not one that had been carried in and showed that it had seen a fair amount of usage.

I looked around the inside of the cave for tools or pottery sherds but found none then went outside and searched the immediate area for any signs of early habitation but again, found none. Since this cave is not large enough for more than a temporary seasonal usage, questions come to mind if this cave was used by the Apache during the Perlata Massacre as this is adjacent to the Massacre Grounds. Gotta love this kind of hiking.
:)
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
I saw a few Brittlebush flowers, one Mexican Poppy and lots of red, ripe Wolf Berries on the bush.
_____________________
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.
average hiking speed 1.57 mph
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 ... 24  Next

WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

help comment issue

end of page marker