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507 triplogs
Jul 10 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Popo Agie FallsCentral, WY
Central, WY
Hiking avatar Jul 10 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking3.49 Miles 690 AEG
Hiking3.49 Miles   1 Hour   32 Mns   2.33 mph
690 ft AEG      2 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
This description should really just be called Popo Agie Falls, I may fill in the description page and put in the more commonly known name in as the title. I am sure they are also referred to as the Middle Fork Falls, as they are along the middle fork of the Popo Agie, but locally and at the trailhead they are simply referred to as Popo Agie Falls.

This was my last hike in the Wind River Range and was just meant to be a quick stroll before hitting the road. My expectations were not overly high and I honestly just expected a stretch of cascades in the river. But the falls area actually proved to be pretty spectacular. There were several impressive falls consolidated in this geologically odd area where it seems the river just decided to change course and plunge in an almost dog leg like direction off a cliff into the main water course below. The trail was well maintained and easy to follow. It is clear that these falls are a popular destination, but I was able to get up to the falls and back with only passing two fisherman.

I would definitely recommend this hike to anyone in the area looking for a short hike or looking for a more family friendly hike.
Named place
Named place
Popo Agie Falls
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Jul 09 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Silas Lake TrailCentral, WY
Central, WY
Hiking avatar Jul 09 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking8.02 Miles 1,336 AEG
Hiking8.02 Miles   3 Hrs   45 Mns   2.41 mph
1,336 ft AEG      25 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
This was one of my favorite day hikes I did in the Winds. The trail was in great shape and there was plenty of water along the way for the pups. Upper Silas Lake is an excellent backcountry destination and the area has several lakes near by that can be reached via various social trails. I think I will return here one day and backpack into Island Lake for an overnight trip with some side exploring.
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Jul 06 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Scab Creek TH to Dream LakeCentral, WY
Central, WY
Backpack avatar Jul 06 2021
friendofThundergod
Backpack22.00 Miles 3,356 AEG
Backpack22.00 Miles2 Days         
3,356 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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I spent my first few days in the Wind River Range hiking some more fringe areas and areas that I had not been to. I was enjoying the new sites and short hikes with the pups, but the whole time I was pining to get into the backcountry. However, a system of storms was producing some typical summer like storm conditions in the range and I was waiting on a nearly clear forecast. Backpacking with wet dogs is no fun and admittedly I don’t have much tolerance for sitting out electrical storms in tents these days.

A three day window of clear weather finally appeared and with some creativity to work around Blanco’s old body and inspiration from my hiking guide, I nailed down a three day itinerary that could get us deep enough into the backcountry to scratch my itch. Dream Lake via the Scab Creek trailhead via a base camp at Divide or the Lightning Lakes.

We camped the night before at the Scab Creek campground, which is a nice fee free campground with well taken care of outhouses and potable water. The campground was nearly empty when I was there.

I started hiking around 8:30 in the morning from the official trailhead parking lot. The first couple miles was a steady climb through a forest and although it was not overly steep, I did find myself a little winded at times with the heavier pack. There are no big mountain sky line views for the first several miles, but I enjoyed the nice forest hiking past some pretty nice, but standard for the area alpine lakes. I knew there was good camping at Divide Lake and it was at six miles in, but I gambled on there being good camping at one of the Lightning Lakes. My gamble paid off and I got us a nice site in a meadow across from the largest of the Lightning Lakes.

Initially, the bugs were not that bad, however about an hour and a half before night fall the mosquitoes came out. Both dogs went into the tent early and very willingly. I followed shortly after. We would pretty much be marooned in my tent until sometime after seven the next morning, when the mosquitos finally died down some with the morning sun. But it was still a quick morning pack needless to say, as some lingering mosquitoes stuck around for breakfast. Annoying, but manageable.

The hike to dream lake was more of the same for two miles and then the big views finally showed up. Front and center was a five square mile meadow flanking the upper reaches of the South Fork of Boulder Creek. The next mile and a half or so to the shores of Dream Lake were simply spectacular. With a skyline of Dragon’s Head, Pronghorn Peak, Bonneville and Raider Peak in front of us the entire time. Dream Lake was worthy of its name. I had hoped to spend some time at the lake, as all we had was time and daylight. However, the bugs were a little worse than I had hoped and we left after a quick backpackers bath. Also I should note, the bugs were tolerable for me, but they get irksome for the dogs pretty quickly when you stop and rest, so we pushed on. We took another longer break at the ford of south fork where the bugs were pretty light and then just generally strolled home. Well the dogs chased around three dozen squirrels and a couple of marmots on the way back, I walked.

It sprinkled for a few minutes at camp and threatened to do more for a few hours, which we appreciated as the clouds brought shade and the higher winds kept the bugs at bay some. Nevertheless, as the night before, the bugs won out and we retreated to our tent sanctuary rather early.

We tried to wake up before the bugs for our hike out, but that did not happen. Packing up around five in the morning was a tad brutal and hurried to say the least. We cruised to the trailhead and didn’t stop long enough for the mosquitoes to be a problem and were back at the car just before nine.

This was simply a very fulfilling backpack on so many levels for me. Although, it adds a lot of work and some stress, I loved being able to get both my dogs out there. They bring me a lot of joy and happiness on the trail. In particular, it was great to see Blanco getting around so well and I am grateful to be able to include him on yet another adventure in the Winds. I found some of the views to be absolutely spectacular and on par with some of the better panoramic views in the Winds. The five square mile meadow near the headwaters of Boulder Creek’s south fork should be on every backpacking enthusiasts lists. This was certainly a more obscure route to the Winds backcountry, but it was rewarding and I am excited to incorporate aspects of this trip into some sort of more ambitious traverse of the range.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
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2 archives
Jul 04 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Alaska Basin TrailYellowstone, WY
Yellowstone, WY
Climbing avatar Jul 04 2021
friendofThundergod
Climbing1.00 Miles 200 AEG
Climbing1.00 Miles
200 ft AEG      13 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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I have been staying in Pinedale since last Thursday. I spent my first few days hiking some fringe areas that I have not been to before and waiting out a little weather system for a potential trip into the backcountry. Yesterday, I drove a couple of hours to Idaho to climb in Wyoming.

This area is an extremely popular area and the trailhead was almost sickening busy. Of course the weekend and holiday were contributing factors to this, but I was pretty shocked at the amount of people hiking this trail. Nevertheless, the climbing was fun, the setting was amazing and the nature of a couple of the multipitch routes provided a sense of adventure. The rock was granite and relatively featured for granite too, which made the climbing fun. Climbs in the area ranged from five fun easy trad lines to extremely technical sport lines up to 5.14a and a few multipitch routes. I really enjoyed the morning out climbing and the cost of entry could not be much lower, the first crag we went to and main wall is about a ten minute approach from the trailhead. In fact, the formidable main wall can be seen as you pull up to the trailhead. A little warm though, we climbed until there was no shade. I can't imagine climbing on those walls in direct summer sun.

Happy Fourth of July!
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2 archives
Jul 03 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Boulder Canyon TrailCentral, WY
Central, WY
Hiking avatar Jul 03 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking6.49 Miles 722 AEG
Hiking6.49 Miles   2 Hrs   54 Mns   2.53 mph
722 ft AEG      20 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
Just another light day hike in the Wind River Range with the pups. The first mile or so was a little meh, as you had to walk the road a bit to get to the “official” trailhead that has no parking because it’s in a campground and then there was some ranch property to parallel for a few minutes, but after that the trail got good.

Boulder Creek was a stunning little creek to walk next to. It absolutely thunders in spots as it makes its way down several scenic cascades that can be seen intermittently through the trees. The trail got a little buggy as if left the creek to pass by a few marshy areas and tarns, but in general they were not bad by Winds standards. We turned around just past at a nice campsite where the river widens out and the current dramatically decreases. After taking a quick swim and then exploring a little further up stream we returned the way we came. The trail was in excellent shape and was easy to follow.
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1 archive
Jul 02 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
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39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
New Fork TrailCentral, WY
Central, WY
Hiking avatar Jul 02 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking5.07 Miles 617 AEG
Hiking5.07 Miles   2 Hrs   28 Mns   2.29 mph
617 ft AEG      15 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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I did this little hike on my second day in the Wind River Range. I kept the miles low, as it was just kind of a sight seeing day and myself and the dogs were still a little weary from the long drive out from Michigan.

The trailhead area was a little busy with hikers, boaters nearby and a horse party prepping for a trip into the backcountry. The trail was in excellent shape and the views along the north shore of the lake were superb. The trail was a little warm however, as there was not much shade apart from a short stretch in the beginning. We turned around sometime just after Boulder Basin and spent a little time at the “beach” on the far end of the lake.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
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Jul 01 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Spring Creek Park TrailheadCentral, WY
Central, WY
Hiking avatar Jul 01 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking3.27 Miles 577 AEG
Hiking3.27 Miles   1 Hour   43 Mns   1.98 mph
577 ft AEG      4 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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I got into Pinedale early in the afternoon on the first, so there was time for a quick hike. I started from the Spring Creek Trailhead. A place I had never been to. I would end up camping in the area for four days, but only completed this small hike from the trailhead.

I actually started this hike twice. I parked at the lower and more obvious trailhead to start, but after a half mile of seeing that the trail was paralleling the road I had driven in on, I checked my book and realized I could have started a mile further up. I wasn’t worried about the walking, but knew I wanted to get to the views from the ridgeline and still had to find a campsite, get water, settle in, etc, so I turned around and restarted at the “upper” trailhead.

The ridgeline did prove to be the highlight of the short little hike and the views lived up to the hype. The rest of the hike was just a pleasant stroll through a nice forest. Spring Creek Park looked to be a bit of a dud from the trail and was fenced off for cattle. The trail was well maintained and easy to follow.
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Jun 25 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Sturgeon Falls TrailNorthern, MI
Northern, MI
Hiking avatar Jun 25 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking2.30 Miles 402 AEG
Hiking2.30 Miles   1 Hour      2.34 mph
402 ft AEG      1 Min Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Katie and I spent three days in the western Upper Peninsula during my current stay here in Michigan. We went as far as the famed Lake of the Clouds in the Porcupine Mountains, completed a pretty spectacular waterfall tour loop by vehicle, made the obligatory stop at Tahquamenon Falls along the way and climbed at Silver Mountain on our final day. Michigan’s Upper Peninsula has countless high quality waterfalls along wild and scenic rivers, as impressive as anything in the west. These waterfalls were located in the Sturgeon River Gorge Wilderness.

The Sturgeon River Gorge Wilderness is a 16,744 acre wilderness along the stunning Sturgeon River. The river runs through a 350 feet deep, one mile wide gorge for much of its wilderness boundaries. The trail was in excellent shape and there was an informative kiosk and wilderness sign at its trailhead. The trail takes you through an idyllic fern forest of mixed hardwood, hemlocks and various conifers. A couple of well thought out switchbacks get you to the river and a couple of use trails will get you some views of the falls and river. We returned the way we hiked in and left impressed.
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3 archives
Jun 25 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Silver MountainNorthern, MI
Northern, MI
Climbing avatar Jun 25 2021
friendofThundergod
Climbing0.25 Miles 10 AEG
Climbing0.25 Miles
10 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Crag day in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. As with most of our stops in the U.P. this area exceeded our expectations. The climbing was great and the wall was very aesthetic with a rainbow look and an intimidating roof that stretched for most of its length. The top out views just above the trees were superb as well. I probably enjoyed a nice 5.9 trad line and the classic 10b sport line there the most. A great crag and cool area in general. The Ottowa National Forest is scenic to drive through and the roads were in great condition and well signed.
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Jun 24 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Lake Superior Trail and Big Carp River LoopNorthern, MI
Northern, MI
Hiking avatar Jun 24 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking0.70 Miles 132 AEG
Hiking0.70 Miles      22 Mns   2.00 mph
132 ft AEG      1 Min Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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We only walked to the viewpoint for the Lake of the Clouds. The views of the lake were impressive and although they don’t compare to anything out west, the rolling Porcupine "Mountains" and its defining escarpment provided a really scenic setting and backdrop. There are actually a lot of worthy hiking and backpacking destinations in the Porcupine Mountains and they have a pretty robust backcountry trail network. I would not mind returning one day.
Named place
Named place
Lake of the Clouds
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6 archives
Jun 24 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Canyon FallsNorthern, MI
Northern, MI
Hiking avatar Jun 24 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking1.33 Miles 147 AEG
Hiking1.33 Miles      54 Mns   1.56 mph
147 ft AEG      3 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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This was a great waterfall for its relative ease of access. In fact, we found it to be one of the more scenic falls we visited and it’s setting was pretty spectacular. The falls are located in a gorge along the Sturgeon River and have been given the moniker, “Grand Canyon of the U.P.”

Canyon Falls are located off one of the many, “Roadside Scenic Areas” that dot Michigan’s’ Upper Peninsula. There is an established trailhead with restrooms and an informative kiosk. The trailhead also offers a gateway to the Great Northern Trail. The trail to the falls is a combination of dirt path and boardwalk. I imagine this roadside attraction gets busy on weekends, but we pretty much had it to ourselves on a Thursday morning.
Named place
Named place
Canyon Falls Sturgeon River
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Jun 24 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
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 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Bond FallsNorthern, MI
Northern, MI
Hiking avatar Jun 24 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking0.20 Miles 45 AEG
Hiking0.20 Miles
45 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Michigan's Upper Peninsula has a high concentration of scenic, high quality waterfalls. Like Bond Falls, most of the waterfalls are family friendly and easy to reach. We did a quick stop at Bond Falls after spending a day in the Porcupine Mountains and starting the day at Canyon Falls. We also made a stop at Agate Falls nearby, which like Bond Falls, is also located on the middle branch of the Ontonagon River.
Named place
Named place
Bond Falls
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1 archive
Jun 22 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Rifle River Recreation AreaEastern, MI
Eastern, MI
Hiking avatar Jun 22 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking5.84 Miles 415 AEG
Hiking5.84 Miles   2 Hrs   4 Mns   3.21 mph
415 ft AEG      15 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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I spent a lot of time as a kid in the Rifle River Recreation Area, so it’s always make it a point to get out there a few times when I am home. There is actually a pretty underrated network of trails in the park that offer about as nice of hiking as one could expect in the area. We did a little loop that was just under six miles, it did include a little road walking to connect, but it was a weekday and there were not many people out. We got rained on pretty good for awhile and surprisingly the bugs were not bad. Highlights of the hike for me were the nice green forest and the two bridge crossings of the Rifle River.
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Jun 11 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Bear Creek Trail #66Alpine, AZ
Alpine, AZ
Horseback avatar Jun 11 2021
friendofThundergod
Horseback1.00 Miles 100 AEG
Horseback1.00 Miles   5 Hrs      0.20 mph
100 ft AEG
 
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I think I enjoy taking the boys on these summer camps as much as I enjoy coaching sometimes. After two trips to Colorado and a summer lost to the pandemic, we opted for the White Mountains this year and a dual team tournament at Show Low High School on Saturday.

A non profit provided us with tents and meals and we stayed from Thursday to Sunday in the woods, with a trip into Show Low to wrestle on Saturday. Wrestling speaking, we went 4-0 our pool and lost in the cross bracket match for first. Outdoors wise, we had a blast. Nearly three days of no service and some great fun at camp. We camped just over 8,000 feet and although it got a little warm at points throughout the day, the nights and mornings were perfect. The horseback ride was the highlight of the trip this year. We started at Sprucedale Ranch and then plotted a meandering course through the woods to the Bear Creek Trail. From there we rode down to the Black river and headed up stream to complete a loop back with the ranch. There were several crossings and the ride was a little technical, but we all managed and the boys had a blast. In particular, they were big fans of the swim hole and lunch stop, especially, after three plus hours on a horse. I must say, five hours on a horse is a long time and I found it to bother my knees a bit, plus saddle sore is real. However, I left wanting more surprisingly. There is something nostalgic about riding a horse and it was such a cool way to see my stomping grounds. In fact, I inquired about a stay at Sprucedale and another ride in September or October with Katie and hope to get back there.

I left this camp feeling fulfilled, but absolutely exhausted. I really like getting these kids out of the valley during the summer and into the woods, and with the pandemic last year and the loss of most team activities, it felt extra special to be able to get the boys out to a camp again this summer. I think we will be back for sure.
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Jun 06 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
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39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Tritle PeakNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Climbing avatar Jun 06 2021
friendofThundergod
Climbing1.00 Miles 100 AEG
Climbing1.00 Miles   3 Hrs      0.33 mph
100 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
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Myself, Katie and a Spencer met Pernell and Mel to climb Tritle Peak this morning. By Canyon standards the cost of entry for Tritle Peak is pretty low, as the diminutive peak sits a mere four-tenths of a mile off the north rim. Tritle is probably not a destination climb and peak, but we were all in the area and were happy to meet up for a lower key summit.

We got to Roosevelt a little before seven and left shortly after. Pernell arrived shortly after us and met us at the base of the climb. I was about three quarters of the way up the easy climb when they arrived. It took us 30 minutes to reach the base with a pretty leisurely pace. There is a maintained trail for the first two tenths of a mile and then a pretty easy to follow use trail the rest of the way. Traverse west of the first formation and then approach the base of the climb by contouring around Tritle to it’s north ridge.

The climbing was pretty easy and a little unspectacular, but the summit was great and we all had fun. When looking up from the base of the climb, take the obvious weaknesses to the notch, which involves a traverse along a loose edge. Then make the semi committing move into the notch and climb straight to the summit. I would recommend a single rack up to a number four, with maybe a couple extra sizes in the bd .3-.5 range. A single 60m will get you down. Rap off the large bush on the obvious ledge just below the summit block.

A great little summit and a great morning off the north rim with good friends. I could definitely see myself running up this one again in the future. It took us about three hours to get five people up the summit and back to the rim.
Named place
Named place
Tritle Peak
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4 archives
May 31 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
 Routes 314
 Photos 9,094
 Triplogs 866

39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Rose Spring Trail #309Alpine, AZ
Alpine, AZ
Hiking avatar May 31 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking5.87 Miles 1,231 AEG
Hiking5.87 Miles   2 Hrs   45 Mns   2.32 mph
1,231 ft AEG      13 Mns Break
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
Bear Wallow Wilderness gives me a lot of nostalgia. For some odd reason, Bear Wallow and the Blue Range popped up on my radar one bored summer day in July seven years ago and I have not looked back since.

The last time I hiked Rose Spring Trail was nearly seven years to the date and I was pleased with how much the area has recovered and pleased with the obvious trail maintenance that has been done. There is a new information kiosk detailing the events of the Wallow Fire at the trailhead and a new wilderness sign shortly after that. The trail has been cleared somewhat recently and there are few new reroutes near some areas where the trail had been heavily damaged by the rim. We turned around after only a couple of miles, because our older pups were going on three straight days of hiking and fun, but we still enjoyed the short slice of trail, its big views, the excellent trail and rapidly rebounding forest. Our track starts at an excellent campsite about a half mile before the trailhead.
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May 30 2021
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 Guides 28
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39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Pueblo ParkSouthwest, NM
Southwest, NM
Car Camping avatar May 30 2021
friendofThundergod
Car Camping
Car Camping2 Days         
 no routes
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We spent some time around the Pueblo Park area during our four day trip to the Blue Range this past weekend. The area is a little warm this time of year for our dogs, but we were still able to knock out some short hikes and an early morning off trail excursion to a set of ruins I had been wondering about since my first visit to this area in 2015. The ruins ended up being pretty amazing and we were able to get up to them and back with the dogs before the heat set in. Although, getting to them required trusting a semi suspect hanging ladder that added a little more spice to the ruin hunt than anticipated. After checking out the ruins, we headed back up for higher country and hiked a mile in on Hinkle Park Trail #36. The trail is not on HAZ, but it was on my Blue Range map. The first mile was promising. I would like to get back to hike more of this trail. We also made an attempt at reaching the Saddle Mountain Lookout, but the gate was closed about a mile, or so from the summit and I was tired of walking.

I am starting to really like this area, it offers some great opportunities for some off the beaten path exploration. In fact, I have a lot of things I want to do in this area after this weekend and I would not be surprised if I end up out here again before the end of the summer.
Culture
Culture
Risky
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May 28 2021
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39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Raspberry Trail #35Alpine, AZ
Alpine, AZ
Backpack avatar May 28 2021
friendofThundergod
Backpack12.00 Miles 2,300 AEG
Backpack12.00 Miles2 Days         
2,300 ft AEG
 
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I don’t know how it took me so long to hike the Raspberry Trail. Over the years, I had passed by its upper trailhead and lower terminus at the Blue several times, but a lack of knowledge about the trail and fire damage in the area had always pushed this one to the back burner.

My interest for the trail was piqued last year upon learning of some recent trail maintenance and the planting of Gila Trout in Raspberry Creek. However, as luck would have it, by the time I finally got out to hike the trail, I think I hiked it while it was closed, as it was on the periphery of the Bringham Fire. I did not start at the “correct” trailhead that day and completely missed the big closed sign on the trailhead kiosk before I started. Closure aside, this was only a short hike anyways, but it was enough to convince me the area was worth returning to.

Memorial Weekend 2021:

After making the short drive up from the valley Thursday night and staying at the Strayhorse Campground, we hit the trail Friday morning. We started our hike to a cool morning in a pleasant, tidy, pine forest around 7,800 feet. The first couple miles of the trail are spent contouring along the slopes of the rim and Blue Peak on excellent trail. The up and down nature of the trail through here will get your blood going, but each drainage you dropped into and climbed out of along here proved to be very scenic in nature. Ferns, ponderosa and hardwoods. Nearly everyone of these drainages had a muddy seep and marked spring on the topo, however apart from one, none of them offered as much as a drink for the dogs. Around mile three the trail enters an excellent mixed forest of conifers and hardwoods. The fine line between devastation and survival during a wildfire is evident along this stretch of trail and through Raspberry Basin. Running water appeared around the fourth mile and we hiked along a flowing stream for the rest of the day. The gurgling, columbine lined creek and excellent trail made for some of the most pleasant hiking I have done in the Blue Range to date. Campsites were few and far between along the trail, but we made an excellent site on a bench along the creek around mile five.

We spent the day reading, napping and enjoying our surrounding along Raspberry Creek for most of the day, however, we did complete a short hike downstream to further explore the area. We turned around at a burned corral that did not survive the last fire that went through here. I still want to complete the final portion of Raspberry Trail to the Blue, but I left feeling more than satisfied with our small incursion into the area. We returned the way we hiked in on the second day.

Raspberry Trail and Creek offer some of the more pleasant and scenic hiking that can be found in the Blue Range and the cost of admission is relatively low by Blue standards. We did not see any Gila Trout, but I plan to return to the area for some more intimate exploring in the future. I am extremely grateful for what survived along this trail and hopeful for the recovery of the surrounding forest and continued maintenance by the forest service.
Flora
Flora
Yellow Columbine
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3 archives
May 08 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
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 Photos 9,094
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39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Carbon ButteNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Backpack avatar May 08 2021
friendofThundergod
Backpack34.00 Miles 7,628 AEG
Backpack34.00 Miles2 Days         
7,628 ft AEG
 
1st trip
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After a slow start, its shaping up to be a Grand spring after all. Carbon Butte came up on my radar when I did Chuar Butte in the fall. From Carbon Canyon, Carbon Butte is nearly indistinguishable and rather unremarkable when compared to its counterparts in the area like Chuar and Temple Buttes. However, its more eye catching from the saddle of Chuar where I first spotted it and I have been intrigued by the off the beaten path butte since the last time I passed through the area, so I decided to give it a go. I thought I had scouted the line to the summit on my last visit and was told it was pretty straight forward, so I felt confident in reaching the summit, but not as easy with the long approach.

We stepped off on Tanner Trail around 4:30 a.m and then it was a pretty standard hike to the Palisades area and our crossing above Lava Rapids. The crossing there always gets my attention, but it seems to be getting easier each time. It was my partners first time in a packraft and his first time on the Colorado River obviously, but he did great, although, he left the crossing with some adrenaline. We cached our overnight supplies before we crossed the river and therefore committed ourselves to reaching the summit of Carbon and making it back down and across the Colorado before nightfall. After filtering five liters of water, we set off towards Carbon Butte. We cruised along the Butte Fault Route and over to Carbon, where we then headed up canyon after leaving behind our rafts.

The hike up Carbon Canyon was warm at times, but the geology was terrific and mindboggling as usual. We left Carbon Canyon proper for a small side drainage below Carbon Butte. Some light scrambling in this drainage brought us to the first steep ridgeline that appeared to gain Carbon´s north saddle and class three approach to its summit. The ridgeline was steep and we ended up scrambling a little near the top, but it "went" and we were on the summit in short time with minimal effort by Canyon standards. We signed the register quickly and headed right back down, as we wanted to ensure we would be reunited with our overnight supplies before nightfall. We found a better descent than the our ascent route and cruised back down to our side drainage with little effort. I would recommend the "painted" and semi obvious steep ridgeline for any future ascents and descents of Carbon Butte.

We generally made good time in getting back to our rafts and lucked out with a shaded descent of the Carbon Narrows. Five liters of water for the two of us proved to be just enough and we found ourselves pretty parched by the time we reached the river. We crossed far more down stream than my last crossing here and it paid off, as we avoided the powerful eddy that was seemingly trying to push us up into the rapids created by Carbon Creek last time. The float back to our crossing above Lava Rapids was pleasant as usual. We cowboy camped near the river and spent the night envious of the boaters celebrating and cooking tasty meals on the other side.

We woke up at 3:15 on Sunday and were headed back to the rim shortly after 4 a.m. We did not break any speed records on the way out, but we had a solid rest and eating plan in place that we followed, which prevented major energy collapses or hitting of the proverbial wall on the hike out.

Final Notes:

I would basically sum this trip up as a five star adventure for a two star summit. Carbon Butte proved to be a summit only a mother could love, but its location and setting can't be beat and we enjoyed the process. Carbon's first recorded ascent was in June of 1963 by Buchart and Springorum. Its on adventures like these that I feel closest to the spirit of Buchart and his feats. I like to think that we were drawn to this summit for many of the same reasons that he was and it satisfies me on a personal level. At 17.5 miles to the summit, I think this may be my new longest single day push to a summit to date. I am already excited for a return to this area and an attempt at Temple Butte. This was my 41st Grand Canyon. It was my partners third Grand Canyon summit. He has now done Zoraster, Hayden and Carbon with me, I can't think of a better first three summits.
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3 archives
Apr 25 2021
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 28
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39 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
North Canyon Trail #4Northwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 25 2021
friendofThundergod
Hiking2.77 Miles 447 AEG
Hiking2.77 Miles   1 Hour   41 Mns   2.05 mph
447 ft AEG      20 Mns Break
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
This was my first time on the lower portions of the North Canyon Trail. We only hiked in a little because we had a leaky tire and were a little weary from enduring a night of some of the heaviest winds I have attempted to sleep through in a tent. Needless to say, we were still happy with the short hike and this end of the North Canyon Trail.

The hiking was easy going and the tread was a nice soft sand for most of the hike. The scenery was superb along the short stretch we did and there was a nice prehistoric site along the way. I am eager to get back and knock out this entire trail in one hike or short backpack.
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3 archives
average hiking speed 2.18 mph
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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.

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