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233 triplogs

Jan 26 2014
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Shaw Butte Trail #306Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 26 2014
winotron
Hiking6.05 Miles 954 AEG
Hiking6.05 Miles   2 Hrs   45 Mns   2.50 mph
954 ft AEG      20 Mns Break5 LBS Pack
 
Partners none no partners
Wanted to do both North Mountain and Shaw Butte last week but had to cut it short, so I came back this weekend for Shaw Butte. Started from the Visitor Center trailhead, taking the 100 trail to the Shaw Butte loop and back. We went CCW through the loop. Nice steady climb in elevation all the way to the summit.

The tower-filled summit was pretty cool, with pretty good views all around. The traffic on the way up was fairly heavy, but surprisingly there was almost no one on the actual summit. Also went up the other smaller hill next to Shaw Butte before descending down the south side... not sure if this other hill has a name or not.

Coming down the south side of Shaw Butte was interesting, with the Cloud Nine restaurant remains and cool views of downtown. Didn't see many people coming up the south side as we were going down. Overall I thought this was a nice city hike with a unique feel to it, and considering the convenience of the location I will likely be back here frequently.
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Jan 18 2014
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
North Mountain - PhoenixPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 18 2014
winotron
Hiking5.57 Miles 1,184 AEG
Hiking5.57 Miles   2 Hrs   30 Mns   2.57 mph
1,184 ft AEG      20 Mns Break5 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
My first time at the North Mountain & Shaw Butte side of the Phoenix Mountains. Not as many people here as I was expecting...the parking lot off of 7th st and Peoria was less than half full. I went the clockwise route through the North Mountain Trail starting from behind the Quechan Ramada. This trail was steeper and more difficult than I was expecting. A lot of elevation gain in a short distance. I saw only 1 other person on this side of the trail. When I got to the summit I was wondering where all the people came from. I realized that most of them came up the asphalt road from the other side, and that I probably took the hard way up, lol. I was glad I avoided that crowd though. Nice views from the summit.

I planned on taking the 101 connector trail to Shaw Butte but I ended up cutting it short. I still took the 101 but decided to try the Maxine Lakin Nature trail instead. After being on what I thought was the Maxine Lakin trail for half a mile or so and not seeing a single other person, I realized I was actually starting to steeply climb back up the north side of North Mountain again, so at this point I turned back to the parking lot. I guess I didn't stay on the 100 trail long enough to get to the Maxine Lakin trail. Will have to try that again next time.

After taking the 101 trail back I mostly went off-trail paralleling 7th st back to the parking lot. Getting back to the parking lot I realized I was coming out of an area that said "Area Closed"... whoops! Had a lot of fun on the trails today and I will definitely be back soon to also try out Shaw Butte. :)
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Jan 11 2014
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Brown's Ranch Road Trail - MSPNPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 11 2014
winotron
Hiking4.73 Miles 561 AEG
Hiking4.73 Miles   2 Hrs   20 Mns   2.37 mph
561 ft AEG      20 Mns Break3 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Partners none no partners
After a couple weeks off to let my blisters heal, I was looking for a moderately easy hike that wasn't too long. This time I taped up my feet and was blister-free. :) My first time at the McDowell Sonoran Preserve, and I'm not sure if I'll be back. A little too crowded to make the 45 min drive from home worth it. The parking lot was packed, and there were huge crowds just hanging around the trailhead, but there weren't quite as many people on the trails as we expected (thankfully).

We did a counter-clockwise loop through the Brown's Mountain Trail (hitting the summit along the way) and all the way back down the Upper Ranch Trail. All the trails are very well-marked and easy to follow. The Brown's Ranch Road Trail was pretty uneventful, but a pretty good climb on the Brown's Mountain Trail. The summit was very steep and slippery, but short. Excellent 360° views. We had the summit to ourselves for our 10 min break, but saw a few people coming up as we were going back down. We planned to extend the loop via the Cone Mountain and Hackamore Trails, but we got a late start today and had to cut the hike short.
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Jan 01 2014
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Sonoran Preserve - North AreaPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 01 2014
winotron
Hiking5.80 Miles 609 AEG
Hiking5.80 Miles   2 Hrs   40 Mns   2.40 mph
609 ft AEG      15 Mns Break3 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Decided to try out the northern part of the Sonoran Preserve today. Did a counter-clockwise loop through the first part of the Sidewinder Trail, up to the Apache Vista, down the Ridgeback Trail to the Ridgeback Overlook, then the Ocotillo Trail back to the trailhead.

There were lots of people in the park today, but the crowd really thinned out once we passed Apache Vista. Once we were on the Ridgeback Trail, we saw almost no one. Bit of a hazy day out, but the view from the Ridgeback Overlook was probably the best I've experienced in either side of the Preserve so far.

Another nice day at the Sonoran Preserve. Next time I'm here I'll have to go further down the Sidewinder Trail and make a longer loop out of it.
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Dec 29 2013
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
H4 Loop - Thunderbird ParkPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 29 2013
winotron
Hiking5.85 Miles 580 AEG
Hiking5.85 Miles   2 Hrs   45 Mns   2.26 mph
580 ft AEG      10 Mns Break3 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
We started from the 67th ave. trailhead, and the parking lot was packed. Every parking lot in the park was packed, actually, and even more people were looking and waiting for spots. Did the Sunrise/H4 trail, then clockwise through Cholla Loop/H3, and back down the Coach Whip/H1 trail to where we started. Good views of the NW valley from the small summits.

The trails were decent, and thankfully the crowd thinned out a bit once we got to the Cholla Loop, but there were just too many people in the park for it to be very enjoyable.
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Dec 25 2013
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Dixie Mountain Loop - Sonoran PreservePhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 25 2013
winotron
Hiking6.78 Miles 669 AEG
Hiking6.78 Miles   3 Hrs   5 Mns   2.47 mph
669 ft AEG      20 Mns Break3 LBS Pack
 no routes
Christmas morning hike, back to the Sonoran Preserve. Extended the loop a bit this time by adding on the Desert Tortoise and Valle Verde (named the Valle Vista trail on HAZ for some reason...maybe an old name?) trails. Did the Western Vista summit this time instead of the Dixie summit. Nice views from the Western Vista summit. No one on the trails when we got there before 10am, but by noon we were seeing quite a few people. Nice warm and clear day to be out.

Saw a coyote maybe 50 ft away from us along the Valle Verde trail who seemed to be hunting for food. He looked at us, wasn't too impressed, and walked on. :) Wasn't able to get a good shot of him though.
Culture
Culture
Memorial
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Dec 21 2013
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Spur Cross LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 21 2013
winotron
Hiking6.43 Miles 439 AEG
Hiking6.43 Miles   3 Hrs   5 Mns   2.34 mph
439 ft AEG      20 Mns Break3 LBS Pack
 no routes
I liked Spur Cross Ranch so much when I was here a couple weeks ago that I brought my girlfriend back here today. Lots of cars in the parking lot when we got there, but we didn't see a whole lot of people on the trails.

Skipped the Elephant Mountain trail this time, and checked out the Metate and Towhee side of the park instead. The Metate and Towhee trails were nice strolls through a very lush area. The Tortuga Trail was especially muddy and slippery from the rain, and we nearly ate it a few times. We were hoping there were still some fall colors to be seen around the creek, and there were. There was a little more water in the creek this time from the rain the past couple days, but mostly just standing pools of water.

Walking back to our car we heard a large group of coyotes back down by the Spur Cross Trail that were very excited about something, and I got a good look at one of them. Wish we could have gotten a look at the whole group.

This park has become one of my favorite hikes, and I believe I'll be coming back often. :)
Named place
Named place
Elephant Mountain Metate Pond
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Light
Still some nice fall colors along the creek.
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Dec 13 2013
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Dixie Mountain Loop - Sonoran PreservePhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 13 2013
winotron
Hiking5.38 Miles 695 AEG
Hiking5.38 Miles   2 Hrs   10 Mns   2.81 mph
695 ft AEG      15 Mns Break3 LBS Pack
 no routes
My first time at the Sonoran Preserve. Short trip starting at the Hawk's Nest trail. Did the Dixie Mountain Loop, going up the Dixie Summit along the way. Went on a Friday morning so I didn't see more than 3 other people in the park. Had the Dixie summit all to myself. :) Pretty steep, but short, climb on the Dixie summit. Some modest ups and downs along the Dixie Mountain Loop kept it interesting.

Thought about doing the Western Vista summit on the way back, but I was starting to get blisters from not wearing the right socks so decided to call it a day. All the trails in the park are well-marked, and the park's map makes it easy to plan a nice loop. This park is only a few minutes farther from my house than Piestewa, so I'll probably start driving the extra few mins to avoid the huge crowds at Piestewa.
Culture
Culture
Benchmark
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Dec 08 2013
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Butcher Jones Trail #463Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 08 2013
winotron
Hiking5.40 Miles 600 AEG
Hiking5.40 Miles   2 Hrs   40 Mns   2.31 mph
600 ft AEG      20 Mns Break3 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Nice breezy, chilly day at Saguaro Lake. We saw several people coming back when we were starting out, but after the first mile we saw no one else. The view from Burro Cove was awesome, with snow-capped Four Peaks framed in front of us. Didn't see much wildlife other than a Great Blue Heron, but there were nice views of the lake and Salt River pretty much the whole trail.
Named place
Named place
Saguaro Lake
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
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Dec 06 2013
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Spur Cross LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 06 2013
winotron
Hiking7.36 Miles 839 AEG
Hiking7.36 Miles   3 Hrs   50 Mns   2.21 mph
839 ft AEG      30 Mns Break5 LBS Pack
 no routes
My first hike in the Cave Creek area, and I'll definitely be back. Started out on the Spur Cross Trail. Continued up the Tortuga, then counter-clockwise through the Elephant Mountain Trail. Finished off the loop with the Dragonfly trail, through "Jewel of the Creek", and back up the road 1/4 mile to the parking lot.

Went on a Friday morning so I saw almost no one else on the trails. The solitude was nice. Creek was nearly completely dry, which was kind of a bummer...only saw some small pools of water here and there. Really enjoyed the varied terrain and environments. This park has some of the biggest saguaros I've seen, and some nice cholla forests. Huge cottonwoods still hanging on to some great fall colors by the creek. I was surprised by how green a lot of places were.

All the trails were well marked, and you can grab a very well-made map at the entrance. Very nice park, and the few staff that I met were very nice people.
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Light
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Nov 24 2013
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Bluff Springs Trail #235Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 24 2013
winotron
Hiking5.10 Miles 1,015 AEG
Hiking5.10 Miles   3 Hrs      1.85 mph
1,015 ft AEG      15 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
A friend and I sort of accidentally hiked most of this trail. Never been here before so we did not know the trails. We intended to hike the Barks Lower Canyon Loop, but ended up staying on this trail for about 2.5 miles. We got to the point where the trail meets the signed Terrapin Trail junction and doubled back.

We made our way up the steady climb at the beginning, which I later found out is aptly-named Cardiac Hill. Great views on the way up here. There had been pretty heavy rain the previous 2 days, so the water was flowing nicely once we got into the canyon. If it weren't so cold today, the water would have looked very inviting. Making our way up out of the canyon where we hit the Terrapin Trail sign before doubling back was another nice workout.

It was overcast all day but we didn't get anything more than a sprinkle. Turned out to be a beautiful day! We saw maybe a handful of people the whole way. Spotted a desert tortoise right on the trail on the way back down Cardiac Hill, which was cool.
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
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Nov 17 2013
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Boulders Loop Trail - PATSPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 17 2013
winotron
Hiking4.70 Miles 300 AEG
Hiking4.70 Miles   2 Hrs   30 Mns   1.94 mph
300 ft AEG      5 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Took a day trip to Payson and checked out this trail. We came to the cul-de-sac at the end of Phoenix St. and weren't sure where this trail started exactly. There was a handwritten sign that said "New trail behind fence", so we followed that. The trail here was very flat and wide. Pretty heavily forested here with lots of shade. We saw a few friendly people here strolling with their dogs.

After about 1 mile, we came to a clearing with signs marked for "Boulders North" and "Boulders South." We chose the South route, which took us counter-clockwise through the loop. The trail immediately started to elevate a little here, and we were glad to get at least a bit of a challenge after the very flat first mile. Lots of great views of the surrounding boulder formations. There were lots of ATV paths branching off the main trail, but the trail itself was wide and very well-marked.

Halfway through the loop there is a large, rocky wash followed by a very large clearing, which looks like an ATV playground. The trail continues around along the edge of a huge ditch, until eventually you're back in the shady junipers and pines. The trail follows a small creek here most of the way back to the trailhead. The creek was flowing lightly the whole way, and we saw a bit of nice fall colors here.

All in all a scenic and easy trail that would also be great for children and pets. Despite seeming very ATV-friendly, we saw no ATVs on this Sunday morning. We saw maybe 4 or 5 small groups of people. With the extra 2 miles from and back to the cul-de-sac from the trailhead, this came to about 4.7 miles total. My first triplog -- will get better photos next time!
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Light
A bit of autumn foliage around the creek.
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Nov 08 2013
winotron
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 6
 Photos 1,167
 Triplogs 298

37 male
 Joined Nov 12 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Roper Lake State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 08 2013
winotron
Hiking5.00 Miles 100 AEG
Hiking5.00 Miles   2 Hrs      2.50 mph
100 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
My girlfriend and I spent a couple nights in one of the small cabins at Roper Lake. We spent one day mainly at the lake, just exploring and hiking the short trails around the park, and the 2nd day we spent on Mt Graham. Something about this area really woke something up in me. It's absolutely beautiful. The trip up to Mt Graham was incredible, and Roper Lake had a peaceful kind of beauty to it. I love how Mt Graham just looms above you.

Before heading back home we drove the Coronado Trail, HWY 191, from Clifton/Morenci up to Springerville. The drive was awesome to say the least. I've driven from desert to pines countless times, from Phoenix to Flagstaff/Payson/Prescott, etc, but this was different. The scenery was just awe-inspiring every step of the way. We saw very few other drivers the whole day, which was wonderful. My recommendation if you're going to take this drive: take your time, make plenty of stops, and try to forget that you actually have to go back home afterwards.

This trip really inspired me. It made me feel foolish for exploring so little of Arizona until now. I guess I was always one of those Phoenicians who would only "go up north" to escape. Not anymore. I had no concept of Safford, Mt Graham, or really any of the places we saw on this trip. I realize now how beautiful and unique Eastern AZ is, and I can't wait to come back.
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1 archive
average hiking speed 2.35 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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