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142 triplogs
Apr 10 2021
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Rincon Double Feature, AZ 
Rincon Double Feature, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 10 2021
jacobemerick
Hiking31.88 Miles 7,927 AEG
Hiking31.88 Miles   15 Hrs   29 Mns   2.59 mph
7,927 ft AEG   3 Hrs   10 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Been curious (jealous) of all the fun trips in the Rincons, so headed down there and was absolutely blown away. This range is fantastical.

Turkey Creek Trail
Parked at Miller Creek Trailhead (46F, brr) and walked the roads in the dark, passing a half-dozen RVs along 4408 and reaching the trail in time to turn off my headlamp. Trail construction is fantastic (a common theme for the day) and I made quick work of the foothills, rounding 5220' and starting the meat of the climb with the rising sun. Temps were perfect - the steep slope worked up a healthy sweat, and I only had to pause for a few minutes for the cool air to chill me down. Anyways, reached Mudhole before 7AM and had decent shade for the rest of the climb, and I enjoyed the views of Reef Rock and the relentless uphill.

Deerhead / Switchback / Heartbreak
Deerhead was... a trail? After so much uphill this mostly flat route passed in a blink. Poked around Spud Rock campground, checking in on the spring. Quick break, then strode up Switchback, which was more memorable because it had (well-built) switchbacks. Heartbreak dragged, mostly because I was looking forward to topping Reef Rock. The marked drainage below Man Head had a trickle of water.

Fire Loop
Quick haul up to Man Head, during which my legs briefly thought about cramping, and then easy going under tall pines, with a soft breeze rustling underneath. The views from Reef Rock are fantastic, especially after gazing up at it all morning. There are a few lovely meadows to pass through, a handful of annoying drainages to roller-coaster through, overall this is a fun loop. Continued up to the summit of Mica Mountain, which offered no grand vista, just the remains of a fire tower.

Heading down was neat, with Spud Rock and Helen's Dome to check out, plus some good views north to Santa Catalinas. Spent some time gazing at Mount Lemmon, trying to retrace my visit last year and guess which flanks were hit hard with the fire. Eventually turned south and headed into Manning Camp (which was only manned by deer) and tanked up on water.

Manning Camp / Devil's Bathtub
Long, busy lunch break, and then headed down and quickly passed a few backpackers on their way up. Turned and headed east, where the burn damage picked up some. Didn't enjoy Devil's Bathtub as much, even with the big views - the day's heat was picking up and there's a lot of rocky exposure. Spring was trickling enough to almost be called a waterfall.

Heartbreak Ridge
I missed the tall pines of Mica Mountain quickly. There are views and interesting flora, and the trail is well-maintained, it just felt rather toasty in the afternoon sun. Made the quick haul up to the lookout, was neat to be halfway between the two peaks and have such a great view. Then there is that sudden, beautifully built set of switchbacks (boy was I happy to be going down them) and I was finally at the saddle.

Rincon Peak
Time for the "burnout". First mile is flat, and I used plenty of words to describe the rest of it, and flat was not one of them. Some overgrowth, some deadfall, and that last half mile had some confusing tread. Part of me enjoyed this trail, and I can see it being a fun standalone summit from Miller Creek. Doing it at the end of a long day was painful. When I reached the top I gazed at the panorama, swam in the vertigo, and then zoomed back down, ready to be done. Going downhill wasn't quite as tough as I thought it would be, and there were even a few sections that I jogged along.

Miller Creek
Not sure if I loved or hated this one. The trail construction is creative, and for as much elevation as it covers, there are a lot of flat switchbacks winding around the huge boulders. Had to turn on the headlamp about two miles in and navigate a few confusing twists. Last mile through the creek dragged. Think I need to do this again in the light to fully appreciate it.

Maybe a dozen people on the trail, along Manning Camp and Heartbreak.
Named place
Named place
Mud Hole Spring - Mica


water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Devils Bathtub Quart per minute Quart per minute
Large pool above rock falls, dripping flow over the lip.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Manning Camp Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Amazing.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Miller Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
A few sad, scummy pools at the bottom.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Mud Hole Spring - Mica Dripping Dripping
A few pools deep enough to scoop from.

_____________________
1 archive
Mar 20 2021
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Powers GardenTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Backpack avatar Mar 20 2021
jacobemerick
Backpack25.73 Miles 5,215 AEG
Backpack25.73 Miles2 Days         
5,215 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Long, dark drive from San Tan Valley. Was pleasantly surprised to see that FR253 was recently graded, that plus a dry Aravaipa made it very easy to reach TH.

East Divide #287
Easy walking up the grassy lowlands with a few cairns to keep you moving forward. Everything looks toasted, even with the recent snows/rains. Passed what felt like a half-dozen signed junctions before reaching Mud Springs, bit of a maze to figure out at the start. Noticed something weird here that several of the other trails had - two treads that were not-quite-parallel, sometimes collapsing to a single track and other times devolving into game trails. Unsure if this is due to chatty cowbows or meandering livestock. Regardless, it had me backtracking many times throughout the weekend.

Sycamore Creek #278
Picked this up at Mud Springs, took a bit of wandering to find where it started. Recent maintenance and a few re-routes were appreciated. Once I reached the saddle by China Peak the trail plummeted down over steep switchbacks, and while the cairns were huge, the re-routed tread is hard to track. Once the trail hits the creek it does a very good job at sticking to the banks and cleaning hopping from one side to the other. There is some minor deadfall and overgrowth to navigate, and I chose to boulder-hop a few times, overall it was pretty fun.

Bumped into a large group of teenagers w/ chaperones who were hiking from Rattlesnake Canyon to Redfield over two weeks. Chatted for ten minutes, could have spent all day sharing stories, but we were heading in different directions and each had many miles to cover before nightfall. That was shortly before Sycamore Canyon Spring, and I spent much of the rest of the trail following tread high up the banks and trying to imagine how I'd fit two weeks worth of food in my tiny pack.

Powers Garden #96
Rattlesnake Creek was flowing happily, a nice change from the stagnant pools in Sycamore, which gave me (temporary) hope for water sources. Also, this trail was annoyingly well-maintained, recently trimmed back neatly and a small army of bootprints pounded into the tread. As there was no one at Powers Garden, my guess is that a crew had walked in from Rattlesnake Road and done some work on the trail or at the Garden, and then hiked out on Friday.

This was a very enjoyable section, with the big trees and views on each side. I passed Pipestem (signed), Mailbox (unsigned), and Tortilla (signed) junctions, and somewhere along the way my happy little creek completely dried up. Camping in the middle of a field of dead grass with a single liter of water didn't sound like fun, so I bailed my original plan (set up camp here and go hunting for the Mailbox spur) and decided to push forward instead. The rest of the trail to Corral Canyon seemed to drag, mostly because I kept veering into Rattlesnake Creek in hopes of finding a crystal-clear pool of water.

Corral Canyon #291
Bit more deadfall and overgrowth, and the creek crossings can be confusing, yet the tread is solid and was much better than expected. Followed it for a mile and found some trickling water, pulled to full capacity and backtracked a half-mile to a nice campsite.

Took my time setting up camp and getting some firewood for the night. I was expecting a cold night and wanted to glamp, even brought a little chair along. Managed to stay up until 8 before crashing, and then slept in the next morning. New sleeping pad was a real winner, probably got down to high 30s and kept warm. Woke up feeling wonderfully refreshed.

Tracking the creek crossings got a bit more difficult, and I did spend some time boulder-hopping. The one crossing that is truly important is right at Corral Spring, where (if you're heading uphill) you leave the south bank, backtrack downstream to the spring about twenty feet, and then head up the north bank. If you miss this, you'll end up at the bottom of a very formidable waterfall. Going up the north bank is a set of steep switchbacks with a few re-routes due to deadfall, which is something that you need to repeat near the end of the trail.

The final leg of the trail is on the top of a ridgeline, and this is where the burn comes in full. There's good tread, and a few cairns, and enough deadfall to turn the whole thing into a maze. Two nice campsites and a small stand of surviving pines wait at the end of the trail.

Kennedy Peak #287A
Short jaunt south on East Divide and a humble sign point to the peak, which is another maze of deadfall. There are plenty of cairns, though sections of the tread have been washed out. I lost the trail on both the hike up and down. Anyways, views on top were totally worth it - after spending yesterday on the grassy north side and in deep canyons, seeing the expansiveness of the wilderness was a moving moment.

East Divide #287
Return to the junction and then heading down over the million switchbacks. Snow was a minor issue, a few stretches where the narrow tread was covered in slick iciness that promised an quickened descent. Eventually the snow obstacles were replaced with deadfall, and then overgrowth kicked in. I didn't care too much - I was heading downhill and the trailhead felt within reach.

As soon as the junction to Mud Springs shows up the trail veers back onto grassy flatlands and makes a sizeable re-route to the south to avoid the deep tributaries of Oak Creek. At least, it was a re-route according to the route I had. Eventually the track swung north, joined with my route from yesterday, and I rolled back down to the trailhead.

dry Brush Canyon Dry Dry
Dry at mouth.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Corral Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
Dry at mouth. Trickling pools start to intermittently show up after 1 mile upstream.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Corral Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Water directly below the cement box.

dry Horse Canyon Dry Dry
Dry at mouth.

dry Mailbox Canyon Dry Dry
Dry at mouth.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Mud Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Spring box was full, trough was overflowing, downhill tank & trough were full. Cow corpse is still there fouling up trough overflow, but trough still seems clean enough.

dry Pipestem Canyon Dry Dry
Dry at mouth.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Powers Garden Spring Dripping Dripping
Two large, algae-clogged pools. Totally unappealing. Rattlesnake Creek was completely dry from Corral Creek to Pipestem, this spring did nothing to help that.

dry South Field Canyon Dry Dry
Dry at mouth.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Sycamore Canyon Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Several appealing pools trickling, plenty to pull from.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Sycamore Creek Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
Handful of sad pools, mostly between spring & mouth.
_____________________
Feb 27 2021
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Black Ridge Loop - MazatzalPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 27 2021
jacobemerick
Hiking7.52 Miles 1,915 AEG
Hiking7.52 Miles   6 Hrs   33 Mns   1.47 mph
1,915 ft AEG   1 Hour   27 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Hike w/ kids. Started twenty minutes after sunrise with temps in the high 20s. Took road first, then the big climb, which felt good to do with the chill air and waking sun. Trail is well-defined going up that ridge. Plenty of forks to choose from on top, had to check gps a few times. Brunson made for a good play spot, upper sheep spring was a bust. Some interesting corrals further down the creek, worth exploring more if I didn’t have kids on this trip. They dragged on the climb out, but perked up when they saw the trail quality change on LSM and were straight up giddy with the trickling water and little waterfalls. New TH looks fantastic.

Been wanting to do this hike w/ kids for a few years, probably waited the right amount. 4yo did struggle with the rough sections and distance, this was right at her limit.
Named place
Named place
Saddle Mountain 6,535

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Brunson Tank 26-50% full 26-50% full

dry Upper Sheep Creek Spring Dry Dry
One sad pool spotted above marked spring.
_____________________
Feb 21 2021
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Reavis - Frog Tanks - Rogers Loop, AZ 
Reavis - Frog Tanks - Rogers Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 21 2021
jacobemerick
Hiking33.93 Miles 5,540 AEG
Hiking33.93 Miles   14 Hrs   8 Mns   2.70 mph
5,540 ft AEG   1 Hour   34 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Drove through 2 open gates along AZ-88 (from the Roosevelt side) until I bumped into the block at Apache Lake. There is a small open gate on it, far too narrow for a vehicle, with a sign allowing hiking/biking/horse/atv traffic. Looks fairly permanent.

After parking at the Apache Lake Vista around 5am, swung into the first wash past the blocked AZ-88 and followed Joes (or Wallys?) route cross country. I left the wash too early and was forced to a nearby ridge, which was no fun to navigate in the dark. Took around 40m and definitely warmed me up in the chill morning air. I think I'd rather start earlier and stick to the road on the way up if I do another pre-dawn hike out here. Trailhead was missing the register and a few signs :cry:

Reavis Ranch #109
Fantastic trail to walk in the dark. Some washouts along the way, all easy to hop over. The day gradually waking up over the hills was heckin' beautiful. Castle Dome ridge section had some more serious washouts and overgrowth, nothing a little TLC can't fix. Fire damage got real near Windy Saddle.

Plow Saddle #287
Lack of signed junction and cairns, coupled with fire-damaged tread, made this tough to find, but once it drops off the saddle it is very easy to follow. More fire damage, a few deadfall to work around, and the loosey steepness was annoying. It was sad to see the scorched cottonwoods in that drainage, not sure if any survived.

Frog Tanks #112
Started with a lot of catclaw, which is more bearable past the 4937' ridge. That drop into Fish Creek is just dreamy, huge views. Explored a little by the stone corral before attempting to continue on the trail, which was super tough. Lots of fire damage, lots of catclaw. After fifteen minutes of cursing, bleeding, and crying, I dropped into the creek and stuck to boulder-hopping, which, combined with the trickling water, was incredibly enjoyable. Slow going, but enjoyable. A mile in and the green canopy came back to the canyon and I was in heaven.

Rogers Canyon #110
Looked a bit for the trail and then just kept in the creek. I was initially disappointed by the lack of trickling water, though the huge boulders and surrounding geology made up for the (mostly) dry creekbed. Started to feel a little toasty by the time I reached Angel Basin, and even though I got to meet @Andrewrdc (hi!) I didn't linger long at the ruins, more interested in powering through than looking at rocks on rocks. Trail was super easy to follow upstream of the ruins, passed three groups on the way in. Fire damage showed up again for the last mile.

Reavis Ranch #109
This trail again, this time from end-to-end. Paused for a quick break and then powered up that darn climb, passing another three or four groups on their way out. Was sad to see how scorched the saddle got. Trees began to come back about a mile in, and from then on the damage was sporadic in the valley and mostly visible on the nearby hillsides. Trail was in great shape until AZT branches off (no surprise), then there were a few minor obstacles on the way back to Plow Saddle. Sun set about 20m before I hit trailhead.

Decided to stick to the wash on the way down, which was hard for five minutes and then a simple cruise. Outside of the peeps on Rogers and a few along Reavis (between the grave and valley) there was no other hikers out there. A long, quiet, and fantastic day.
Culture
Culture
HAZ PicMimic

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Paradise Canyon Light flow Light flow
Steady and dependable flow along the length of Frog Tanks Trail.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Plow Saddle Springs Dripping Dripping
Drainage was dripping, several deep pools to pull from.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Reavis Creek at Fireline #118 Light flow Light flow
Steady, happy little flow.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Reavis Saddle Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Steady flow from spring all along the length of trail.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Rogers Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
Dry at mouth. Some pools / trickles along the length.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Rough Canyon Light flow Light flow
Steady flow coming out of the mouth.
_____________________
Feb 15 2021
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Battleship Mountain - SuperstitionsPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 15 2021
jacobemerick
Hiking11.80 Miles 2,100 AEG
Hiking11.80 Miles
2,100 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Hike w/ boys and family (@reynchr @kirsty). Left TH at 6am to give the boys a taste of night hiking, made good time to Garden Valley and watched the sunrise before @reynchr had to turn around early for an unexpected work distraction. We continued onto Boulder Canyon with few issues and made it to the spur trail around 10am. Hauled up and spent some time right below the stern, trying to plan a way to help the 6yo and 7yo up safely up that wall, then decided it wasn't worth the risk. Chastised, we headed back the way we came, seeing a surprising number of people on the return. Still a good way to spend the holiday, v thankful to @kirsty for being such a help with the kiddos on the long day.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Second Water Canyon Light flow Light flow
Great flow crossing trail, plenty of deep pools all the way to Boulder Canyon.
_____________________
3 archives
Jan 31 2021
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Keyhole ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 31 2021
jacobemerick
Hiking3.16 Miles 352 AEG
Hiking3.16 Miles   2 Hrs   10 Mns   1.54 mph
352 ft AEG      7 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Hike w/ kids. Wanted a short jaunt in AJ before visiting grandparents, this fit the bill and had a lot more solitude than my usual gotos from First Water area. Route was a mix of dirt road and motorbike singletrack and horse trail and wash... The desert is crisscrossed with options (and has a lot of litter) so close to a trailhead. Kids were well-behaved and sure-footed after such a long lapse since our last outing, they earned their ice cream after this one. Keyhole Arch was half-walled off and there was signs of a campfire in it... maybe someone spent a cold night huddled in there recently? Okay area, think we need to venture a few more miles in from this trailhead to get to the good stuff.
_____________________
Dec 10 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Hackberry Spring from Horse LotPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 10 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking2.12 Miles 298 AEG
Hiking2.12 Miles   1 Hour   41 Mns   1.33 mph
298 ft AEG      5 Mns Break
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Hike w/ fam. Wanted to get everyone out and enjoy the meteorological events. Started at Horse Lot, followed road over to track down to First Water Ranch, then took creek over to the usual tributary back up to Horse Lot. Muddy trails and a few puddles, creek had plenty of tanks for the kids to splash in. Clouds rolling over the Ridgeline and the usual post-rain epic sunset made for a nice backdrop. Only one other family out there and they stuck close to the new Hackberry trail. Lots of vehicles at Massacre Falls TH.
_____________________
Dec 05 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Red Tanks Super Loop - Peralta THPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 05 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking21.30 Miles 2,923 AEG
Hiking21.30 Miles   9 Hrs   14 Mns   3.09 mph
2,923 ft AEG   2 Hrs   20 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
The chance to walk three burn areas in one loop? Sure, why not.

Five cars at Peralta TH at 5:30am. Didn't see any camps along my route, maybe they all went to Charlebois. Cardiac Hill is a great way to keep warm on cold December mornings. Ridgeline Fire burned chunks of Bluff Springs trail, was hard to follow the trail in the dark through Barks. Stopped by Bluff Spring, pipe is broken but still trickling higher up. Forest above the pipe saw heavy damage, wonder if the hill / spring will sustain in the years to come.

Final drop into La Barge was chilly. La Barge Spring is still flowing like a champ. Trees within the creekbed are all fine, anything up on the banks got burned in Sawtooth and are falling over, some of the campsites on the eastern bank are unsafe / covered in deadfall. Took a quick break here to munch on some snacks and shiver before continuing on Red Tanks, which seemed to be in relatively good condition.

Climbing Upper La Barge is just straight fun. Woodbury damage was very apparent at top, the whole slope coming down Coffee Flat is a lot less green now. Some patches of living forest here and there within the creek. Grass is coming back strong and looks quite flammable. Paused at Red Tanks Divide for a luxurious coffee break and got buzzed by the B-52? that frequents the area.

The heat finally kicked in during the descent. Some bad burn sections with deadfall / tread washout that caused mild confusion, mostly it's just a well-trod grassy path still. I was getting impatient by the time I reached Randolph and spent most of the time walking the creek. While polishing off my water at Reed's a large squadron of javelina strolled past, at least 30 of them, and I got some amateur video of the ridiculously cute reds trotting behind parents.

Saw three groups, two backpacking between the Divide and Coffee Flat, last one dayhiking in Barkley. Only sighted 17 monoliths, so this is still a pretty remote area.
Culture
Culture
Ghost?

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Barks Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
One sad, lonely pool.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Bluff Spring Dripping Dripping
Steady trickle. Pipe has broken so once you find it, follow it up until you smell the stagnant water.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Fraser Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
Dripping Wall was dripping. Would take a while to collect enough to drink.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max LaBarge Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Dependable.

dry Randolph Canyon Dry Dry
Bone dry from Reed's to Red Tanks junction.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Red Tanks Canyon Light flow Light flow
Several tanks of water above Randolph Canyon confluence.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Reeds Water 26-50% full 26-50% full
Well had water. Some boards have fallen into well, it'd be challenging to snake down a bucket / cup.

dry Trap Canyon Dry Dry
Dry at crossing.

dry Upper LaBarge Box Canyon Dry Dry
Dry at trail crossing.
_____________________
1 archive
Nov 26 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Little Chance Canyon LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 26 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking2.95 Miles 389 AEG
Hiking2.95 Miles   2 Hrs   1 Min   1.58 mph
389 ft AEG      9 Mns Break
 
no photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Pre-turkey stroll with kids. Saw only one other car in parking lot, there were two groups within Willow Springs Canyon on the way out, overall very quiet and peaceful. Only water seen was at Willow Spring. Kids enjoyed the cool temps and had a bit too much fun rock climbing whenever possible, and I kept busy plucking them off of ledges when things got too steep.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Willow Spring Dripping Dripping
Several wet spots within the creek, few deep pools that were surprisingly not-skunky-looking.
_____________________
Nov 08 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Garden Valley - Hackberry LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 08 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking5.98 Miles 753 AEG
Hiking5.98 Miles   3 Hrs   55 Mns   1.67 mph
753 ft AEG      20 Mns Break
 
no photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Been a minute since I took the kids out to First Water area, and with the nice weather we decided to go for a (longer than normal) loop to include some burnt-area viewing. Started at Horse Lot, took Dutchman to First Water TH (avoiding the road walk), then headed up to Garden Valley the normal way. Lots of burn along the way, only real green stretch was on the actual climb up Garden Valley. Anyways, dropped down to Hackberry the back way, had a candy break at the spring before circling back to Horse Lot. LOTS of people... maybe two dozen groups in all? Felt more like a Somo hike than Supes. All were friendly, some were masks, and a few were lost because they were using AllTrails. My kids might be a little excited about the election results and were proudly exclaiming the results to everyone, which only got awkward once :sweat:


water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Hackberry Spring Dripping Dripping
Still overflowing (a bit), one decent puddle in the creek downstream.
_____________________
Oct 11 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Weaver's Needle Loop from Peralta THPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 11 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking12.65 Miles 2,832 AEG
Hiking12.65 Miles   5 Hrs   1 Min   2.85 mph
2,832 ft AEG      35 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Quick morning adventure in the Supes. Left parking lot after 5am, one of only 3 vehicles. Climb up to Peralta was pleasant, turned off headlamp a half-mile from summit. Sad views north of the burned valley. Peralta Trail north of the saddle had a few minor washouts for the first bit and plenty of surrounding char on the first 1.5 miles, then it returned to the normal brown/green. The tree tunnel is still there :) Lost Dutchman from Peralta :next: Terrapin is normal, some claw-y overgrowth. Burn area shows up again on Terrapin, much of that trail has been toasted. Two deadfall in the little Needle Canyon drop - I cleared one, the other is more substantial - though I suspect more may fall in the coming months. Escaped the burn area after the Bluff Springs junction. Only saw 3 other groups on the trail, all on Bluff Springs within a mile of the parking lot, which was quite full on return. Clockwise was the way to go today to avoid the crowds.

No water in sight, though I didn't veer too far to look. Talked to some backpackers who said Bluff Springs was dry, though when I asked about a rusty pipe they looked confused, so I think we may have been thinking about two different springs.
_____________________
Oct 09 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Shoshone Point TrailNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 09 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking2.00 Miles 269 AEG
Hiking2.00 Miles
269 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Played tourist in the Grand Canyon with the kiddos. Drove up the night before and camped in the Kaibab off of 180. Entered park on Friday and headed straight to Shoshone (which was not marked from 64), saw four or five other groups of hikers on the trail, none at the point itself. We ventured all the way out to the very tip of the point, though there was a lot of hand-holding and butt-sliding to keep my stress levels down... The 5yo was being especially defiant on this trip. After that shaded hike we also hit up Grandview and went down about a quarter mile on the trail, just so they could brag that they were 'in the canyon'. Too many people and too much exposure here to feel comfortable so we quickly headed out. Thought about continuing on to Hull Cabin next and instead opted for a scenic drive back to Phoenix through Sedona. The sheer amount of people out on Friday, both at the main attractions (GC village, SK trailhead) and along 89A, was v shocking, and I think we'll be sticking to more remote areas for the next flu few months.
_____________________
Oct 04 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Miners Needle LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 04 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking9.14 Miles 1,725 AEG
Hiking9.14 Miles   3 Hrs   13 Mns   2.89 mph
1,725 ft AEG      3 Mns Break
 
no photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Originally had hoped to do Peralta Trail :next: Cave Trail loop, but when the forest closure extended this week I decided to go with this alternative. Hiked the first two miles in the dark with @reynchr, it was good catching up with him. At 6AM he turned around and I continued, jogging a few sections, increasingly saddened by the burn destruction as the sun lit it up around me. The saddle was in better shape, though dropping down on the other side was just more burn. It did feel good to be back in the Supes and see Bluff Springs Mountain, Malapais, Tortilla, etc all lit up by the morning light. Trail was in good shape even through the burn sections. Some new spiky growth plus the sharpened tips of burned brittlebush had me regretting shorts, got some productive cuts on my lower calves. Returned to a half-full parking lot, most of which had to be on Peralta, as there was only one other group on Bluff Springs Trail.
_____________________
Sep 25 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Rim to RimNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 25 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking44.50 Miles 11,000 AEG
Hiking44.50 Miles1 Day      50 Mns   
11,000 ft AEG   4 Hrs   30 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Been dreaming of this hike for the last five years, decided about a week ago that I'd make a go at it. Kirsty and I camped at Long Jim the night before so I could get a whole two hours of sleep, we dropped off my car in Lot D, and she gave me a ride over to SK trailhead. She would later hike BA down to the river, chill for a few hours, and we'd hike up together.

1220 Stepped off the rim onto SK trail. Bit later than desired, didn't realize the road to the TH would be gated in the morning. The wind was heckin' strong, kicking up a ton of eye-stinging mule dust, threatening to push me off the ridge sections like a lone dandelion seed. Stars were pretty and trail felt great.

0200 Reached Tip-Off, paused for a snack and to change into shorts. It was hot down here! Little shelter creaked weirdly in the wind. Rest of the drop was steep and fun, swinging back and forth on all those little switchbacks above Black Bridge. Couldn't see the river from the bridge. Phantom Ranch took forever to show up, didn't remember how to reach the Canteen and water, took some wandering.

0310 Filled water to full capacity and forced some more calories in. Then it was off to The Box and new terrain. Darkness was starting to get a bit tedious so I popped some earbuds in and listened to spooky podcasts to pass the time. Bumped into a few hikers along this section, one other R2R2R group who came from BA last night and then some early runners coming down from NK. Otherwise pretty quiet. Sun began to light things up around Ribbon Falls.

0630 Manzanita Rest, stopped here to prep for the climb (last water until the rim, Supai is off until next year). 3 groups of backpackers here coming up from Cottonwood, none looked too happy. The climb felt surprisingly good, as it was mostly in the shade and all new terrain, though the loose sand on the top two miles were not welcome. More people here, lots of hikers dropping down to Supai or Redwall before heading back up.

0930 North Rim. Long break here to rearrange gear, water up, and eat some sardines. Was cold on the rim, soon as I was back on the (now) sun-bathed trail it heated up. Dropping down was really cool, enjoyed the terrain a lot more this time, the half-tunnels through Redwall are amazing. Rangers were also up now and I got scolded (rightfully so) about doing this solo.

1220 Back at Manzanita. The furnace was alive and cooking and I soaked my shirt. Few slow-moving groups at the rest area, most people were already on the Rim or at a campsite by now. The next few hours of trail crawled and I switched to march mode, enjoying the big views and empty trail while I rushed along. Stopped a few times to keep water uptake in. The Box was my favorite part, as half of it was in shade, and the winding creek kept things exciting.

1530 Mandatory lemonade break at the Ranch, quick water fill, and then continued on. I wasn't feeling tired and wanted to push it up BA. Kirsty had left the River Resthouse over an hour ago and the plan was to meet at the Garden, bumped into her about a mile before and slowed my pace. We caught up on our different adventures over the day.

1815 Indian Garden and a long break. Few other hikers passed through on various adventures in various states of fatigue. Once the sun was down we headed out with headlamps. Going up was very slow, this was Kirsty's biggest hike for a while, so we took our time and many little breaks. Gave ourselves healthy pauses at each rest stop to stretch and water up. There wasn't much to see in the dark except for one fearless Bighorn who stood their ground 10' off trail.

0115 Finally hit the Rim. Jogged over to the car, we headed back to Long Jim, and totally crashed. Woke up at some point on Saturday and drove home before the DOMS hit.

Miscellaneous Packed 5000 calories, ate 4000, burned over 7000. Lots of caffeine via Nuuns and Gus, never bonked, only felt fatigue on the last few hours when the pace slowed. Drank... 16L, about half w/ electrolytes? I usually drink a lot during long hikes, this was on par for the effort. First time using trail runners and loved them.

There was a high degree of capabilities on display in the Canyon - few 60+ yos knocking out sub-8 R2Rs, R2R2R attempts that were turning into 2- or 3- day ordeals, and even a few pukers. Biggest thing that helped me, and that I'd advise anyone doing this hike, is to have a Plan B and a support group. I mentally checked-in a few times, especially at Cottonwood and Manzanita, to determine if it made sense to turn around early, and kept constant comms via inReach w/ family, who were making sure I was making my preset milestones and not burning out. :heart:
_____________________
1 archive
Sep 04 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Intro to Blue, AZ 
Intro to Blue, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Sep 04 2020
jacobemerick
Backpack56.85 Miles 10,461 AEG
Backpack56.85 Miles3 Days         
10,461 ft AEG9.8 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
First time to the Blue. Out of laziness admiration I simply copy/pasted FOTG's earlier trip this year and stuck to the trails.

Day 1
Caught a few hours of sleep before cruising down Steeple/Upper Grant Creek. Upper Grant was okay, intermittent tread with a few obstacles, travel was slower than expected. Swung over on Paradise and gawked over the hints of big views through the trees before connecting with Grant Creek. Grant Creek served as a dividing line for complete devastation and untouched pines for awhile before succumbing to the burn and wandering sadly through a field of ferns.

Stopped at White Oak Spring to spook a buck and flock of turkeys (and filter some water) before tumbling down the rest of Grant Creek Trail. The exposure was hot and my poorly-fitting boots were starting to annoy me, so when I reached the creek itself and saw more signs of burn damage (flood damage and young, greedy growth) I rushed forward and crashed at the trailhead. Bottom of the Blue felt like a darn furnace after the cooler, shaded mountains above.

A hot, dusty forest road did a great job at burning through my water and I was very thankful to find Lanphier Creek flowing at the Largo junction. Trudged uphill on Largo, enjoying the little park beyond the first ridge and Dutch Oven area and mostly cursing my boots. Found some interesting pens that seemed to be protecting the source of Largo Creek, though they were all opened, and the wildlife had obviously been digging deep to find water here this summer. Crested and dropped along the Little Blue Trail to find a very talkative man camping at Bear Valley for a few weeks with his mules, ended up camping at a nice tent pad another half mile on his suggestion.

Day 2
Woke early and hobbled along the rest of the Little Blue, admiring the geologic structures by the twin light of mostly-full moon and slowly-waking sun. Cut over on 609 (which was labeled Horse Mountain Connector by a sign), which was faint yet easy, before bumping into Cow Flat. This trail was fantastic and won the Trail of the Day award. It has variety, several awesome rest spots, and very creative construction. There was also little shade and rolly rocks and catclaw, but hey, this is Arizona.

Aside: there was a feed bag at Ladrone Spring, within a few feet of the campfire ring. This seems bad.

The furnace was alive and kicking when I entered the wide riverbed of the Blue River, and between that and the intermittent trail and the sand and the rock-hopping on sore feet, the next three hours were No Fun. The flow itself was dark and silty, and the tributaries were mostly dry, so I had to filter the questionable river and hope that the aftertaste was 'charm'. When I exited the trail I was immediately yelled at by the landowner who claims there is no way to reach the northern trailhead without trespassing. Anyways, reached Cole Flat by 2pm, thought about heading up Steeple, looked at the gathering storm clouds above and my stupid boots below, and crashed. The next few hours were a delightful mix of reading in a hammock, munching on snacks, and napping in the tent under the patter and rumble of storms that most of Arizona seems to have missed out on this year.

Day 3
Another early start. Yesterday's extra rest proved well worth it, as I was able to zip up the first few miles of Steeple quickly, not letting the sun touch me until I was on KP Mesa. This trail was in great shape and I trotted along easily, enjoying the big views. Mud Spring was totally dry so I pushed on to the next marked spring on the topo to water up. My original plan was to cut over on Paradise and retrace Upper Grant Creek, but the thought of cutting a few miles and completing Lee & Katie's full loop was tempting, so I stuck to Steeple.

That drainage lasted an eternity. Every hundred yards or so there'd be a long patch of locusts to push through, and there was deadfall too, but I only lost the trail once, so I was happy about the condition. The sun and lack of wind were the real pain points on this section - otherwise, this trail is in no worse shape than some of the nightmares in the Mazatzal or Sierra Ancha. I crested in two hours and cruised the final miles happily, already planning future revisits.
Flora
Flora
New Mexico Locust
Fauna
Fauna
Bighorn Sheep

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Auger Tank 51-75% full 51-75% full

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Bear Valley Cabin Spring Dripping Dripping

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Bear Valley Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Great pools for filtering.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Dutch Oven Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Happy little trough.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Grant Creek Light flow Light flow
Flowing along most of the last few miles of trail, only drying up for the final mile.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max KP Creek Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Ladron Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Lanphier Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
Dry at mount, flowing at Largo Trail junction.

dry Mud Spring Dry Dry
Spring was dry, creek was dry. Did not venture down creek of topo locale. Springs another half mile upstream had several pools of water.

dry Raspberry Creek Dry Dry


dry Tornado Canyon Dry Dry

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max White Oak Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Both tanks were overflowing.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Willow Spring Dripping Dripping
Muddy pools of water below the trail.
_____________________
Aug 14 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 14 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking11.10 Miles 1,183 AEG
Hiking11.10 Miles   9 Hrs   40 Mns   1.39 mph
1,183 ft AEG   1 Hour   42 Mns Break
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Hike w/ kiddos. Camped along FR 150 on Thursday evening, found a nice spot with a campfire ring so we could enjoy some s'mores before the fire restrictions take effect. Woke up the next morning, packed up, drove a short distance and started on the trail west of KA Hill, there's no trailhead here but I wanted to do the loop CCW and get the hill out of the way first thing, so just found a spot to pull off the road near the trail crossing. Climb up the hill was slow and steady, 5yo had big feelings, eventually we reached the summit and had our first of seven thousand breaks. Downhill went better and we reached the logging camp and creek without much hassle. Creek was very dry except for 2 or 3 ponds, which was a real bummer, because the kids really like playing with water, and I didn't want them tossing rocks into a small pond that a lot of animals were likely depending on. Anyways, they liked the big canyon views, especially Vista Point, and we saw some climbers at the fork, which is always cool. The heat and dryness were a lot and the last few miles through Pomeroy was a slog. There was much rejoicing when we got back to the Jeep with ice water and cool snacks. Trail is in great shape, area is pretty (if dry and hot), and we only saw two groups of hikers on the trail.
Named place
Named place
Pomeroy Tanks

dry Double Tanks Dry Dry

dry Dow Spring Dry Dry
Spring area was dry. Sitting pools of water a few hundred yards down the drainage.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Isham Spring Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
Some small pools below the normal area.

dry L O Spring Dry Dry
Spring area was dry. Sitting pools of water a few hundred yards down the drainage.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Pomeroy Tanks 51-75% full 51-75% full
Multiple large pools, not much trickle in between.
_____________________
Aug 08 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Little Chance Canyon LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Canyoneering avatar Aug 08 2020
jacobemerick
Canyoneering3.00 Miles 422 AEG
Canyoneering3.00 Miles
422 ft AEG
 
no photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Hike w/ kiddos. Met grandparents in the lot for a socially-distant outing, only two other vehicles in lot at 6am. Same route as last time, did loop clockwise, lot drier compared to last March, still pretty. Few cool spots in the canyon in between the sweat-fests. One rattler in Last Chance that had my 7yo screaming like a stuck hyena. Played a little bit in the caves by Willow Spring. A nice way to spend a morning.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Willow Spring Dripping Dripping
Seeping out for a short distance, clean water, lots of bees competing for a drink.
_____________________
Jul 11 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Mt Baldy Super Loop, AZ 
Mt Baldy Super Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jul 11 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking30.11 Miles 4,425 AEG
Hiking30.11 Miles   11 Hrs   25 Mns   3.20 mph
4,425 ft AEG   2 Hrs    Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Felt a bit bummed after last weekend's failed backpack attempt w/ kids, trying to split the typical Mt Baldy Loop into 3 days, so decided to head back and do it as a solo day hike. Was inspired by @lindaann, @joebartels, and @tortoise_hiker's route. Camped along FR 409 in order to get an early start, parked car at West Fork TH at 4am and had a pleasant moonlit hike through downtown Greer to start the day.

East Fork #95
Was faced by a few different forks right at the river crossing, rolled a die and headed up the correct one. Was nice to get this little climb knocked out in the predawn. Passed a few interesting signed spurs (Amberon Point, Scenic Loop), stuck to the main trail, hoping to get healthy distance before sunrise. Spooked a large herd of elk at the top, right at the fenceline. Made it to the Marble Spring area for a fantastic sunrise. Pleasant stroll through chilly meadows and small stands of pines, saw more elk and deer along the way. Trail is in great shape and easy to follow, only got confused once near Colter where the singletrack forks for a quarter mile before rejoining. Picked up a water cache at FR 409 before cutting over to Gabaldon Camp.

East Baldy #95
Utilized the camp trail before joining the 'main' route. Didn't do a lot of research on this trail, leaning into the unknown, was surprised at how much pine forest it went through (compared to West Baldy's meadows). Passed one campsite and a few slower backpackers, overall pretty quiet on the trail. The hoodoo overlook was cool, the exposed flanks were cool, the crash site was cool... This is a solid, enjoyable trail, less than a dozen deadfall to deal with, I was just getting tired at this point. Paused for a few more breaks than necessary to enjoy the area. Reached the saddle and did a quick dance towards the summit, just to be scared away by quickly-growing storm in the west.

West Baldy #94
Nice to walk downhill. The burn area was sad to walk through, though it did give good views of the West Fork meadow below. Quickly made it to the meadows and the trail began to get congested, lots of in-and-back hikers down here to skip around. Filtered up before the Crossover Trail (should have left a second water cache). Last mile dragged, didn't expect that little elevation and forest before trailhead.

West Fork #94
Swung over to culvert on the start of this (thanks @lindaann), then slowly strolled across the open meadow. Was definitely feeling the miles at this point and stopped for a lengthy rest. This trail felt much rougher than the other ones - more rocky sections, more annoying deadfall, and a few eroded spots - though I'll admit I was also feeling grumpy and sore, so... grain of salt. Views across West Fork were nice and I picked out different landmarks from the morning's hike. Also, that little drop before passing 9375', plus the spring box on the round, were enjoyable. Got a little sprinkle for the last mile, enough to soak me through right before getting back to the Jeep.
Fauna
Fauna
Elk

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Colter Reservoir 26-50% full 26-50% full
Didn't look that full, but there was still a healthy flow below.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Marble Spring Dripping Dripping
Didn't see actual spring, but there were puddles visible downhill from trail.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Mount Baldy Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Decent flow, but it'd be challenging to collect.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Potatoe Hollow Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Overflowing, ground was saturated. Pipe makes for easy access if one didn't want to scoop from the trough.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Trail Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Trail Spring Tank 76-100% full 76-100% full
Overflowing.


water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max West Fork Little Colorado River Medium flow Medium flow
Good flow, definitely need to use the footbridge to cross.
_____________________
Jul 05 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
West Baldy Backpack, AZ 
West Baldy Backpack, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Jul 05 2020
jacobemerick
Backpack12.00 Miles 1,500 AEG
Backpack12.00 Miles2 Days         
1,500 ft AEG40 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Backpack w/ kiddos. Arrived at East TH around 10am and headed over to Crossover Trail. Route was easy to walk and went through some ridiculously beautiful meadows, some of them with water trickling through. Reached West Baldy, quick break at river before turning west. Only got a mile in before the 7yo started complaining about his (new) boots. There was no way we'd be able to do full loop so we stopped for camp early, giving them a solid four hours before sunset to play in the water, get dirty, hit rocks with other rocks, and be kids. Backtracked out the next morning, returning just after noon, and then set out on the long drive home.

Saw maybe two dozen groups on the trails, mostly day hikers doing shorter sections of the trails (not the full loop).
Culture
Culture
Campsite
_____________________
3 archives
Jun 12 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 74
 Photos 1,079
 Triplogs 142

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
East Cabin Loop, AZ 
East Cabin Loop, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Jun 12 2020
jacobemerick
Backpack17.80 Miles 2,600 AEG
Backpack17.80 Miles2 Days         
2,600 ft AEG40 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
First backpack with kiddos. Car-camped Thursday evening on 321C, great night sleep to the sound of coyotes yipping away down at some spring. Headed up U-Bar on Friday morning with frequent breaks along the way to rest short legs, including an entire hour at Barbershop Canyon for Mac 'n Cheese lunch and crawfish hunting. Afternoon sun and distance began to wear on them over the next few hours, and it was real struggle to reach Aspen Spring for camp. Another great night, one minor elk interruption that spooked the littlest, and we got moving early and knocked out the rest of Houston Brother Trail with no issue. The roller coaster of Barbershop Trail exhausted them and, when we eventually reached the Jeep, there was great rejoicing. Oh, and the loop had dozens and dozens of deadfall, most of which would not bother most hikers but are sizable obstacles for kids.

Crowds: six groups on Friday, only 4 on Saturday, was expecting more up there.
Gear that absolutely did not work: wag bag. 3 growing kids quickly overpowered any sort of odor protection. Next time I'm just bringing a trowel. Ugh.
General ponder: been working on distance with them this year and, while it paid off, 18m over two days was too much. Think I need to revisit our gear (my 65L was overflowing with their tent/sleeping bags/pad) and pack more food so we can slow down. Three days for this loop would have been a lot more enjoyable for them.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Aspen Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Barbershop canyon creek Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Barbershop Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Coyote Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Dane Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Pinchot Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
_____________________
average hiking speed 2 mph
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