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125 triplogs

Jul 11 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

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 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

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 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

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
_____________________
Jun 05 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Derrick - Horton LoopPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Jun 05 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking12.02 Miles 2,068 AEG
Hiking12.02 Miles   7 Hrs   41 Mns   1.65 mph
2,068 ft AEG      25 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/ kiddos. Parked at Derrick TH, attempted to follow Tonto Creek to Horton TH, got brushed/cliffed out quickly. Should have just stuck to the road. Eventually found a way through the campsite to the Horton Creek Trail. First time here, stuck to the main route and avoided the creek paths, next time I'll slow down and let the kids play with the water some more. About 8 groups along the way. Spring was spectacular and much more than expected. One big deadfall south of spring on Highline Trail, rest of that trail was jaw-dropping views and a real rollercoaster. This was my first time on Highline and I'm already dreaming of thru-hiking it. Lots of cloud cover, some sprinkles, some thunder, great temps. Derrick was also a treat, with those giant manzanitas and old school junipers, though the steep rocky downhill gave my kids a few spills. This loop is an absolute gem, especially on a weekday, didn't see a soul after Horton.

Longest/hardest trip so far for the kids (6, 5, and 3), tested a few pieces of gear, think we're ready to try some backpacks in the near future!
Flora
Flora
Manzanita
Named place
Named place
Mazatzal Mountains

dry East Fork Horton Creek Dry Dry
Dry at Highline crossing.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Horton Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
_____________________
May 16 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Isabella LoopPrescott, AZ
Prescott, AZ
Hiking avatar May 16 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking8.98 Miles 1,995 AEG
Hiking8.98 Miles   6 Hrs   17 Mns   1.57 mph
1,995 ft AEG      33 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 kiddos. Slept in, didn't reach the TH until 9am, was still an enjoyable 65 at the empty trailhead. Trail was absolutely beautiful and well-maintained. Lunch at picnic area before hitting the summit. Drop along Groom Creek was quite steep, kid #2 had two big faceplants in the first five minutes and required some emotional first-aid. Connector was overgrown and had some of deadfall to work around, though it was totally worth it, as it had the only running water for the kids to play with and some of the best vantages of the hike. Descent down the leg of the lasso was painless and we celebrated with some concrete mixers before tackling the drive home.

Covid Crowd Report
About a dozen groups on the way to Spruce Mountain. Peak was crowded, we didn't spend much time there. Two groups descending down Groom Creek, no one on connector, and three groups descending Isabella. Everyone was super friendly, especially the handful of mountain bikers. I like Prescott.
_____________________
May 09 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Mount Lemmon Summit, AZ 
Mount Lemmon Summit, AZ
 
Hiking avatar May 09 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking28.93 Miles 7,679 AEG
Hiking28.93 Miles   14 Hrs   14 Mns   2.39 mph
7,679 ft AEG   2 Hrs   9 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
First time to the sky islands. Loved it.

Romero Canyon #8
As noted in the description, this trail is extremely well-defined through the state park, shrinks down to a singletrack on the way up to the pools, and gets harder to follow above. It was never bad, just a few deadfall and overgrowth to duck around for the last mile or two. Pools were pretty, views were amazing, and even the thicker vegetation at the top of the canyon was enjoyable. More than the advertised 6 miles.

Mount Lemmon #5
This was the point that my legs began to realize what the day's plan was, and they weren't happy about it. Trail was heckin' steep, especially the exposed part, and it wasn't until I entered the pines that this was enjoyable. The rock cliffs ahead and Cathedral Rock behind make up for the pain.

Wilderness of Rock #44
This little valley is a gem. First half jaw-dropping rock & pine views, second half the pines took over. I stopped three times, twice to pull water, and enjoyed the cool temps (clouds and rain during this section) and scenery. I wanna go back.

Aspen #93
First half was a mix of burn and pine, second half was all burn. Lots of re-routing, lots and lots of new switchbacks compared to the posted track. Wasn't as steep as I feared, likely thanks to the thousand switchbacks. I didn't mind, my legs were gassed by this point.

Mount Lemmon Summit
Views were nice, as was Quartzite Spring. Crowds not so much. Found a quiet spot to eat second lunch and quickly moved on.

Sutherland #6
Yeah, missed the part about this trail not being maintained. I was expecting a gentle auto-pilot descent and... that's not what you get. First mile is easy. Next miles is okay, not great. Third mile is just painful and I hates it. Last few miles had some real gems and is enjoyable. Then it's onto miles of old, rocky two-track followed by state park singletrack, and auto-pilot kicks in. I think descending is the way to go (get to enjoy the views more, when you aren't head-scratching, looking for the least-wrong way down), though my knees weren't thrilled with that grade.

Covid Crowd Report
Three groups on Romero, all before Old Camp. At least a dozen in Wilderness of Rocks, two camping, some of the groups quite large (5-6 peeps). Mount Lemmon summit was one big crowd, overflowing parking lots, etc. Probably another dozen on Mount Lemmon/Sutherland, that loop (Lemmon :next: WoR :next: Aspen || Lookout) must be a popular one. Zero people on Sutherland after the junction, at least until the state park.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Cascade Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Trail was soaked, churned to mud by traffic. You'd have to go below trail to pull anything usable. Skip this and continue to Quartzite.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Lemmon Creek @ WOR #44 Medium flow Medium flow
Nice wide flow at crossing, counted at least... eight? other places along this trail to pull water.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Old Trail Camp Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Quartzite Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
Pipe was gushing. Water was cold and amazing.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Romero Pools Medium flow Medium flow
_____________________
Apr 26 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Rock Creek Trail #195 - SuperstitionsGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 26 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking4.51 Miles 405 AEG
Hiking4.51 Miles   4 Hrs   8 Mns   1.35 mph
405 ft AEG      48 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/ kiddos. Early start had the kids begging for a sweater at the trailhead. Turned out to be a good idea, as the canyon held onto the cool temps for a few hours, and I was the fool shivering in a short-sleeve for the first half of the hike. Anyways, West Pinto was great (only needed to help the 3yo on a few steep sections), Bull Basin was just fun (so many creek crossings), and Rock Creek was okay (recent trail maintenance is great, but the tread is still a WIP, and it was tough going for the kids). Between the creek crossings, rough trail, clouds of crane flies & mosquitos, and early start, my kids were a lot to handle, so I decided to turn around early and skip the falls. Return trip was a lot more fun, especially after I discovered the simple joy of tossing manzanita berries at kids and blaming it on the squirrels. 3yo caught me mid-toss so I had to bribe her to secrecy with skittles.

Between Haunted Canyon back in March and this trip, I'm starting to realize just how heckin' amazing the Eastern Supes are, and I think a long backpack may be necessary in the near future.
_____________________
Apr 18 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Asbestos PointGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 18 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking5.81 Miles 2,118 AEG
Hiking5.81 Miles   5 Hrs   45 Mns   1.24 mph
2,118 ft AEG   1 Hour   3 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Camping adventure with kiddos. Spent the night at Pocket Spring, really appreciate @LindaAnn for the intel on the options along FR 489. Started up the remaining two-track in the morning, some sections of loose gravel was too much for the 3yo, 5yo & 6yo had no problem. Hit the highpoint first via a direct and regrettable approach. Circled back on the traditional northern side, it was slightly better. Followed up with the mines after, kids absolutely loved those. Lunch at the saddle and then a surprisingly quick descent. Great introduction for them to the area.
Culture
Culture
Campsite

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

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Pocket Spring - Sierra Ancha Mtns Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
_____________________
Apr 12 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Little Saddle Mountain Loop, AZ 
Little Saddle Mountain Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 12 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking3.16 Miles 518 AEG
Hiking3.16 Miles   3 Hrs   40 Mns   1.16 mph
518 ft AEG      57 Mns Break
 
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Familiar, easy-to-reach loop for Easter hiking with kids. Up Little Saddle, with a few pauses to admire the wooded sections and babbling brook, continue past Sunflower junction until it rejoined the creek, then follow the creek downstream to the Sunflower crossing. Creek was overgrown, as could be expected, and I had to coach/bribe/threaten them at times to continue on. Still don't understand what's so scary about a little catclaw. Scars build character. Anyways, easy hike up Sunflower to FR 393. Flowers were pretty, things were green, clouds were lovely, trail is great, etc. Saw a two 2-person groups on AZT, one ORV on 393, and a ton of people camping on Old Beeline, otherwise a successfully social distant outing.
_____________________
Apr 04 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Parker - Moody - Coon Loop, AZ 
Parker - Moody - Coon Loop, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Apr 04 2020
jacobemerick
Backpack30.02 Miles 7,970 AEG
Backpack30.02 Miles2 Days         
7,970 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Souped-up version of a classic Sierra Ancha lasso. I can imagine this being done as a day hike if one trimmed some extra out.

Parker Creek #160
This trail was a dream, if a cold one. Creek was rushing loudly and trail in 'okay' shape - some non-prickly overgrowth and at least a dozen deadfall - on the way up to the saddle. Can imagine this being a real winner in the summer months. Past the saddle the overgrowth got more pokey and that last little climb from the Rim Trail junction is just mean. Reached the east end and pulled some water from a spring off of FR 487 before Peterson TH.

Abbey's Way #151
First half mile was fantastic, open meadows and seeping water around the old ranch site. Sections of the trail were flooded. Then the climb starts, and with it the deadfall and prickly stuff. Trail is in much worse shape than it was in the summer of '18 during my last visit. It's not bad enough where you'll get lost or have to route-find, just be ready for bloodshed and tears, etc. On Aztec Peak I stopped for third-breakfast at the stone patio area and shivered in the wind. Descended down FR 487 to the ranger cabin and the unmarked Moody TH.

Moody's Point #140
Dreary switchbacks through heavy fire damage for the first mile. Well-maintained, and good views, but dreary surroundings. Glad I did this section heading downhill. Closer to Rim Trail things liven up, mixed forests and plenty of green, and I was back in love. Trickling water along sections of trail east of Rim. Once I dropped off the 'tip' I was shocked to see recent maintenance on the trail, huge cairns and clean tread. It was fabulous. The maintenance stopped about 500' above where I turned around last month... yeah. That burned. Fought for a half-mile through thick stuff and then cruised along the ridge. Having now finished this trail, I'd say that's no worse than any other trail out here, get the right mindset and push through the half-mile of nasty.

Deep Creek #128
Little roller coaster through numerous tributaries of Deep Creek. After the visual overload of the last few hours this one felt a bit bland. Plus, there was no flowing water on the creek beds, only a few standing puddles, which, given the busy state of Parker Creek, I had been expecting more. Never Go Dry made for a decent water-pull / lunch spot. Oh, and there were some neat campsites along the tributaries. Cruised the last few miles to the TH and debated life decisions.

Coon Creek #124
First 1.5 miles was easy going on the old roadbed and I kept staring ahead at Coon Creek canyon, wondering if it was reasonable to attempt tomorrow or if bailing on forest roads made more sense. Then the trail twists and plunges down to the creek itself, and half of the descent was cairn-less guesswork down washed-out gullies. Found a few markers before the creek and pulled to full capacity before climbing the other side. Either the afternoon shade or the frequent copses made the climb much more pleasant than the drop had been. When I got to the wilderness boundary I found a used campsite with a flat pad and decided to call it for the day.

Camp: did a basic cowboy setup, as it's lighter than my current hammock gear. Used a new pad and melatonin to attempt to get a decent sleep - as an anxious side-sleeper, I rarely get more than hour-long stretches outside. Vast improvement. Woke up feeling refreshed and ready to tackle Coon Creek.

Coon Creek #254
Returned to junction and sped north. First half mile, over the saddle and down to the drainage, was pretty darn easy, and the saddle itself was dreamy. The drainage is where route-finding starts to get difficult, with brush and disuse hiding the way forward. Had to stop frequently to look for cairns. The burn got bad 1.1 miles from junction, where the pines were scorched, and route-finding got more difficult, as sections of tread were washed out. At 1.5 miles the trail drops down to the creek and it stays there, jumping back and forth on frequent crossings. I lost count after a dozen. Sometimes I followed it on the banks until I lost it (or the thorny stuff got too painful), other times I'd just rock-hop. The trail is definitely still there, and with a trimmer and some rebuilding of creek-crossing cairns it could be revived, and I saw no evidence of major wash-out or irrevocable damage. Pretty sure it jumps up on the west bank around 6155' and stays there, though I stuck to the creek bed until the far side of Trailside Spring drainage (where the creek flow pretty much trickled to nothing), and had to do some mild scrambling before hacking up to the old trail and crawling/crying through large swaths of truly terrible thorny thickets. At least I think I found Mud Spring along the way.

Parker Creek #160
Switched over to auto-pilot mode. This is a fun one to trot down. Two groups of day-hikers, the only other people I saw all weekend #socialdistancing

Sierra Ancha Miles: 38.8/59.1 (65.6%)
Culture
Culture
Campsite
Meteorology
Meteorology
Snow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Coon Creek Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Creek and spring and tank were all quite full / overfull.

dry Deep Creek Tank Dry Dry
Like, super dry.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Hunt Spring Dripping Dripping
Few puddles at Rim Trail crossing. Still haven't found the 'real' dependable source.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Mud Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Water trickling down rock face into Coon Creek, lots of grass and moss makes me feel like this could be dependable throughout much of the year.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Never Go Dry Tank 76-100% full 76-100% full
Both tanks along trail full, source of tanks was trickling clear water.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 South Fork Parker Creek Heavy flow Heavy flow
Great flow throughout the entire creek.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Upper South Fork Parker Creek Heavy flow Heavy flow
_____________________
Mar 29 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Ben Avery Trail - Indian Spring PetroglyphsSouthwest, AZ
Southwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 29 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking6.79 Miles 566 AEG
Hiking6.79 Miles   5 Hrs   39 Mns   1.68 mph
566 ft AEG   1 Hour   36 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/ kiddos. Trail was beautiful, great desert area, and plenty of flowers to slow down the pace. Petroglyphs were amazing. Was a bit disappointed in Indian Spring, there were puddles in the rock tanks and washes the entire hike, but the bedrock proper looked to be maybe a foot deep? I didn't explore enough to see if there was a huge puddle hiding further back. The distance turned out to be right at my kid's limit with the exposure, they were asleep five minutes into the long drive home.

Oh, and the drive was decent - Centennial had a few sluffs to slow down around, Pipeline had several thousand sandy washes to bounce over, and the final forest road was great except for the jug around 1731', which my 2WD was able to handle with a bit of coaxing. I think an adventurous sedan could make it all the way to 1731', which is a stone's throw from the trailhead. Also, there was a small army parked along the forest road in the morning, complete with contractor trailers and a helo, who were doing maintenance on the water tanks back there. Good people. Finally, only saw one couple on trail all the day #socialdistancing
Named place
Named place
Courthouse Rock Indian Spring

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Indian Spring Dripping Dripping
"bedrock" tank had a foot of cool water up the side drainage
_____________________
Mar 22 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Haunted Canyon #203Globe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 22 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking4.81 Miles 448 AEG
Hiking4.81 Miles   4 Hrs   3 Mns   1.44 mph
448 ft AEG      42 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
After a rough morning we got a abnormally late start, reaching a mostly-full trailhead around 11, and the kids and I quickly hit the road/trail. I delayed our first crossing, hoping to find some deadfall or rocks to hop across, eventually accepting our fate and wading across the knee-deep creek. Once they realized that walking in water was okay they decided to splash through every single mud puddle and little tributary in the way. That, plus big three-year-old feelings, had us moving pretty slowly, and we made it a half mile past the corral and on the single-track before I decided to call it and we turned around. Nice outing, great area, and pretty quiet - even with the full trailhead, we only saw six groups (four backpackers heading out and two dayhikes). We'll be back.
_____________________
Mar 21 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
North Fork Falls of Deadman CanyonPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 21 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking21.02 Miles 4,585 AEG
Hiking21.02 Miles   11 Hrs   31 Mns   2.31 mph
4,585 ft AEG   2 Hrs   24 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Needed a little day hike to get away from the world. Delivered.

Half Moon #288
Great shape. Some sections have been cleaned up since my last visit a few years ago. Every creek and drainage was overflowing, Barnhardt and Rock required using deadfall to get across dry. A recent redirect at the end, within sight of Rock Creek TH, that was confusing, but it eventually looped back down.

Rock Creek #42
There were a few sections of new overgrowth on the climb up to the creek crossing, nothing worth fretting about. Once I got past the first half mile of climb this one actually felt fun, especially in the cliff breaks. Yeah the falls were flowing. Snow became a minor issue after 6000', hiding tread and adding a few slips, all fun & games. Descent to Hopi is 95% defined with a narrow break in the manzanita and a few cairns. Hopi Spring looks amazing.

Horse Camp Seep / Deadman Falls
Saw my first hikers of the day here ( @Metalrunner! ) and quickly puttered down to check out the falls from the north bank. They are amazing. Photos don't do them justice. I could have spent all day sitting on that rim, listening to their roar and feeling the mist fly up.

Mazatzal Divide #23
Is more of a waterway than a trail. Sloppy going. Saw a few backpackers here, told some stories, gave unsolicited advice, etc.

Barnhardt #43
Quite muddy. Suspect that there had been a lot of traffic in-and-out today, churning up the path, though I only saw three this late in the afternoon. Those falls were flowing too. A few sections are starting to get shade from taller willows/manzanita, which would be heckin' awesome.

This was exactly the break I was looking for today, complete with long periods of solitude and an almost-constant sound of falling water. I get why some OG members have been here so many times.
Named place
Named place
Deadman Canyon Falls - North Fork
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Mar 14 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Little Chance Canyon LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 14 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking3.00 Miles 422 AEG
Hiking3.00 Miles
422 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Headed back out for an easy loop in the Goldfields with sister and a few additional kiddos. Assumed that the waterflow would be impressive after this week, but it was actually less than my previous visit a few weeks ago, when we did this (plus a few other GF trails) after a night/morning of rain. Water runs quick. Anyways, trails were still pretty and we made our way through the 'mouse trap' to see Willow Springs proper, which turned out to be a real gem and worth the soaking we all got on the way in.
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Mar 08 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Bell Trail to the Crack - Wet Beaver CreekCamp Verde, AZ
Camp Verde, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 08 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking7.00 Miles 520 AEG
Hiking7.00 Miles
520 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Hike w/ kiddos. The skies were grey and cloudy and threatening, though they did little more than spit a few times at us. Trail is flat and easy for the first two miles, a few sections of rock that tripped the little ones, and then it gets exposed, and I had to mandate some hand-holding to avoid ill-timed stumbles. Took us over five hours, four breaks, sugary bribes, and a few threats, but everyone made the distance without carries. At this point I fear they might be ready for R2R2R before teenage years :o

Crowds were light, saw maybe ten groups in all, everyone was super friendly and happy to be out.
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Mar 07 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Montezuma Castle and Well, AZ 
Montezuma Castle and Well, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Mar 07 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking1.00 Miles 150 AEG
Hiking1.00 Miles
150 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Hauled the kiddos up for a weekend adventure on Wet Beaver. Started at Montezuma Castle. It was a headache to get through the VC and paid up with three balls of pent-up energy, and when we broke through the other side I let them loose on the unsuspecting, mostly docile, public. They zipped through the short walk, peppering everyone with rapid-fire bursts of questions and exclamations, and were shocked by how soon it was over. So we headed up to the Well next. Enjoyed this visit more, with the longer and more rugged walk, plus a larger variety of scenery (ruins and water and more ruins and more water, oh my!). Of course, I hovered around the 3yo, suspecting that any step was one stumble away from her going over the edge and a long tumble into the sink. After this was all done we meandered over to FR 618 and found a fantastic campsite for the night.
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Mar 05 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Moody Point Trail #140Globe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 05 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking10.25 Miles 3,631 AEG
Hiking10.25 Miles   7 Hrs   24 Mns   1.60 mph
3,631 ft AEG   1 Hour    Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Parked at Leisure Canyon around 6:15. Almost missed the parking area, it's a bit overgrown, but there's comfortable room for 2-3 vehicles back there. Trail is located 100' south of parking area along the road, cairns hidden under brush, though the cleared path through the catclaw is very wide. Only had to duck a few times on the way down to the river under low mesquite branches. Overall a quick, easy trot down to Cherry Creek. As is the AZ style, the trail only leads to the bank, and crossing is an exercise left to the hiker. This meant winding through mud, brush, and debris, scouting out the water, and then hopping across on wobbly rocks. Cherry Creek gauge was 24 CFS and I was able to cross dry, tho I did have to leverage trekking poles heavily.

Quickly found an old-style gate through the fence on the opposite bank. The trail follows the fenceline (on the landward side) and is easy to follow. Turns out that there is a much nicer, easier-to-use gate further to the south, closer to Flying H and the old topo track for this trail, though I didn't figure that out until I was on my return trip. Anyways, easy path north and up the bank, though I had a hard time tracking exactly where the trail leaves the fence and starts THE CLIMB. Found three possible candidates, none of them seem 'official'. Once you get through the mesquite grove it's easier to pick up a tread and cairns.

So, that climb. This trail is more vertical than not. I was hauling a 25lb pack... well, an 'ultralight' overnight pack with 6L of water, and I immediately regretted the extra water. Any sort of morning chill was replaced by steady sweat and the I longed for the shade that was eliminated on the south-facing slope. The trail is in surprisingly good shape for most of it, with well-placed cairns and solid tread, plenty of switchbacks and lovely views, and it's still a relentless upward haul. The few times I lost the trail was more due to sweat-in-the-eyes than overgrowth.

Once I got directly below the ruins I cut a straight line up, which was a terrible idea with my pack, and ran into a small, angled footpath halfway up that smarter people use. Reached the ruins and was amazed, etc. Had breakfast here. After the ruins cut straight over, scrambled a bit, and found a very short and steep way on top of the ridge. Trail was harder to track on top and game paths won most of my attention. Made it to the Deep Creek junction and the tread immediately became harder to follow, for obvious Deep Creek :next: Moody Point :next: ruins traffic pattern. Fire damage became more apparent at the saddle. Then, half mile further, after fighting with manzanita and deadfall and steep grade and a trail that absolutely did not want to be followed for longer than a dozen feet, I twisted my knee and decided that maybe an out-and-back was a better idea today.

Heading down was a mix of semi-familiarity with the trail helping and stabs of knee pain slowing me down. As I now had a wealth of daylight, I took my time, and stopped for more breaks than I had on the climb up. Also noticed that the trail was very easy to follow on the slopes and harder on the (few) flat sections, and that someone had recently done some trail maintenance (slashed prickly pear paddles). Eventually made it back to the Jeep, spread out my wealth of uneaten food on the passenger seat, and retreated back to Phoenix, scheming on how to knock out the second half of this trail in a more sane approach.
Culture
Culture
Salado Habitation
Named place
Named place
Moody Point Sierra Ancha Wilderness
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Feb 23 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Javelina - Willow Basin - Willow Canyon Loop, AZ 
Javelina - Willow Basin - Willow Canyon Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 23 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking5.33 Miles 673 AEG
Hiking5.33 Miles   4 Hrs   21 Mns   1.36 mph
673 ft AEG      25 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Hike w kids. Started down the Jeep Road and jumped on Javelina Crossover / Gold Eagle Nuggets. This trail was a ton of fun, especially with the frequent water obstacles. Found a creative side trek to Little Chance Canyon that ended in a long butt-slide for all three kids over soaked rocks. The rest of the canyon, and the trail to Willow Spring Basin, began to wear on the gang, the roller coaster sucking the energy right out of the 3yo. Once the trail decided to trend down towards to the Basin Tank, which was overflowing, they cheered up. Had lunch in the canyon and began the long trek back, interrupted four or five times with ORVs. Tried to stick to the creek through the spring area, the water and climb was a bit too much to handle with them, so we took another way back to FR12 and followed it the rest of the way. No significant carries needed for any of them, just some light encouragement and sugary bribes.
_____________________
Feb 21 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Gilbert Riparian PreservePhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 21 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking1.72 Miles 47 AEG
Hiking1.72 Miles   1 Hour   8 Mns   1.64 mph
47 ft AEG      5 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
Somehow never realized that this preserve was a few miles from the kids school. Walking around the preserve, finding rabbits and birds, was a nice change than the usual after-school playground visit. Lots of other families also enjoying the trails. Kids even found some interesting side paths to check out.
_____________________
Feb 17 2020
jacobemerick
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 983
 Triplogs 125

35 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Flatiron Hike - SuperstitionsPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 17 2020
jacobemerick
Hiking7.62 Miles 3,368 AEG
Hiking7.62 Miles   7 Hrs   51 Mns   1.19 mph
3,368 ft AEG   1 Hour   27 Mns Break
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
It was time for the 6yo to summit Flatiron. Early start, got lost in LDSP, reached the Draw in 1.5 hours. After a chilly second-breakfast we continued on, finding a new way around some of the climb post-Draw that involved scrambling up the drainage, and then got terribly off track near the top and found an alternate, more exposed, route up. Made it up in 3.5 hours total. There were a few people on top, including some pups and another kid that was maybe 8 or 9, overall not crowded given the holiday. Was better about staying on track on the way down. Kid needed some help on the downclimbs, mostly spotted him and provided a few lifts, but he did every single climb on the way up by himself. Fantastic weather, maybe a bit on the chilly side, good company on the trail, and the look of pride on this kid's face was absolutely priceless.
Named place
Named place
The Flatiron

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Siphon Draw Waterfall Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
Trickling down the falls and all the way down the slickrock.
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average hiking speed 1.58 mph
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