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McFadden Peak - 5 members in 14 triplogs have rated this an average 3.2 ( 1 to 5 best )
14 triplogs
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Apr 30 2022
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 Guides 4
 Routes 396
 Photos 9,095
 Triplogs 1,070

52 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Elephant Arch and McFadden Peak Lookout, AZ 
Elephant Arch and McFadden Peak Lookout, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 30 2022
BiFrostTriplogs 1,070
Hiking7.60 Miles 1,896 AEG
Hiking7.60 Miles   4 Hrs   57 Mns   1.83 mph
1,896 ft AEG      48 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Partners partners
slowandsteady
Two hikes in one in the Ancha! From the Young Highway 288 at the saddle near McFadden Peak we hiked generally east off trail towards the arch. It's a traverse for the most part dodging trees and small brush along the way. The fire that happened a few years ago burned part of the area so we found staying off the up slope kept us out of the burn area and also made for easier travel.

Eventually we reached the arch area and a drainage that had a little water. From the drainage it's up a ridge and followed the ridgeline to the arch base. Great views on top of everything around Elephant Arch which juts out on the ridgeline. We had lunch and spent about 45 minutes enjoying the arch and surrounding rock features.

After the lunch we headed back the way we came except that I stayed down slope more this time. That avoided the burn areas and made for much easier travel. We made it back to the road quickly by taking the better route.

Still being early in the afternoon we decided to check out the McFadden Peak Lookout from the same parking spot. The gate was locked which was good and we had the whole road to ourselves. It's about 1.3 miles one way I think to the lookout. Unfortunately it was locked up and could not get up on the platform. A few minutes checking things out and we hiked back down the road to our vehicle. Good second hike to round out the afternoon.

Bonus for the days effort we hit Guayo's Mexican for dinner :D before heading back to Phoenix.
Culture
Culture [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Cag Shot
Named place
Named place [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] McFadden Peak Fire Lookout

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max McFadden Horse Mtn Gully (lower) Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
a few pools and a trickle
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2 archives
Oct 16 2019
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 Guides 70
 Routes 651
 Photos 10,844
 Triplogs 710

male
 Joined Jan 07 2017
 Fountain Hills,
The McFaddens & Elephant Rock Arch, AZ 
The McFaddens & Elephant Rock Arch, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Oct 16 2019
DixieFlyerTriplogs 710
Hiking9.30 Miles 2,685 AEG
Hiking9.30 Miles   6 Hrs   7 Mns   2.12 mph
2,685 ft AEG   1 Hour   44 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners partners
SecretMtnLover
I managed to convince Tracie, my favorite and intrepid hiking partner, to join me on a trip to the Sierra Anchas. The plan was to do 2 hikes: Hike #1 was to go to the McFadden Peak Summit via FR 561, and then when we got back to the TH we'd go up to Elephant Rock Arch; Hike #2 was to go to the summit of McFadden Horse Mountain.

Hike #1 went off without a hitch. The hike up to McFadden Peak on the forest road was basically a mini Mount Ord hike. There were some nice views at the summit and along the way up, but the hike wasn't terribly exciting. I really enjoyed being up on Elephant Rock Arch, although the hike there was slow going -- it was entirely off-trail, and there was quite a bit of vegetation to go around or through. I would definitely recommend a GPS track for the hike up to the arch -- there are several good tracks in the triplogs on this site.

The hike up to the arch took a bit longer and was more tiring than I expected, so we did not go all the way to the summit of McFadden Horse Mountain. Instead, we took the McFadden Horse Trail up to the junction with the Cienega Springs Trail and then turned around and went back to the TH. The TH was a small pullout on Highway 288 just across from mile marker 288. I plan to go back to the area before long and bag McFadden Horse Mountain and Aztec Peak.

Mileage and elevation gain above is the sum of the 2 hikes: The hike to McFadden Peak and Elephant Rock Arch was 7.3 miles with 2,025' of elevation gain; the hike up and down the portion of McFadden Horse Road was 2.0 miles with 660' of elevation gain.
Culture
Culture [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Reference Mark
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation None
There was virtually no fall foliage to be seen -- there was a bit of sumac and a random leaf here and there. I imagine that it will be a week or 2 before much fall foliage is seen.
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May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. -- Edward Abbey
1 archive
Aug 24 2016
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 Routes 34
 Photos 2,517
 Triplogs 1,207

65 male
 Joined Jul 28 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
McFaddening, AZ 
McFaddening, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Aug 24 2016
mazatzalTriplogs 1,207
Hiking9.00 Miles 3,100 AEG
Hiking9.00 Miles   6 Hrs      1.80 mph
3,100 ft AEG   1 Hour    Break
 no routes
1st trip
Decided to check out a few new places :) First up was Haigler Creek from Fisherman's Point - great area. Looks like the creekside campground a bit further downstream is pretty nice too.

After Haigler I headed south through Young and hit McFadden Peak - nice short hike up the road to the lookout and a short detour down the Park McFadden trail.

Last up was McFadden Horse Mountain, just to the high point. Some light rain on the way back down the steep trail.
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2 archives
Sep 19 2015
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 Guides 260
 Routes 841
 Photos 13,090
 Triplogs 5,291

52 male
 Joined Nov 20 1996
 Phoenix, AZ
McFadden Super Loop, AZ 
McFadden Super Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Sep 19 2015
joebartelsTriplogs 5,291
Hiking20.40 Miles 4,300 AEG
Hiking20.40 Miles   10 Hrs   18 Mns   2.19 mph
4,300 ft AEG   1 Hour    Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Redo of Bruce's masterpiece plus Cienega #145.

McFadden Horse Trail
Most will rate this lower due to the steep approach. The forest up top, eastern and Elephant Butte views win me over.

Elephant Rock Arch
Bridged the gap connecting McFadden to Elephant Rock. Shorts are fine, took under a half hour. We stopped above the arch then headed down. 1 class four downclimb. Ironically I climbed up it last time out of curiosity. I couldn't figure out the downclimb last time so I jumped 10? feet. Got the twist move on the first try this time then did it again for fun. Fairly certain you could backtrack a bit to avoid the obstacle.

McFadden Peak
Just a road walk up. Impressive views of the thick mogul berber carpet of pines.

Park McFadden Trail #55
Majority of this is an old road down to Circle Ranch. Without using Hank's track I would have missed where it leaves the road for awhile. The cairns at each end are faint and the trail is faint for that segment. Found a tank and added to the map. From Circle Ranch down it's a nice trail. The upper isn't bad but most would prefer the lower part.

Cienega Spring Trail #145
Just a road. A little closer and personal views such as from McFadden Peak.
Fauna
Fauna [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Teva

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Cienega Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
water report recorded in the field on our app Route Scout Super fresh clear

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- joe
Sep 19 2015
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 Guides 4
 Routes 396
 Photos 9,095
 Triplogs 1,070

52 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
McFadden Super Loop, AZ 
McFadden Super Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Sep 19 2015
BiFrostTriplogs 1,070
Hiking20.48 Miles 4,391 AEG
Hiking20.48 Miles   10 Hrs   18 Mns   2.20 mph
4,391 ft AEG   1 Hour    Break
 no routes
1st trip
Joe put together a great loop that was derived from an earlier trip to Elephant Arch. We hiked up McFadden Horse Trail from Hwy 288 to get to the arch gaining 1600 feet right from the start. Once on top we had excellent views traversing out to the arch with this area definitely the highlight of the loop. Just the approach to the arch was half the fun negotiating the rocky cliffs and great views. We took a nice break at the arch before heading downhill and another traverse towards McFadden Peak.

On the road to McFadden Peak the views again were excellent and the tower was in good shape. Spent some time checking it out with birds eye view of the entire range. Coming off the top we picked up the Park McFadden Trail and followed this down several miles to Circle Ranch and Reynolds Creek area. Lots of shade on the way down with impressive stands of ponderosa and large oaks. We crossed Hwy 288 and headed up another road following Reynolds Creek for a few miles.

We finished off the day looping around to Cienega Spring which was nice surprise. The spring box was feed by a pipe with very clean looking water and cool meadow area. From there we followed Cienega Spring Trail to close the loop from where we started early in the morning.
Geology
Geology [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Natural Arch
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2 archives
May 02 2015
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 Guides 43
 Routes 149
 Photos 22,422
 Triplogs 2,281

72 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
FR2752 McFadden Peak Loop, AZ 
FR2752 McFadden Peak Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar May 02 2015
CannondaleKidTriplogs 2,281
Hiking10.10 Miles 2,001 AEG
Hiking10.10 Miles   4 Hrs   50 Mns   2.16 mph
2,001 ft AEG      10 Mns Break25 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Partners partners
trixiec
With another weekend off coming up, Tracey had only a few stipulations:

1. Must be in the Sierra Ancha
2. Roughly a 10 mile hike each day
3. On-trail hiking
4. Trails we had not yet hiked

Hmmm, one at a time is no big deal, but all four? I had to put my thinking cap on for that one.
:-k
With some vague ideas from the last few times we camped out this way I threw together a few ideas on Route Manager, along with a couple back-ups (trails we had hiked before) and wonder of wonders, things worked out pretty well... 10.1 miles Saturday and 10.0 on Sunday. But I'm getting ahead of myself...

On the drive up Young Highway we stopped next to some hunters dressed in camo on ATV's and asked what season it was. The response was turkey season... and there are a lot of hunters up there, pointing in the general direction of Aztec Peak. Oh great!
:tt:
Last year our camp was surrounded by hunters during elk season, so will we have the same thing to look forward to? Thankfully, although there certainly were a lot of people camping wherever they could along Workman Creek to Aztec Peak road, we got there early enough on Saturday to nab a great spot... conveniently small enough we'd be alone and a half-mile from the nearest neighbors.
:y:
Ok, the hike...
We parked a few hundred yards off Young highway on Forest Road 2752, which begins .6 mile north of McFadden Peak road. From there we followed the road all the way to Park Tank, taking a wide arc around the west side of McFadden Peak, crossing Turkey Creek along the way.

On the southward climb still on FR2752 we met a bow hunter on an ATV with a monstrous turkey laying across the front rack. He had bagged it by setting up well in advance, using a turkey-call but once or twice an hour, and simply waiting out the long hours until the turkey came to him. And what a tom it was! Tracey took a photo with her camera but I have yet to see it.
(I didn't have the presence of mind to do the same)
](*,)
We continued on to Park Tank and a bit farther until connecting with Park McFadden Trail #55, which we would follow up to McFadden Peak. There was a ranger at the tower along with his wife, who apologized for not inviting us up as he was feeling ill, blurting out that his cancer had spread.
:cry:
Not that we expected to go up the tower anyway... so we bid our condolences, took some photos and headed down the road to Young Highway. No more drama on the hike from the tower down to AZ 288 then along 288 to FR2752. Wow! I only goofed up by a little bit, going over the 10-mile stipulation by a mere 500 feet.
:whistle:
Sorry, just photos, no video today...
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CannondaleKid
Sep 20 2014
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 Guides 8
 Routes 20
 Photos 512
 Triplogs 194

51 male
 Joined Apr 22 2008
 Mesa, AZ
McFadden PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 20 2014
charlieazTriplogs 194
Hiking2.90 Miles 786 AEG
Hiking2.90 Miles   1 Hour   30 Mns   1.93 mph
786 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
McFadden Peak was the middle peak of a three-peak day.

I left my house at 4:00 am and drove the 2.5 hours straight to Squaw Peak located a few miles south of Young. Although a little steep, it was an easy quarter-mile hike to the top where I played radio for about an hour.

After Squaw Peak I drove to the gate for McFadden Peak and parked there. I hiked up the road to the lookout tower where there were a gazillion lady bugs in just about every tree and shrub. There was also a group of Varsity scouts doing Operation On-Target http://ontarget.mesavarsity.org/ from the tower. After about 45 minutes there I realized I still had a lot of daylight – it was only 10:30 am – so I made the impromptu decision to hike McFadden Horse trail.

I knew from the start I wasn’t going to do the whole stretch, just to the McFadden Horse Mountain summit and back. It took me 2 hours to hike up and 55 min to hike down.
I was in the car at 3:30 and home by 6:00.
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2 archives
Sep 06 2014
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 Guides 20
 Routes 12
 Photos 2,321
 Triplogs 293

48 male
 Joined Mar 31 2008
 Gilbert, AZ
McFadden PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Walk / Tour avatar Sep 06 2014
ssk44Triplogs 293
Walk / Tour
Walk / Tour
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
A stormy afternoon at the McFadden Peak fire tower. :D
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ISAIAH 6:2-3 / MATTHEW 11:28-30
Jul 12 2014
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 Guides 20
 Routes 12
 Photos 2,321
 Triplogs 293

48 male
 Joined Mar 31 2008
 Gilbert, AZ
McFadden PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Scenic Drive avatar Jul 12 2014
ssk44Triplogs 293
Scenic Drive
Scenic Drive
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
The road up onto McFadden Peak is open for the time being this season...

I was on a road trip with my dad on Saturday working our way down from the Rim heading towards Roosevelt. The open gate easily caught our attention. We've both been wanting to go up there for some time now. We weren't about to let that opportunity pass us up.

A married couple is working the fire tower this season and allowing visitors during day. There camping in a travel trailer just below the summit. Nice couple. This is there first time working a fire tower. The guy was real friendly. He shared some very colorful war stories from this years monsoon season up there. Crazy stuff. Working a fire tower is not for the faint of heart. There enjoying there experience overall, however I believe the relentless violent storms have been taking its toll on them. We hung out on the summit for about hour watching big storms circle from all directions. It was a great summit experience. If you've been wanting to come up here but have been putting it off due to the closed gate, now is the time to go. They'll let you climb the tower unless lightning is in the close vicinity. It was marginal while we were up there. We got lucky. Only took one photo. The light was really clean on McFadden Horse Mountain with a sweet dark background monsoon against the far distant Sombrero Peak about eleven miles southeast.


Eric
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ISAIAH 6:2-3 / MATTHEW 11:28-30
Mar 15 2014
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 Guides 13
 Routes 100
 Photos 1,794
 Triplogs 372

48 male
 Joined Jul 27 2011
 Mesa AZ
McFadden PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 15 2014
BEEBEETriplogs 372
Hiking2.90 Miles 786 AEG
Hiking2.90 Miles   1 Hour   10 Mns   2.49 mph
786 ft AEG28 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Gate was closed hiked up the road and activated the Peak for SOTA before heading over to Camp GH for dinner. Beautiful day 28 contacts fantastic view of the Area.
Named place
Named place [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] McFadden Peak Fire Lookout
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"I hope we have once again reminded people that man is not free unless government is limited. There's a clear cause and effect here that is as neat and predictable as a law of physics: as government expands, liberty contracts."
Oct 07 2012
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 Guides 43
 Routes 149
 Photos 22,422
 Triplogs 2,281

72 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
McFadden PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 07 2012
CannondaleKidTriplogs 2,281
Hiking2.90 Miles 786 AEG
Hiking2.90 Miles   1 Hour   15 Mns   2.90 mph
786 ft AEG      15 Mns Break3 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
trixiec
Short hike from the locked gate near the Young Highway to the fire lookout tower at the top. Tracey liked the idea of only 1 mile (as the sign along the highway said) but did NOT like the steep climb in that short a distance. But it was a good hike to top off our weekend in the Sierra Ancha area.

Not many photos so I posted them on HAZ and my own web site here:
http://changephoenix.com/jpserver/web/public/album.php?id=249

No video... once we could not climb the tower I forgot all about it.
Named place
Named place [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] McFadden Peak Fire Lookout
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CannondaleKid
Jul 13 2008
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 Guides 14
 Routes 114
 Photos 4,615
 Triplogs 2,621

male
 Joined Oct 29 2005
 Scottsdale, AZ
McFadden PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Jul 13 2008
topohikerTriplogs 2,621
Hiking13.82 Miles 2,927 AEG
Hiking13.82 Miles   8 Hrs   15 Mns   1.68 mph
2,927 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
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"Everywhere is walking distance...If you have the time"
-Stephen Wright
Jul 12 2008
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 Guides 47
 Routes 495
 Photos 9,166
 Triplogs 560

77 male
 Joined Dec 28 2006
 Scottsdale, AZ
McFadden Peak via Park McFadden Trail #55Globe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Jul 12 2008
GrasshopperTriplogs 560
Hiking13.30 Miles 2,936 AEG
Hiking13.30 Miles   8 Hrs   15 Mns   1.61 mph
2,936 ft AEG
 
no photosets
1st trip
Partners partners
topohiker
After returning from Glacier NP on 7/9, I was having AZ "re-entry" problems big time. So topohiker-Ken and I decided to do a little decompression in-between two of our favorite areas to hike: The Sierra Ancha and Salome Wilderness.

This McFadden Park TR#55 has not had any plublicity on HAZ until now. Preston who wrote up the original McFadden Peak hike description via FR561(fm Hwy 288) sparked our interest level to try the longer version of this hike to McFadden Peak at 7135'.

This quick access Circle Ranch TH and recently maintained 5.6ml(.29ml on FR561) hike to McFadden Peak turned out to be another winner! Just .25ml from the TH start we found a huge "backberry patch" just off the right side of the trail following seasonal McFadden Creek. Don't know when in AZ is considered peak for blackberry season, but this is the place to come IF you know when and enjoy blackberries!

This easy to follow and somewhat rocky but cairned trail roams it way up through pinyon pine, alligator juniper, gamble oaks, and mountain mahogany. At approx 1.1mls you reach the private property across the fence line for the Circle Ranch homestead. Continuing on past a couple view points and crossing a few seasonal creeks and drainages you reach the first veiwpoint at 4.8mls for the historic 1968 built Fire Tower on the top of McFadden Peak.. your ending destination with a super 360 degree view of all! At 5.3mls you reach the intersection of FR561. It is just another ~.3mls up this well maintained dirt road to the fire tower. Ken and I were fortunate to find it occupied this time of year. While having lunch at the tower we had a nice conversation with Jay, who really does seem to have a less stressful life spending 5 days/nights a week here during our monsoon season. He told us that he had called-in a recent fire caused by a lighting strike just 3 days before or visit.

As we finished our lunch visit, Sierra Ancha and Salome Wilderness monsoon weather was again quickly approaching. Jay looked up, smiled, and said "you two are going to get wet before you reach your vehicle". Guess that we were kind-of looking forward to some rain as we decided to extend the hike by 2.1mls and +/- 575' by taking FR561 to its end at Hwy 288 then back up to the TR#55 intersection. The sky let loose just about the time we turned onto TR#55. It rained for 2 hrs straight..just delightful! The creeks and drainages were flowing again and all the forest smells were alive! We saw little wildlife on our hike, but I am sure they saw us.

A nice area and new trail to hike.. We do recommend it!
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(Outside.. "there is No Place Like It!!")
May 20 2007
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 Guides 169
 Routes 148
 Photos 5,683
 Triplogs 1,793

45 male
 Joined Apr 12 2004
 Oro Valley, AZ
McFadden PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar May 20 2007
PrestonSandsTriplogs 1,793
Hiking2.90 Miles 786 AEG
Hiking2.90 Miles   1 Hour   15 Mns   2.32 mph
786 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
This hike was originally more of an effort to get a cell phone signal out to call my wife. No luck. So I continued up to the top of the peak, where I got a signal. This was the first time I saw this place in the daylight. It was a nice hike with great views.
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"As soon as I can I’m sneaking back in them mountains..." -Johnny Paycheck
average hiking speed 2.1 mph

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

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