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Sycamore Canyon Rim Loop - 31 members in 76 triplogs have rated this an average 3.7 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Sep 07 2019
Eartheist
avatar

 Routes 5
 Photos 269
 Triplogs 187

48 male
 Joined Jul 16 2011
 Phoenix, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Backpack avatar Sep 07 2019
Eartheist
Backpack11.10 Miles 1,183 AEG
Backpack11.10 Miles
1,183 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
Droog
Falke
The_Dude

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Pomeroy Tanks 76-100% full 76-100% full
_____________________
Sep 07 2019
Vashti
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 72
 Photos 357
 Triplogs 105

female
 Joined Mar 11 2002
 Gilbert, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 07 2019
Vashti
Hiking4.81 Miles 756 AEG
Hiking4.81 Miles   2 Hrs   29 Mns   2.15 mph
756 ft AEG      15 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
Fun hike along the rim with the kids. :) I wanted to go further, but they had to turn around. Saw lots of climbers.
_____________________
:D
Jul 27 2019
adenium
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 29
 Photos 125
 Triplogs 246

45 male
 Joined Jul 05 2008
 Gilbert, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Jul 27 2019
adenium
Hiking6.75 Miles 964 AEG
Hiking6.75 Miles   2 Hrs   32 Mns   2.66 mph
964 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
Aug 18 2018
chumley
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 Guides 75
 Routes 668
 Photos 13,788
 Triplogs 1,462

46 male
 Joined Sep 18 2002
 Tempe, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 18 2018
chumley
Hiking12.42 Miles 1,372 AEG
Hiking12.42 Miles   5 Hrs   4 Mns   2.75 mph
1,372 ft AEG      33 Mns Break
 
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
There's nothing quite like waking up to the cool air of the mountains, and strolling out of camp and right onto the trail. :y:

It is evident that there was an impressive flood on the west side of the loop a few weeks ago, with evidence of water flowing about four feet deep in Isham Spring Canyon ... despite being totally dry now. This is neither a narrow, nor steep drainage, so it would have been something to see that flow. I had seen photos of the falls flowing on the socials, so I knew it had happened, but despite seeing the results on roads and drainages all around the area, there was no lingering flow today.

Nonetheless, it was a nice hike with water in all the usual spots, and probably a few others. It got a little bit warm in the sun, and our early start kept us from seeing anybody else until about 8 miles in, except for the huge mob of sheep that grazes up here and their human shepherd.

I learned that lobster mushrooms are edible ... actually delicious and taste amazingly like seafood. I need to hike with people who eat healthy foods more often! :sweat:
Culture
Culture
HAZ Food
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
Summer flowers looking nice, but not nearly as prolific as in other areas nearby.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Double Tanks 1-25% full 1-25% full
Surprised how little water was here. Enough for the dog, but just a few inches of muddy water at the bottom.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Dow Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Don't know the source or the flow but the entire drainage was full of water.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Isham Spring Canyon Light flow Light flow
The main pool was full.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max L O Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
No source or flow report, but the entire canyon was full of water.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Pomeroy Tanks 51-75% full 51-75% full
Plenty of water here. It was possible to pass by without getting wet though.
_____________________
Profound observer
Jul 03 2018
Boothroyd
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 Photos 26
 Triplogs 10

52 male
 Joined Oct 12 2013
 Flagstaff, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Jul 03 2018
Boothroyd
Hiking11.10 Miles 1,183 AEG
Hiking11.10 Miles   4 Hrs   30 Mns   2.47 mph
1,183 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Traveled counterclockwise from the trailhead nearest KA Hill. It was 85F and 15% humidity, 15-30mph wind. Trail was in good shape. Flower observations minimal. No water over falls, and what water I did see was stagnant. Saw a herd of +50 sheep bedded down in the creek near old sawmill site -- could smell them from a mile away. Even though the forest had Stage II fire restrictions, saw people driving their quads off designated routes and heard firearms discharge several times. Overall, nice day for one of my favorite hikes in the area.
_____________________
Jun 17 2018
Frostshocknoob
avatar

 Routes 141
 Triplogs 127

31 male
 Joined Sep 05 2014
 Phoenix, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Jun 17 2018
Frostshocknoob
Hiking11.65 Miles 1,371 AEG
Hiking11.65 Miles   4 Hrs   53 Mns   2.56 mph
1,371 ft AEG      20 Mns Break
 
no photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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_____________________
Apr 21 2018
azbackpackr
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 Guides 26
 Routes 373
 Photos 4,793
 Triplogs 727

67 female
 Joined Jan 21 2006
 Flag-summer-Need
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 21 2018
azbackpackr
Hiking12.06 Miles 1,280 AEG
Hiking12.06 Miles   6 Hrs   45 Mns   1.87 mph
1,280 ft AEG      18 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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This trail really surprised me, what with all the ponds along the way. I lost count! The hike seemed longer than 12 miles, although it is probably because I was tired from a backpacking trip the day before. I didn't see much wildlife, just some birds, squirrels, and horned lizards. But at one point I really smelled elk, very strong and pungent, and I think they may have been bedded down close by.

I read a lot of the previous triplogs, most of which mentioned mud and mosquitoes! No mud, no mosquitoes today!

I enjoyed the little KA Hill. The Peaks had fresh snow from a little storm yesterday, which was all melted by the time I finished the hike. It was 27 degrees when I got up this morning, but it warmed up very quickly and I hiked in a skort, always looking for shade for my breaks.

The views of Sycamore Canyon are splendid. I brought only a little point-and-shoot camera that doesn't do it justice.

At one point, near the Vista, I could see the cliffs I had camped underneath a couple nights before. I had hiked down the Kelsey-Little Lookout Trail and camped there Thursday night.

I don't know why my GPS posted as slightly longer by a half mile or more than other people's logs, but I did walk out to a lot of viewpoints, and also maybe because of where I parked. There is a spur trail to the parking area that's close to 1/4 mile.

All the springs I saw are ponds, and I don't know how to estimate gallons per minute when it's a pond. They all had a lot of water.
_____________________
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.
Aug 13 2017
LindaAnn
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 Guides 23
 Routes 361
 Photos 2,740
 Triplogs 1,061

39 female
 Joined Dec 24 2007
 Ahwatukee, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 13 2017
LindaAnn
Hiking11.92 Miles 1,525 AEG
Hiking11.92 Miles   5 Hrs   5 Mns   2.55 mph
1,525 ft AEG      24 Mns Break
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Before heading back to Phoenix, we decided to hike the Rim loop since we figured the falls would be flowing after all the rain the previous afternoon. We started at the falls, and they were definitely flowing. We continued on the loop counter-clockwise, through more mud than trail. Water everywhere, which was great to see, but the lack of a dry trail did slow us down. A few miles in, we saw a small AZ Black rattler hiding under a log, but that was pretty much it for the wildlife sightings. I always find the section between KA Hill and Pomeroy Tanks to be the most boring part of the loop, and it was again on Sunday. The abundance of mosquitoes added to the enjoyment too. Once at Pomeroy, it was impossible to get through some spots with dry shoes, so the last mile or so of the hike was crossing back and forth across the creek with no attempt to avoid the water. The entire loop was almost devoid of hikers all day--we only saw one other guy, and a few climbers near the falls.
_____________________
1 archive
Aug 13 2017
The_N
avatar

 Routes 54
 Photos 1,508
 Triplogs 325

33 male
 Joined Mar 18 2015
 Payson, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 13 2017
The_N
Hiking11.92 Miles 1,525 AEG
Hiking11.92 Miles   5 Hrs   5 Mns   2.55 mph
1,525 ft AEG      24 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
LindaAnn
This was a well-timed little Sunday stroll. We started from the falls and hiked CCW, the morning after good amount of rain fell on the area. The trail itself was essentially a small, muddy stream. Every drainage was flowing and feeding pools of chocolate yoo-hoo. Nice to see good flow at all of the falls. Skies were very clear, allowing for great views down canyon, to go with the sound of rushing water. A juvenile AZ black rattler gave us a buzz and hung out for a photo. I particularly enjoyed the climb up KA Hill and the change in scenery/footing. Pomeroy Tanks area was a waterworld. The trail was almost entirely under water, so we just took the path of least resistance, through clouds of mosquitoes. Weather stayed enjoyable all morning and we only saw one other hiker on the trails. This was a great first time visit to the area for me.
_____________________
If there is no struggle, there is no progress.
1 archive
Aug 12 2017
Tough_Boots
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 Routes 67
 Photos 2,708
 Triplogs 755

41 male
 Joined Mar 28 2008
 Phoenix, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 12 2017
Tough_Boots
Hiking11.90 Miles 1,448 AEG
Hiking11.90 Miles
1,448 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
BiFrost
John9L
slowandsteady
I had never hiked this loop before and honestly had kind of low expectations. It turned out to be pretty nice. We had clouds, shade, and nice temps most of the day. 9L managed to get us a quarter mile off trail within 3/4 miles of hiking-- a rather impressive and mathematically complicated feat. Lily had plenty of water to play in along the way and even found some lilypads to cool her own Lily pads near. Kathy read the historical markers for the benefit of us all. Karl mocked the gods with beer in hand which immediately brought rain, thunder, and lightning for the remainder of our hike. Tell my mother I'm rejoining the church.
_____________________
"there is no love where there is no bramble."
--bill callahan
Aug 12 2017
jacobemerick
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 Guides 31
 Routes 73
 Photos 915
 Triplogs 116

34 male
 Joined Dec 09 2014
 Gilbert, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 12 2017
jacobemerick
Hiking15.69 Miles 1,749 AEG
Hiking15.69 Miles   5 Hrs   45 Mns   3.14 mph
1,749 ft AEG      45 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Prologue
Chris, Kirsty, and I drove up Flagstaff-direction for the infamous summer HAZfest, arriving at the camp in the late afternoon. Got set up, met some cool people, and eventually hit the rack sometime after midnight. Woke up with the sunrise and was greeted by the local friendly horse herd before getting a ride over to Sycamore Falls Trailhead. Felt weird to start a hike in the daylight.


Before the loop proper started I just had to check out Paradise Forks. It looked cool. Followed the cut around and started on the loop counter-clockwise, mostly because the canyon looked so darn awesome. Sky was clear, views were big, and I only passed two groups for the first half of the hike. Also, humidity was high and mosquitoes were biting, so that was neat. Ran out of bug spray before Double Tanks (started with less than a quarter ounce). And the trail was quite muddy, causing a few slips along the way.

The trail shifted from epic views over a huge canyon to a more intimate setting along or in a narrow canyon, which was a pleasant change. There was also a break near Dow Spring where Garland Prairie intrudes on the pine forest. The climb up KA Hill started slow and got serious for the second half. Found a good view towards a shrouded San Francisco Peaks beyond the signed top of KA. That summit was an option for today, glad I went with this loop instead.

Bumped into Steve and Pam on the descent who were doing the loop the other way (and would end up having a way more epic time at it). After that the trail got kinda lame, going through a logging area and all. Pomeroy Tanks was okay. Humidity was getting to me by now and dreams of napping in my hammock was dancing through my head. Finished the loop and remembered that I didn't have a ride back to camp. Sunflower Flat seemed like an interesting name, so I cut a diagonal in a general southern direction and skipped the road hike. Got a gnarly cramp jumping over a fence and took a forced break by the flat, finishing off the last of my water and some peanuts before finding an old two-track that led me most of the way back to camp.

Epilogue
The promised nap never materialized, as a monsoon hit a short time later. My tarp is comically undersized and both of my quilts, plus hammock, were drenched. After debating options with my co-travelers were decided to drive back to Phoenix that night instead of staying through Sunday. Even with the shortened weekend, and a terrifying drive down I-17, it was still a fantastic outing. Great to put some faces to HAZ usernames.
Named place
Named place
Isham Spring Canyon Sunflower Flat

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Double Tanks 76-100% full 76-100% full
Only saw lower tank. It was brown.

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

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Isham Spring Canyon Medium flow Medium flow
Decent flow into the large trailside pools.

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

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Pomeroy Tanks 51-75% full 51-75% full
Trail was flooded in several locations.
_____________________
Aug 12 2017
nonot
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 Guides 93
 Routes 236
 Photos 2,001
 Triplogs 477

male
 Joined Nov 18 2005
 Phoenix, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 12 2017
nonot
Hiking11.30 Miles 1,183 AEG
Hiking11.30 Miles
1,183 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Did the rim loop once more. Saw an osprey, hawks, and vultures. Then found a HAZ hiker and helped out with navigating through a spot that wasn't well marked. Got caught in heavy rains and some lightning nearby delayed crossing some open meadows, but I finished after having to cross rivers from nowhere that were flowing into Sycamore canyon. The trail itself had 3 inches of water in most spots and keeping dry was not an option.
_____________________
http://hikearizona.com/garmin_maps.php

Hike Arizona it is full of sharp, pointy, ankle-twisting, HAZmaster crushing ROCKS!!
Hike Arizona it is full of sharp, pointy, shin-stabbing, skin-shredding plants!
Hike Arizona it is full of striking, biting, stabbing, venomous wildlife!
Aug 12 2017
BiFrost
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 Guides 4
 Routes 345
 Photos 7,218
 Triplogs 854

50 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 12 2017
BiFrost
Hiking11.90 Miles 1,448 AEG
Hiking11.90 Miles   5 Hrs   32 Mns   2.33 mph
1,448 ft AEG      25 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
John9L
slowandsteady
Tough_Boots
As part of the HAZFest weekend we decided to hike the Sycamore Rim Loop with John and Kyle on Saturday. After enjoying a great fire and good company on Friday night we started somewhat late from Sycamore Falls TH. But the loop isn’t too long so we made our way along the rim and enjoyed some decent views into Sycamore Canyon. After about 4 miles along the main rim the trail moves away and follows one of the canyon arms. This section was actually surprising scenic especially around LO Spring and Dow Spring.

After the springs we climbed Ka Hill the only real elevation of the day. It was just enough AEG to get a workout but not too much as we continued down the other side to Pomeroy Tanks. The tanks is a very cool area but unfortunately storms moved in so we didn’t stick around very long. It started to rain in the last mile so we made quick time back to the TH.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Dow Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
plenty of pools in and around the spring area with all the recent monsoon rain

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Isham Spring Canyon Medium flow Medium flow
medium flow from recent monsoon rains

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 L O Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
plenty of pools in and around the spring area with all the recent monsoon rain

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Pomeroy Tanks 76-100% full 76-100% full
many large pools in the area from recent monsoon rains
_____________________
2 archives
Aug 12 2017
John9L
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 Guides 6
 Routes 170
 Photos 4,848
 Triplogs 1,619

male
 Joined Mar 12 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 12 2017
John9L
Hiking12.09 Miles 1,524 AEG
Hiking12.09 Miles   5 Hrs   31 Mns   2.44 mph
1,524 ft AEG      34 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
Linked linked
Partners partners
BiFrost
slowandsteady
Tough_Boots
As part of HAZfest, our group of four headed over to the Sycamore Rim loop for a nice hike. We parked on the southwest side near Paradise Forks and opted for a CCW Loop. The going along the rim is very enjoyable and the views are fantastic! It was a beautiful and cool day to start but things would change later. We eventually turned to the north and reached the NE parking area where we saw Nonot and Outdoor Lover. They were camping with us at HAZfest and were going the opposite direction. We continued on and passed over KA hill and made our way into Pomeroy Tanks. At this point ominous clouds moved in and thunder rang out in the distance. We took some pics and kept hiking as rain started falling. The last half mile was a full on downpour with lightning nearby. We hurried and were back to the car without issue. We headed back over to Hazfest to dry off and regroup with the others. This was a fun hike but the nasty weather was a bit concerning.
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1 archive
Aug 12 2017
slowandsteady
avatar

 Routes 67
 Photos 966
 Triplogs 694

46 female
 Joined Jan 05 2012
 Phoenix,AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 12 2017
slowandsteady
Hiking11.90 Miles 1,448 AEG
Hiking11.90 Miles   5 Hrs   32 Mns   2.33 mph
1,448 ft AEG      25 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
BiFrost
John9L
Tough_Boots
_____________________
Aug 10 2017
outdoor_lover
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 Guides 6
 Routes 23
 Photos 11,802
 Triplogs 529

57 female
 Joined Aug 19 2011
 Scottsdale, AZ
Summer HAZFest 2017, AZ 
Summer HAZFest 2017, AZ
 
Car Camping avatar Aug 10 2017
outdoor_lover
Car Camping
Car Camping4 Days         
 no routes
1st trip
Partners 17 partners
HAZ - Event
amy1300
BiFrost
chumley
GrottoGirl
Hikergirl81
jacobemerick
John9L
LindaAnn
nonot
Oneradchic22
Oregon_Hiker
reynchr
RowdyandMe
rpaietta
te_wa
The_N
Tough_Boots
Better Late than Never I guess... :sweat:

I did 9 Hikes on this Trip, but I decided to just do the one Photoset with the Camping, Driving and Highlights from 8 Short Hikes and a longer one, that turned just a Tad Epic in the last 4 Miles... I went up on Thursday, and hit a couple of Areas in Flag before getting to Camp after Dark.... I headed for the Barn on Sunday, although from Camp, I think it took me about 3 1/2 Hours to get to Flag because of some pretty Sweet Storm and Sunset Action along the Way....

Chumley always puts on a Great Event and his Attention to Detail is Unrivaled. Nonot's Fires with Chumley's Wood Contributions did not Disappoint. It was Great to see Old Friends again and Meet some of the Newer HAZ Faces out there... Thanks for Organizing this Todd...

Awesome Weekend with Good People and Sweet Hikes and some Amazing Wildlife along the Way... What did the Fox say? "Na Na, Nana Na! You didn't get a Photo of me!" ](*,)
Flora
Flora
Common Mullein
Meteorology
Meteorology
Sunset
_____________________
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"
Jul 22 2017
Boothroyd
avatar

 Photos 26
 Triplogs 10

52 male
 Joined Oct 12 2013
 Flagstaff, AZ
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Jul 22 2017
Boothroyd
Hiking11.10 Miles 1,183 AEG
Hiking11.10 Miles   4 Hrs   45 Mns   2.47 mph
1,183 ft AEG      15 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Sorry to see about Joe's misfortune. I sincerely hope that he recovers soon and well. The sheep were down on Garland Prairie, so didn't need to contend with them, their poop, accompanying flies, gnats and sheep dogs. They've trampled the west side of KA Hill to the point of making it hard see the trail in places. Look for the cairns and log cut outs for guidance. Thankfully, I was able to run my dog most of the way off-leash and with no complications. While crossing Fire Road 139, I encountered a morbidly obese couple riding in a side-by-side ATV. I waved and smiled . . . they scowled at me and gunned their engine. Spotted a few mule deer does, and 3 osprey near Pomeroy Tanks. Was hoping to see a heron, too, but the osprey were very cool. Lots of dragon flies, those marvels of aeronautical engineering. Water was flowing, though not much going over Sycamore Falls. If one were to backpack through, there would be filterable water to choose from -- some better than others. Saw a couple of rock climbers at Sycamore Falls speed climbing one of the cracks. Pretty fun to watch . . . my rock climbing days are long over. A flock of vultures was hovering over the canyon area past the falls. One buzzed about 10 feet over my head and spooked me a little. The trails were quite muddy from the recent monsoons and accumulated mud on the soles of my boots made for slippery walking in the rocky places. Glad I had a trekking pole. The afternoon storm was rolling in just as I hit the Dow Springs area. I started early and got over KA Hill at the beginning. Not a big fan of being on the high point during a thunderstorm. As I neared my trail head, just past the Sawmill Site, I heard a cacophony of firearms maybe a couple of hundred yards away, which quickened my pace out of the area. Overall, a nice hike on a beautiful day.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
Saw a few penstemmons, some purple daisies, the occasional thistle, and a couple of century plants blooming. Poison ivy in the wetter drainages.
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1 archive
Jun 10 2017
The_Eagle
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 Guides 5
 Routes 793
 Photos 9,480
 Triplogs 1,146

64 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Jun 10 2017
The_Eagle
Hiking12.98 Miles 1,268 AEG
Hiking12.98 Miles   6 Hrs   14 Mns   3.26 mph
1,268 ft AEG   2 Hrs   15 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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joebartels
Tortoise_Hiker
The Sycamore Canyon Rim Loop has been on the list for quite awhile. Too short to justify the trip up there, this was to be hike 1 of 3 on the day. Denny, Joe and I started counterclockwise with the climb to KA Hill first, getting the majority of the elevation gain out early before the heat of the day.

It’s a steady climb to KA Hill, with some great views of “The Peaks” in Humpland to the NE.

Passing FR139, we spotted what we first thought was an Eagle in a nest. After numerous photos and discussions, definitely a pair of Osprey.

Pomeroy Tanks is a pretty area with a couple of...Tanks. As we entered, we noticed another group of hikers on top of the rim, entering from the other direction. In this canyon, is an obvious rock formation, a perfect point for a photo Op, like many of the Photo Ops we’ve had in the past. Joe scurried to the top of the 40’ rock, like he’d done a hundred times before. He sat on the top after saying.. “That was Steep”. We took photos, Joe started his way down, Denny and I went upon our business taking photos of stuff.

9:20 am and what happened next, changed many lives forever.

I heard an unnatural “Thump”. I turned around and Joe was no longer on the rock, nor could be seen. I ran over to the other side of the rock to find Joe face down, unconscious on the ground. Denny ran over and we called his name with no response. We gently poked him and he finally responded.

For the first time ever, I pushed the SPOT emergency button. 5 minutes later, my girlfriend and other emergency contact were notified that my button had been pushed and that there was an emergency in progress.

The other group that we’d seen on top of the rim had seen me run in the direction of Joe and came over to lend a very helpful hand. They got Joe turned over on his back and kept him calm. One of their group was on the cell phone with 911 talking through the events. Everyone took a role, between taking care of Joe, talking to 911, meeting responders at the TH etc.

Where we normally hike, there is never cell service, nor do we see others. We were so lucky to have both on this hike.

First to respond was the Coconino Sheriff, within the hour. Next was the 3 Paramedic’s. They took the vitals, administered pain meds, got him stabilized and got him on the board for transportation.

10 or so Search and Rescue showed up next. The choppers showed up as they were determining the best way to get him out. It was decided to Short Haul him with the bigger chopper, to a chopper waiting on the ground, for Transport him to Flagstaff.

Video :next: [ youtube video ]

From the incident, to arrival in Flagstaff, was right at about 2 hours. It seemed like forever, but for something like this, I think was actually pretty good.

Denny and I still had 7 miles to go to get back to the truck. We actually needed this time to decompress a bit, knowing that by the time we finished and got to Flagstaff, that maybe we might know something more.

When we got to Flag, they had him in for an MRI. When done, they had him heavily sedated. Later that night, after stabilizing him, he was flown to Phoenix, where he could be better cared for.


Cut to today, 13 days later. It is more or less a miracle the progress he’s made from what we saw in Flagstaff and the day after in Phoenix. Two surgeries completed and most devices have been removed. He’s talking, joking, and even took his first steps today. He could be released to a rehab facility soon.

It’s going to be a while before I get my hiking partner back though.

If any of the people that aided us in the field read this, please PM me. I need to talk to you and thank you for all the help you gave us in the field. I’m sorry, but Jody “Joe” is the only name I can remember, and I think he was from Mesa.

Joe’s going to be down for awhile and will need more medical attention and physical therapy.

Please, if you feel it in your heart, hit the DONATE button at the bottom of the home page to help support his recovery.

A huge Thanks to Denny and all the others that have helped in Joe's recovery to date.

Andthanks all for your thoughts and prayers.
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There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
1 archive
Mar 12 2017
MountainMatt
avatar

 Guides 3
 Routes 192
 Photos 3,237
 Triplogs 490

28 male
 Joined Jan 24 2016
 Arizona
Big Spring Canyon, AZ 
Big Spring Canyon, AZ
 
Canyoneering avatar Mar 12 2017
MountainMatt
Canyoneering4.01 Miles 1,298 AEG
Canyoneering4.01 Miles   7 Hrs   5 Mns   1.04 mph
1,298 ft AEG   3 Hrs   14 Mns Break25 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
First time I was at "Paradise Forks" with @jonnybackpack he made a comment about how there are probably 3 more "Sycamore Falls" downstream somewhere.
Well that comment alone and my ever so eager curiosity led me to another night of extensive map research and sure enough a few miles downstream there is a definitive drop off and cliff band area.

I planned out my proposed route months ago but just now put it into affect since I was in my hometown town visiting family and escaping the unwanted desert heat.
Also because I figured this will probably be the last time Sycamore Canyon runs steady and strong the remainder of the year, monsoons don't push nearly as much water into this place as snowmelt does after years of examination.

I marked my hike to start at the Double O Tanks which I assumed was a random forest road but it ended up being the official "Sycamore Vista TH" which is part of the Sycamore Rim Loop Trail.
I stayed on trail for maybe a half mile or so and then picked one of the few breaks of the top layer of cliff and began my descent down into the unknown.
The canyon in this area is built like a three tiered cake, you have the tip top which is the rim trail protected by miles of cliffs underneath, then you have this walk-able mid layer which just below it there is an almost impassable cliff-band that literally had only one non technical break that leads to the base which is the canyon bottom with all of the goodies.

I love a good bushwhack but I won't lie to you this descent/ascent was misery, dense strands of cats-claw and scrub oak lined the near vertical cliff sides and the canyon bottom was jam packed with hellish amounts of blackberry thickets that got the best of me.
The waterfall was unfortunately not a rival to the two at "Paradise Forks" but the massive coliseum like cliff-sides and large swimming pool made up for it.
Not to mention the weather up north this weekend was perfection, I'm talking almost warm I laid down on a rock sun bathing for awhile and was in hog heaven with the sunny skies and a roaring waterfall.

As mentioned before the hike out sucked but kind of gave me a workout/ runners high since it was such an exercise!
I believe it was 600ft of gain in a little less than 1/2 mile which in the open wouldn't be too bad but since this was done while bushwhacking through dense vegetation it was truly a whole other beast.
[ youtube video ]

I was greeted up top with a soft pink sunset and a quiet moonlight ride home to cap of a great weekend of exploring in two completely different climate zones, oh how I love you Arizona!

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Double Tanks 76-100% full 76-100% full
Only saw one tank and it is completely full with a stream running into it and comes with an army of frogs croaking away.
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http://www.mattwhelanphotography.com/
4 archives
Oct 02 2016
te_wa
avatar

 Guides 3
 Photos 1,040
 Triplogs 313

48 male
 Joined Aug 22 2003
 Mesa
Sycamore Canyon Rim LoopFlagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 02 2016
te_wa
Hiking11.10 Miles 1,183 AEG
Hiking11.10 Miles
1,183 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
t'was my 3rd backpacking trip, and my 1rst solo backpack - sycamore rim loop. i decided after 17 years i'd go check out the area once more. kinda romantic, i guess.
anyway, saw some things that i did not notice before.. or don't remember, but most of the scenery seemed familiar. for instance, i wanted to go up to one of the tanks to re-visit that tiny aspen "grove?" that hugged the southwest bank of tank # 4 (i'll call it) which has seemingly died, the old trees are lifeless but have now entered the circle, as juvenile 7' aspens are springing up amongst their corpses full of shimmering pride.

i also don't recall seeing so much trail exposed to interesting views, so that was a nice touch.. as if it were my fist time.
round the bend i found a nice stand of ponderosa trapped on a knoll between baby-creeks at the last, northernmost pond. fire out, hammock up, eyes shut. took the road back to the car, as i can't say climbing knob hill was interesting enough. ended with a home-brewed oatmeal stout before i had a quick snack, looked around, and headed home.

*there were some water holes and trickles in both shallow canyons along the rim trail. double tanks has a few clear pools.
*the strangest sound i've ever heard in 18 years of backpacking: something was coming up canyon near start of the hike, just before the old sawmill. sounded like a million angry hornets, and i had to stop in my tracks to figure out where it was coming from, and how fast. it was way too fast for any natural produced sound.. but in a few seconds i saw a tiny buzz-saw quadcopter screaming down canyon when it formed a well-controlled loose turn around me nearly at 100' high. SO... i think using a drone w/ a camera might just be the newest, bestest way to search for big game during hunting season. or, google maps has stepped up their game!
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
very few gamble oaks are turning. maybe two weeks' will peak.
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squirrel!
average hiking speed 2.32 mph
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WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

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