username
X
password
register
for free!
help
GuidesRoutes
 
Photosets
 
 Comments
triplogs   photosets   labels comments more
Vineyard Trail #131 - 18 members in 52 triplogs have rated this an average 3.8 ( 1 to 5 best )
1, 2, 3  Next
52 triplogs
login for filter options
Feb 06 2021
avatar

 Routes 104
 Photos 1
 Triplogs 79

41 female
 Joined Oct 21 2016
 Tempe, AZ
Cottonwood #120 Vineyard #131 Trails, AZ 
Cottonwood #120 Vineyard #131 Trails, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 06 2021
MAPTriplogs 79
Hiking16.05 Miles 2,957 AEG
Hiking16.05 Miles   7 Hrs   50 Mns   2.10 mph
2,957 ft AEG      11 Mns Break
 
no photosets
1st trip
Another successful piecing together of AZT passages to create a less difficult day hike!

Drive: We dropped a vehicle at Mills Ridge Trailhead (narrow & steep drive with some big drops on either side but the road is very smooth & probably fine for a car) and drove to our starting TH on FR 83. Don't know if the FR 83 TH has a name but we parked at the water tank where FR 83 makes a T with another road. FR 83 goes through a sandy wash & has a few steep inclines & rough areas. Probably HC/4WD is best for that road. It was exactly 2 hours from Tempe to Mills Ridge TH and then approximately another 45 min from Mills Ridge to our start on FR 83.

Hike: Cottonwood Creek is absolutely beautiful! Flowing water through most of the creek we hiked. Mounds of vine (cat's claw maybe?), lots of vegetation, & birds singing all around. We loved this foresty area. The AZT #19 trail heading down to the Roosevelt Lake Bridge seemed to never end. It winds in & out & gives spectacular views. We walked across the bridge which was really cool but also funny to be hiking on a highway all of the sudden.

Took a short lunch at the pull-off at the AZT #20 TH & headed up AZT #20. And up. And up. And up. This part of AZT #20 is completely burned. It is unique & amazing to see the yuccas looking like grilled pineapples, the new growth everywhere, and the dark burned brown contrasted with the bright blue of the lake. The views along this trail are spectacular pretty much the whole time: Roosevelt Lake + Apache Lake + the Superstitions across the lake! Oh, does anyone know what the small metal tower with a screen looking thing is on Vineyard Mountain? We happened to run into friends we knew while checking that thing out which was fun! Should've asked them.

Glad we were able to break AZT Passages #19 & #20 up like this! Hopefully we will get to hike the first part of Passage #19 later in the month & them we will have completed the hottest central passages! :y:
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
_____________________
Feb 02 2021
avatar

 Guides 3
 Routes 195
 Photos 3,493
 Triplogs 527

male
 Joined Jan 24 2016
 Arizona
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 02 2021
MountainMattTriplogs 527
Hiking4.46 Miles 1,395 AEG
Hiking4.46 Miles   2 Hrs   42 Mns   1.80 mph
1,395 ft AEG      13 Mns Break40 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
After driving past this TH for years it always sparked my interest from the epic Bartels thumbnail scene on the description and this day it fit the bill perfect for a little late afternoon stroll.
Lugged up the camera gear just in case but the fire scar is pretty severe, not much left to photograph besides the occasional patches of healthy desert life here and there.
Can’t complain on the views though, between a snow capped Four Peaks and eagle eye views of the lakes I was digging it.
Turned around at Vineyard Mountain and made it back just after sunset with enjoyable temps and a quiet desert.
_____________________
Apr 11 2020
avatar

 Routes 165
 Photos 2,907
 Triplogs 513

63 male
 Joined Aug 16 2009
 Mesa,AZ
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 11 2020
hikerdwTriplogs 513
Hiking14.23 Miles 3,359 AEG
Hiking14.23 Miles   5 Hrs   50 Mns   2.80 mph
3,359 ft AEG      45 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Looking for a destination to hike to from the Vineyard Trail I saw where @Hansenaz posted a triplog a few years back for a small ruin site off the Four Peaks Trail so that worked.

Arrived to the parking off HWY188 at 6:30 and had boots on the ground by 6:45. Perfect weather for this hike, mostly cloudy, with below average temps. I was expecting this to be a constant uphill climb, and it was, but just for the first short 2 miles, then it really levelled out, with a final push to the Mills Ridge TH. The mile we hiked on the Four Peaks Trail was a climb, but short lived.

The ruin site was small but we both found it interesting. Spent some time looking for pottery pieces and checking out the rock walls. Once done we enjoyed lunch and took in the BIG views in all directions.

On the return trip the sky blackened, the wind kicked up, and it started to drizzle, but it all stopped as quickly as it started. Didn't see any others until we were within a few miles of the trailhead, but even then, not too crowded. Saw one fox, a small snake, and a gila monster.

The Vineyard Trail exceeded my expectations as I really enjoyed this hike.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial
Lots of color.
_____________________
Expect to self rescue
Mar 28 2020
avatar

 Routes 26
 Triplogs 275

36 male
 Joined Apr 14 2019
 Tempe
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 28 2020
richvoskoTriplogs 275
Hiking12.20 Miles 2,425 AEG
Hiking12.20 Miles
2,425 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
2 archives
Feb 16 2019
avatar

 Guides 5
 Routes 54
 Photos 2,412
 Triplogs 202

56 male
 Joined Oct 07 2017
 Chandler, AZ
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 16 2019
YoderTriplogs 202
Hiking11.80 Miles 2,657 AEG
Hiking11.80 Miles   5 Hrs   18 Mns   2.54 mph
2,657 ft AEG      39 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Last year I did this hike(2018.03.11) with a friend it was raining, so my wife bailed. It turned out to be a great trip and got some good photos, although you couldn't see very far in the landscape because we were in the clouds.

This time with the wife, it was mostly cloudy with occasional sun-breaks.

Since it was the weekend, we figured we would run into a few folks, but glad to say we only saw one other person the whole time. :y:

This hike has some great views.

We didn't quite make it to the end, wife said she was done. Can't complain, I'm just happy she lets me out of the cage and takes me for a walk on occasion :)

Things are very green there. We may be in for a great wild flower season this year.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
Things are getting set, and there are some early flowers starting already.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Theodore Roosevelt Lake 76-100% full 76-100% full
_____________________
J. Yoder
Nov 23 2018
avatar

 Routes 148
 Triplogs 152

33 male
 Joined Sep 05 2014
 Phoenix, AZ
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 23 2018
FrostshocknoobTriplogs 152
Hiking12.22 Miles 2,678 AEG
Hiking12.22 Miles   5 Hrs   57 Mns   2.31 mph
2,678 ft AEG      40 Mns Break
 
no photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
Mar 28 2018
avatar

 Guides 8
 Routes 12
 Photos 1,313
 Triplogs 490

57 male
 Joined Nov 15 2005
 Jackson, CA
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 28 2018
toddakTriplogs 490
Hiking18.50 Miles 4,500 AEG
Hiking18.50 Miles   8 Hrs      2.31 mph
4,500 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Partners none no partners
NOBO, huge climb and views, great trail conditions. Exited down OF123, mtn biked back to start. Other than the lakes in the distance, didn't see any water.
_____________________
1 archive
Mar 15 2018
avatar

 Guides 70
 Routes 651
 Photos 10,844
 Triplogs 706

male
 Joined Jan 07 2017
 Fountain Hills,
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 15 2018
DixieFlyerTriplogs 706
Hiking12.40 Miles 2,900 AEG
Hiking12.40 Miles   5 Hrs   49 Mns   2.77 mph
2,900 ft AEG   1 Hour   20 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I had never heard of this trail until I saw a trip report on HAZ the other day, so naturally Tracie and I had to go check it out. This trail is perhaps the easiest to follow trail in a wilderness area that I have ever seen. I had a GPS track and there were numerous cairns along the way, but neither the GPS track or the cairns were needed.

Our route went from the Vineyard TH near Roosevelt Dam to the Mills Ridge TH and back. There was a fair amount of elevation gain, with about 1/3 of the gain being in the first 1.25 miles. The scenery was nice, but you were totally exposed to the sun on the entire route, so I would not want to do this one in warm/hot weather. We stopped along the way to take a look at a wildlife watering system that was in a metal building about 1/4 mile off of the trail.

I would likely do this hike a little more often if it was closer to my house -- it took about an hour and a half to get there from my house in Fountain Hills. For about the same amount of time I could be doing hiking in the Rim up past Payson, and those hikes are better than this one imho. The next time that I am in this area, I will probably take FR 429 off of Highway 188 and drive to the Mills Ridge TH, and from there hike to Buckhorn Mountain.

We only encountered one other person on the trail -- a guy backpacking who said that he was on his way to Utah (he said that he started his backpack in Mexico).
_____________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. -- Edward Abbey
1 archive
Mar 11 2018
avatar

 Guides 5
 Routes 54
 Photos 2,412
 Triplogs 202

56 male
 Joined Oct 07 2017
 Chandler, AZ
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 11 2018
YoderTriplogs 202
Hiking12.30 Miles 2,799 AEG
Hiking12.30 Miles   4 Hrs   40 Mns   2.92 mph
2,799 ft AEG      27 Mns Break5 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Rainy day, quite enjoyable hiking up in the clouds. Sprinkled most of the hike.. great stuff, got some good photographs.
_____________________
J. Yoder
Jan 28 2018
avatar

 Routes 148
 Triplogs 152

33 male
 Joined Sep 05 2014
 Phoenix, AZ
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 28 2018
FrostshocknoobTriplogs 152
Hiking8.73 Miles 1,968 AEG
Hiking8.73 Miles   4 Hrs   30 Mns   2.08 mph
1,968 ft AEG      18 Mns Break
 
no photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
Dec 31 2017
avatar

 Guides 43
 Routes 149
 Photos 22,416
 Triplogs 2,280

72 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
AZT #20 to Mills TH Shuttle, AZ 
AZT #20 to Mills TH Shuttle, AZ
 
Scenic Drive avatar Dec 31 2017
CannondaleKidTriplogs 2,280
Scenic Drive20.60 Miles 4,083 AEG
Scenic Drive20.60 Miles   3 Hrs   40 Mns   12.36 mph
4,083 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Partners partners
trixiec
2nd day in a row I'm providing Tracey with shuttle-driver service.

This trip will be as originally planned for yesterday, dropping Tracey off at Vineyard/AZT #20 TH and pick her up at the Mills TH. With such a short distance between drop-off and pick-up spots, I decided to check out a few more Forest Roads in the area.

I'd never driven Forest Road 647 so I figured that would be a good start. It turned out to be an enjoyable & scenic half-hour loop around the perimeter of the Three Bar Wildlife Enclosure.
(At this time the enclosure is open to allow deer as well as predators to roam in/out at will)

After that nice loop, I filmed the drive to Mills TH on Forest Road 429. With plenty of time before Tracey would arrive, I drove back to Forest road 336 and followed it to the concurrent couple hundred feet with AZT #20, where I would wait until Tracey arrived. I wasn't there long before she showed up, at which time she said a quick Hi! and kept on going while I drove back to Mills TH. She was moving at a pretty good clip so I didn't have long to wait.

Another nice day for scenic drives while Tracey got in her last hike of the year... ending right at 600 miles, a bit shy of her 650 mile goal. It probably didn't help matters that I've been out-of-action since early November.

The GoPro video is just over 11 minutes long so feel free to skip ahead:
Drive from AZ 188 to Mills TH on Forest Road 429
_____________________
CannondaleKid
2 archives
Dec 31 2017
avatar

 Guides 3
 Routes 22
 Photos 2,216
 Triplogs 237

60 male
 Joined Apr 22 2012
 Fountain Hills,
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 31 2017
KBKBTriplogs 237
Hiking6.19 Miles 1,624 AEG
Hiking6.19 Miles   4 Hrs   15 Mns   2.06 mph
1,624 ft AEG   1 Hour   15 Mns Break24 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
On New Year's Eve, my wife and daughter joined me for an out-and-back hike of part of the Vineyard Trail.

Back in March, 2017, I hiked it from the Mills Ridge Trailhead, but we only made it out to nearly the five mile point on the trail, so I had not yet seen the other end of the trail.

This time, we started from the parking area at the northwest end of Roosevelt Lake Bridge. It gains elevation quickly - my daughter told me that it reminded her of the Moab Rim Trail which claims to gain one thousand feet in one mile. I don't think that claim is accurate - when I've done the Moab Rim Trail, I think the gain in the first mile was only a bit over eight hundred feet. The Vineyard trail is very close - I think it gains somewhere around 700 feet in the first mile.

At about 1.35 miles in, my daughter and I took a brief excursion to better see the dam and bridge.

Continuing on, we eventually saw the other side (than what we're accustomed to seeing) of Four Peaks.

Off in the distance, less than a quarter mile to the north off of the trail, we saw what looked like a long low shack with a corrugated metal roof and siding. I had seen this structure on my previous hike of the Vineyard Trail, but did not know for sure what it was. There's no road or obvious trail leading to it. My best guess at the time was that it was a shelter for sheep or perhaps cattle.

When we got close, I took another side trip to see if I could figure out the purpose of the structure. As I approached the structure, I found that the way got easier as there were a number of old animal trails leading me there. Outside of the structure, I found a small watering trough capable of allowing up to two or three cows to drink at the same time. It was fed water via an underground pipe. The trough was dry which indicates that the water source has been shut off.

The shed-like building is perhaps 10-12 feet from the trough and contained only two openings, a small window and a door, both of which were just left of the center of the structure. Looking in the window, I saw an old and probably non-functional lawn chair. Beside it was a heap of dirt. At this point, I was still thinking that it must be some kind of structure for sheltering animals and was surprised at the unevenness of the dirt floor. Also, there was no smell of dried manure, which was what I was expecting. Opening the half-door revealed more dirt and a water tank to the right. I later found out that there are actually two large water tanks near the center of the structure. Most of the space in the wings however is empty. As I walked around the structure to see if there were any other openings, I noticed that roof, while largely flat on top, sloped towards the center from each end of the building. I then noticed that a trough covered with coarse wire mesh ran the width of the building at the center. Peering inside the building again, I found that a pipe led from the end of the trough into the two water tanks.

So... it's a water collection and storage system, presumably used by those ranching this area for providing water to their livestock. Rainwater lands on the corrugated metal roof, flows into the trough at the center of the structure, and then flows into the tanks. From there, an underground pipe supplies water to the small watering trough that I saw outside the structure.

The water tanks appeared intact - no bullet holes - so presumably it could still be used. I would guess that the tanks might even have a fair amount of water in them.

Our hike back to the car was uneventful. The day had warmed up somewhat and we noticed that the lake appeared much bluer than it did in the morning.
_____________________
Nov 24 2017
avatar

 Routes 2
 Photos 29
 Triplogs 27

40 female
 Joined Aug 22 2014
 Phoenix, AZ
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 24 2017
LumberjillTriplogs 27
Hiking8.25 Miles 2,457 AEG
Hiking8.25 Miles   5 Hrs   22 Mns   1.93 mph
2,457 ft AEG   1 Hour   6 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
This one has been on my "to-hike" list for a long time so I decided this would be my Opt Outside hike on Black Friday this year.

The trailhead is a bit hidden because it's a bit tucked away, so it took us a few minutes to find it even though there is a big Arizona Trail sign pointing right to it. But once we found it, we were off. And up. And up. And up. That first 1.5 miles is steep and long. Then, it levels out and you look around and realize what incredible views surround you. Of course, you can see Roosevelt Lake at the start of the hike, a great view of the Four Peaks, then a great view of the dam, and further in, you can see the Salt River surrounded by mountains. We hiked along, being awed by everything we could see. We were fascinated by the rock slides and lava flows we could see on the surrounding mountains. Moving past the volcanic activity, we made our way down to a grassy area, where eventually we intersected with a forest road.
We stopped here for lunch and made this our turnaround point, as the weather was still pretty warm and there is not much shade on this hike. As we were headed back, we noticed a few different spots where wildlife had clearly bedded down, so we theorized that we saw a deer bed and a coyote bed (the coyote left some fur behind). I bet that there is a lot of wildlife in this area, since it's close to water and not very populated. We had the trail to ourselves with the exception of one twosome we saw as we neared the trailhead on our way back. As we were making our descent back to the trail head, I felt validated at the number of breaks I took on the way up - that incline is steep! This is a great hike with a lot to offer.
_____________________
Mar 17 2017
avatar

 Guides 3
 Routes 22
 Photos 2,216
 Triplogs 237

60 male
 Joined Apr 22 2012
 Fountain Hills,
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 17 2017
KBKBTriplogs 237
Hiking10.00 Miles 1,703 AEG
Hiking10.00 Miles   5 Hrs   41 Mns   1.76 mph
1,703 ft AEG25 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Starting from the Mills Ridge Trailhead, I led a group of nine (counting myself) to a point nearly 5 miles out where we got good views of Theodore Roosevelt Lake and dam. Expansive views are available along the entire length and route finding was easy.

The only slightly tricky spot was when we got to FS Road 336. The sign there indicates that you should turn left, following the road, and that is correct. However, there appears to be a continuation of the trail across the road, which is not correct. The trail follows the road for approximately 0.15 miles before becoming trail again. It's well marked with signs at both intersections.

We saw many wildflowers on this hike - I took more photos than normal.
Named place
Named place [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Dutchwoman Butte
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial
We saw: blackfoot daisy, lupine, Mexican poppy, deer vetch, desert chicory, bluedick, white flower borage, mariposa lily, hedgehog blossoms, rock live-forever, fleabane, phacelia, and others too.
_____________________
Mar 04 2017
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 105
 Photos 1,740
 Triplogs 228

30 male
 Joined Feb 26 2015
 Gilbert AZ
AZT Spring Break 2017, AZ 
AZT Spring Break 2017, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Mar 04 2017
DallinWTriplogs 228
Backpack159.40 Miles 34,237 AEG
Backpack159.40 Miles9 Days         
34,237 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Fauna
Fauna [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Gila Monster
Culture
Culture [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Dream

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Amethyst West Drainage at Trail #130 Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Cienega Creek @ AZT Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Cottonwood Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Better flow as you head down the drainage.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 East Fork Sabino Canyon Heavy flow Heavy flow

dry Granite Spring Dry Dry

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

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

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Lemmon Creek @ WOR #44 Medium flow Medium flow

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

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

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Pine Creek at Reavis Gap #117 Medium flow Medium flow


water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Reavis Creek at Gap Trail #117 Heavy flow Heavy flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Rincon Creek @ AZT Medium flow Medium flow

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

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Sycamore Reservoir 51-75% full 51-75% full

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max The Lake 51-75% full 51-75% full

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Upper Molino Creek Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Walnut Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
_____________________
5 archives
Apr 30 2016
avatar

 Guides 169
 Routes 148
 Photos 5,683
 Triplogs 1,785

45 male
 Joined Apr 12 2004
 Oro Valley, AZ
Tonto National Monument - Lower DwellingsGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 30 2016
PrestonSandsTriplogs 1,785
Hiking2.00 Miles 550 AEG
Hiking2.00 Miles
550 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Stopped to see Tonto National Monument on the way to Tonto Basin. Beautiful, cool, cloudy day. An excited group of Safford school kids were heading out as we headed in. Cool place to visit as always. Did a short hike on the Vineyard/AZT before heading north to show Shauna my grandparent's old place in Punkin Center, and then up into the Sierra Ancha to camp out.
_____________________
"As soon as I can I’m sneaking back in them mountains..." -Johnny Paycheck
Apr 09 2016
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 105
 Photos 1,740
 Triplogs 228

30 male
 Joined Feb 26 2015
 Gilbert AZ
AZT: Roosevelt to Washington Park, AZ 
AZT: Roosevelt to Washington Park, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Apr 09 2016
DallinWTriplogs 228
Backpack132.20 Miles 26,979 AEG
Backpack132.20 Miles7 Days         
26,979 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
April 9th
Miles: 19
AEG: 6,413 ft

We started the climb from the 188 around 7:30 AM. The goal for the day was to make it to Pigeon Springs. The weather was great, and the views of Roosevelt Lake got more spectacular as we climbed out of the basin. After taking a break at Buckhorn Spring, the trail climbs relentlessly before topping out and contouring the mountain.

Eventually we turned a corner and BAM!, the four craggy peaks were staring us right in the face. Quite the view! The trail through the Four Peaks passage is very well maintained, except for a small stretch where we were pushing through overgrowth that nearly obscures the trail. Despite the large swaths of burned forest, this passage was one of my favorite so far. Eventually we reached Pigeon Springs and found a relatively flat spot to set up our tents.

April 10th
Miles: 19
AEG: 2,196 ft

The morning began with a clear sky. After packing up the gear we headed for Pigeon Springs Rd to begin the long road walk. I'm usually not a fan of road walks, but this was an exception. There were great views on either side of the Superstitions, Sierra Ancha, and Lake Roosevelt. The immediate area itself was very beautiful as well. Around 10 AM we could see clouds beginning to build on top of Browns Peak, and a storm hitting the Supes.

We stopped to take out the rain jackets and a white mini-van rolled up and asked if this road would take them all the way back to the 87. I pulled out my map and told them it looked like the road ended well before reaching the 87 and that they needed to turn around and take El Oso or the other forest road. The wife sitting in the passenger seat seemed concerned that we were about to be backpacking out in the rain. :roll: By 11 AM it was lightly raining, which was initially quite exciting (I needed to test the rain gear anyway).

Just as we reached the Boulder Creek drainage the storm began to give us its all. Heavy rain, wind, and thunder! By the time we reached Sunflower, the trail was a muddy slip and slide, my phone was soaked and unresponsive (may it RIP ](*,) ), and we were slightly chilled.

We waited under the 87 underpass for my brother to arrive, who was picking us up so I could take an exam for an online class I'm taking before returning to the trail the next day.

April 11th
Miles: 12
AEG: 2,643 ft

After finishing up my exam, we were back on trail around 1 PM. Under the 87, we did some last minute gear prep before heading out and ran into three other hikers, Giltch, Kegel, and Minus. They were 17 days into their thru-hike and were excited to get into Pine for some much needed beer. We were all aiming for McFarland Canyon for the night.

We started up Saddle Mountain and enjoyed all the green scenery in the area. Just before reaching camp, we passed the half way mark for the AZT and celebrated with the thru-hikers before settling down for the night in McFarland Canyon.

April 12th
Miles: 21
AEG: 5,249 ft

The thru-hikers were up and leaving camp just as we were beginning to pack up. We weren't sure if we would ever see them again. The trail gets a little hard to follow just after McFarland Canyon to Thicket Spring. The Guthooks app says to head straight up a wash but apparently there is an alternative route that is clear of brush and well defined that you can take at the first junction past McFarland.

Once we reached the junction for the Peeley TH we stopped to take a break and ran into Joe, a gentleman I had met at a trail maintenance event about a month earlier. Quite the coincidence, if we would have left a minute earlier we probably would have never seen him. He was meeting up with another fellow to remove some downed trees along the trail.

The views along the Mazatzal Divide from Peeley to Y-Bar were my favorite for the entire trip. The rugged peaks of the Mazatzals and expansive views on either side were exciting to see. We ran into Minus again at the Bear Spring junction taking a lunch break. After taking our own lunch break at the spring, we headed for Horse Camp Seep.

As we approached Horse Camp Seep, we ran into the three thru-hikers again. There was another hour or so of light, so they continued on, we decided to call it a day where there was water. Horse Camp Seep was a sweet spot and had great camping.

April 13th
Miles: 18
AEG: 2,907 ft

The goal for the day was to make it to the East Verde River, a relatively easy day that was mostly downhill. We made our way along the Divide trail and passed "The Park", an inviting stand of pines and great campsites. We stopped to take a lunch break at the Red Hills seeps. From here the trail descends steeply to the East Verde River. Not very fun for the knees.

We camped just across the river and enjoyed the warmest night of the trip. We were now done with the Mazzies, and I felt the proposed "overgrowth" was kind of blown out of proportion, or there has been a lot of trail work in the past couple of months. Probably a bit of both. ;) I never felt like the trail was hard to find (except for the stretch between McFarland and Thicket) or that I had to deal with excessive brush that I wouldn't expect on most wilderness trails.

April 14th
Miles: 23
AEG: 4,196 ft

With burgers and beer on our minds, we got up early to make it into Pine with sufficient time to hit up THAT brewery and the market. The rocks along Whiterock and Hardscrabble Mesas were annoying and it felt like I was constantly stubbing my toes or rolling my ankle. Otherwise the area is quite beautiful and welcoming. The rocks put these two passages high on my list of "one and done" passages.

We reached Pine around 5pm with plenty of time to get burgers and beer. Lo and behold, we run into Minus, Kegel, and Giltch at the brewery along with another thru-hiker, Thomas, who was taking a zero in town. We joined them and enjoyed the comradery. Thomas decided to join us at camp for the night near the Pine TH while the others reserved the cabin in the back.

April 15th
Miles: 17
AEG: 3,303 ft

We woke up with frost all over our gear. :yuck: After packing up, Thomas headed for the Highline and we headed for breakfast at the Early Bird. Just before we finished up eating we ran into Minus who was getting some breakfast himself.

We headed for the Highline. It was nice to be climbing on a well graded trail with less rocks, especially because a hole was beginning to develop in my right shoe. I could feel every rock under my foot on that spot.

At Red Rock Spring we made a quick stop and finished off the last bit of the Arizona Trail Ale we picked up the night before at the market.

Once we reached Webber Creek we caught up with Thomas who was drying out all his gear. We stopped to take a break, and eventually Minus came strolling down the trail to join us. Minus decided to hike with us for a stretch after the break. The Rim gets right up in your face along this stretch and red dirt contrasting with the green pines and cedars made for great scenery.

We were about 9 miles from the finish and a little antsy to finish up. Eventually Minus stopped to take a lunch break and we continued on after filtering some water. Now with only 5 miles left, we kicked it into high gear and made for the Washington Park TH. Clouds started to build along the rim.

We reached the trailhead and got ready to hunker down for a few hours of inclement weather before our ride would arrive. However, after a few snow flurries, the clouds broke. Eventually Thomas and the other three thru-hikers caught up with us, we exchanged information, and said our goodbyes. All of them were very enthusiastic about Arizona and couldn't stop commenting on the diversity of the state and how we had a pretty cool home.

---------------------------------------

Besides my foot issue due to my failing shoe on the last day, I felt great this entire trip. I never woke up sore or feeling exhausted. I listened to my body, and I was proactive about keeping my feet and knees happy. It really paid off and made the trip that much more enjoyable.

This concludes all of Southern and Central Arizona passages for me. I'm looking forward to the easy walking on the plateau to the UT border!
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
Lots of lupine in the middle elevations, not much at the highest and lowest elevations.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Bear Spring - Fisher Gallon per minute Gallon per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Chilson Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Pools and light flow in drainage just south of spring.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max East Fork of Chase Creek @ Highline Light flow Light flow

dry Granite Spring Dry Dry

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Hopi Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Flowing across the trail.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Horse Camp Seep Quart per minute Quart per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max North Sycamore Creek @ Highline Medium flow Medium flow

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

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Pigeon Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Flowing over the cement box.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Polk Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Flowing across the trail, really muddy.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Pool East of 4264 - Boulder Creek Light flow Light flow
Pools with light flow in some areas.

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

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Shake Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Great flow, great water.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Upper McFarland @ #88/95 Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Webber Creek @ Highline Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Whiterock Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Best water of the trip.
_____________________
1 archive
Mar 13 2016
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 162
 Photos 1,542
 Triplogs 1,436

62 male
 Joined Oct 17 2008
 Phoenix, AZ
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 13 2016
rcorfmanTriplogs 1,436
Hiking3.10 Miles 1,144 AEG
Hiking3.10 Miles   1 Hour   29 Mns   2.55 mph
1,144 ft AEG      16 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I started at the Vineyard trailhead and hiked up to the Microwave Reflector. The reason for this hike was to find geocache, Jane and Steve Memorial Cache. I was the first finder of it. It turns out that Steve Chalmers worked for SRP and blazed the trail up to the reflector. He sure made a steep trail.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
_____________________
Go find a LonelyCache
1 archive
Mar 13 2016
avatar

 Routes 67
 Photos 966
 Triplogs 694

48 female
 Joined Jan 05 2012
 Phoenix,AZ
Vineyard Trail #131Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 13 2016
slowandsteadyTriplogs 694
Hiking10.01 Miles 1,847 AEG
Hiking10.01 Miles   3 Hrs   55 Mns   2.74 mph
1,847 ft AEG      16 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I started at Mills Trailhead, and hiked down five miles and then turned back up.

I met PJHikes on my way down, nice to meet you Pam!

I kept thinking Karl and Lee would be passing me at any moment. Turns out I had plenty of time to do the whole trail, but I took the lazy route.

Karl and Lee made it to Mills and loaded up on salt and sugar and then were off to hike until dark.
_____________________
2 archives
Mar 12 2016
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 395
 Photos 9,008
 Triplogs 1,068

52 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
AZT Supes-Mazatzal, AZ 
AZT Supes-Mazatzal, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Mar 12 2016
BiFrostTriplogs 1,068
Backpack107.24 Miles 21,444 AEG
Backpack107.24 Miles3 Days   9 Hrs   56 Mns   
21,444 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Joined FOTG for some AZT sections starting at Picketpost TH heading northbound. He planned to do 6 days ending at Pine TH but I couldn't get all the time off work so hiked 4 days with him to Peeley TH before parting ways.

Day 1 - 30.04 miles 5,846 AEG

We started at Picketpost TH on the Reavis Canyon AZT section # 18. The first 10 miles is mostly desert walking but quickly changes once the trail drops into Whitford and then Reavis Canyon. There was water in several places between mile 10 and 13 of the section. Spring time was in full effect in the canyon with assorted wildflowers, lush green grass, and cottonwoods already filled out.

From there it was up Montana Mtn and quickly bagged Montana which is only tenth of a mile off the AZT. Then on the road over to Rogers Trough TH. No time to stop we continued on down Rogers Canyon and up to Reavis Saddle. Heading into Reavis Ranch area we passed probably 25 or 30 people camping along the valley. We headed up Reavis Gap trail and didn't see anyone after that making our way over to Pine Creek and then Walnut Spring which would be our camp for the night as it was getting totally dark.

Day 2 - 25.92 miles 6,045 AEG

Earlier start at 610 heading out across Two Bar Ridge in the Supes with great views of Four Peaks and Sierra Ancha. This section is rough by AZT standards but we made it past Pinyon Mtn and started the long descent down Cottonwood Canyon. Arriving at Cottonwood Spring we found good water and filled up. Cottonwood had several more good water options with pools and flowing water for about a mile after the spring. Once at the end of Cottonwood Canyon the trail exits onto road and then single track again as it traverses above Roosevelt Lake. This section is deceiving in that there is significant AEG and mileage added because of all the drainages and ridges that it crosses in route to Roosevelt Bridge. This part dragged on but we made the bridge and with no fan fare we headed straight up the hill on start of Four Peaks AZT #20. Running behind schedule it's is a tough climb up to Mills Ridge TH. Fortunately Kathy was nice enough to meet us at Mills Ridge TH with some water and snacks:-) We rested for almost an hour enjoying the visit before heading up the trail in search of a camp spot which ended up being Buckhorn Creek. To our surprise the creek was flowing and turned out to be a great camp spot.

Day 3 - 31.31 miles 4,756 AEG

Longest day for mileage so we broke camp 6 on the dot. Still had a lot of AEG to climb up Four Peaks but the views of the lake with sunrise were really awesome! Eventually we made Chillcut Saddle where the trail begins to traverse below Four Peaks. Some of the coolest views and hiking on all of the AZT. We traversed for about 6 miles seeing some water at Alder Saddle trail junction before dropping down on the north side of Four Peaks. Once the north side there was significant water with Shake Spring being the first one crossed. Shake was pretty much a river flowing very strong and we could still see a lot of snow up on Browns Peaks. After that there were at least 3 other drainages that had good flow but we continued on to Pigeon Spring taking a break and filling up. The spring box at Pigeon had very clear water.

After the break we headed out on 11.5 miles of road hiking along the El Oso road. After seeing very few people for 2 days we now had to share the road with ATV's and Jeeps. However, to their credit many of them asked if we needed anything like water etc. FOTG scored some extra sunscreen! The AZT finally leaves the road for single track and we had 8.3 miles to hwy 87 which just happened to be the location of our cache thanks to Kathy and Jackie who dropped us much needed resupply. By now it was dark so we grabbed the cache and looked for the nearest flat spot for camp.

Day 4 - 19.96 miles 4,764 AEG

A bit later start this morning but we needed the extra rest after long miles the day before. The first 5 miles of this section is old road so easy walking. Eventually it drops into a canyon on Little Saddle trail with the first water of the day at about 6 miles. Good pools and flow for about 3/4 mile. From there we gained significant AEG to Mormon Grove trail junction but after that there is a fast 4 mile section that traverses past Saddle Mtn. Next stop we dropped into McFarland Canyon and took a break. Good flow in McFarland with pools for about 1/2 mile before the trail leaves the canyon. From there trail gains about 1000 feet going over to Thicket Spring area. Didn't see any water at Thicket but we really didn't look around that much. Then it was up to the Peeley TH turn off where said goodbye to FOTG. He continued up the AZT Mazatzal Divide trail and I headed for the trail head. It was great and tough 4 days of hiking for sure...thanks FOTG!

Coordinating with Kathy she was my pickup on Peeley road but I walked some of the road until we met part way down. Interestingly a month ago on Feb 13th we did a Deer Creek hike and had to walk this same section of road but it was covered with 8 inches of snow and 15 to 20 trees were laying across the road. So they did a nice job removing all the downfall.
Culture
Culture [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Intrepid Back Shot
Meteorology
Meteorology [ checklist ]
[ checklist ] Sunrise
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
poppies, lupine, glow mallow, Indian paintbrush

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Pine Creek at Reavis Gap #117 Light flow Light flow
light flow and small pools

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Reavis Creek at Fireline #118 Medium flow Medium flow
multiple pools

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Reavis Creek at Gap Trail #117 Light flow Light flow
good flow and small pools

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Reavis Saddle Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
clear water in the spring area

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Reavis Trail Canyon Light flow Light flow
light flow and small pools

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Walnut Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
good clear water at the spring source
_____________________
4 archives
average hiking speed 2.33 mph
1, 2, 3  Next

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.

helpcommentissue

end of page marker