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Mule Deer Trail - White Tanks - 12 members in 47 triplogs have rated this an average 2.6 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Dec 05 2020
joebartels
avatar

 Guides 241
 Routes 829
 Photos 11,881
 Triplogs 4,722

51 male
 Joined Nov 20 1996
 Phoenix, AZ
Goat Camp - Ford Canyon Loop, AZ 
Goat Camp - Ford Canyon Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Dec 05 2020
joebartels
Hiking18.20 Miles 2,941 AEG
Hiking18.20 Miles   8 Hrs   5 Mns   2.50 mph
2,941 ft AEG      48 Mns Break18 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Expectations for Mule Deer Trail were ultra-low on the foothill location. Odds of enjoyment bottomed out upon visual realization... 50 acres torched by a wildfire earlier this year on May 21st. Turned out to be a pleasant surprise on a relaxing sunrise stroll with cool views, friendly fellow hikers, one-stalker, and a delightful tread to boot.

The Bajada Trail was considerably nicer than anticipated too. Nice washes, trees, saguaros... then again, it was morning light laced with cool jazz temps, so let's not get carried away. Bruce corrected my rookie Okie fumble pronouncing bajada. I appreciate it in hindsight, flipped my frown, and added a helper to the top of the related guide pages for the next guy.

Heading up Goat Camp Trail is a medium never-let-up grade. Cool massive boulders in an intriguing pocket of Sonoran love is cool being so close to the city. Tread in the upper reaches is y-bar ankle busters, so it's likely deemed horrible by some on the surface. No biggie ascending. Total misnomer, we did not observe any goats camping or any goats period... alas.

Goat Canyon had me at hello, views casting from upper Goat seals my four-of-five ranking for Goat Camp Trail. An abundance of dry grass in the entire range is an unavoidable nail in the Sonoran coffin, so enjoy before forever changed.

Bruce re-suggested Barry Goldwater Peak. With time and resources, it seemed worthy. We settled on halfway, saving the elusive western views for another day. Instead, we admired the 270-degree views from the old purple-dashed jeep trail on topo. That musta been one gnarly pioneer ride.

We set 3032 as the target for a lunch break but mutually settled on a nearby unofficial 2974 sub-highpoint. Back on trail we crossed paths with Betty Boop and company, took a wrong turn, and passed Betty backtracking.

I sincerely enjoyed all of the above. That said, the dryfall in Ford Canyon is the most spectacular impact most will remember.

Despite rare visits for such a nearby option, the White Tanks never disappoint.
_____________________
- joe
Dec 05 2020
The_Eagle
avatar

 Guides 7
 Routes 799
 Photos 9,897
 Triplogs 1,392

64 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Goat Camp - Ford Canyon Loop, AZ 
Goat Camp - Ford Canyon Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Dec 05 2020
The_Eagle
Hiking18.69 Miles 2,921 AEG
Hiking18.69 Miles   8 Hrs   4 Mns   2.60 mph
2,921 ft AEG      52 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
When I lived in the West Valley, I used to hit up the White Tanks more often. Glad to get back out there again.

A 7am start and a pleasantly cool, clear morning. We saw four doe near the TH that could care less that we were there.

Mule Deer Trail was a good warm up. Good trail and an easy grade while the sun was rising.

Bajada (buh·haa·duh) Trail was easy peazy and pleasant once Joe's stalker left us.

Goat Camp has never been my favorite. Maybe because it's been warmer in the past when I've done it. A nice climb with good views today. We saw 4 more deer here. There's only one section of ankle busters on the way up. I took Joe up a wash the took us to the road to Goldwater Peak. From here we hit up the ridgeline use trail back down to Goat Camp. Once again, no goats we seen today.

After lunch, a wrong turn and a run in twice with the twins, we headed down on Ford Canyon Trail. This my favorite in the White Tanks, Interesting geology, some easy scrambling and great views. This is also where we saw most of the people on the day.

Good times
_____________________
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
Nov 07 2020
Nightstalker
avatar

 Routes 89
 Photos 5,790
 Triplogs 914

52 male
 Joined Apr 25 2011
 Goodyear, AZ
White Tanks Easy Loop, AZ 
White Tanks Easy Loop, AZ
 
Mtn Biking avatar Nov 07 2020
Nightstalker
Mtn Biking11.40 Miles 8 AEG
Mtn Biking11.40 Miles   1 Hour   57 Mns   7.20 mph
8 ft AEG      22 Mns Break12 LBS Pack
 no routes
Late morning ride with my bestest riding buddy SCA. Lots of hikers, bikers, and some horsey's too.
_____________________
2 archives
Oct 25 2020
Nightstalker
avatar

 Routes 89
 Photos 5,790
 Triplogs 914

52 male
 Joined Apr 25 2011
 Goodyear, AZ
White Tanks Easy Loop, AZ 
White Tanks Easy Loop, AZ
 
Mtn Biking avatar Oct 25 2020
Nightstalker
Mtn Biking11.30 Miles 784 AEG
Mtn Biking11.30 Miles   1 Hour   24 Mns   8.27 mph
784 ft AEG      2 Mns Break12 LBS Pack
 no routes
Every time I head out to the White Tanks for a mountain bike ride I always end up riding the competitive loop. Today I decided to explore some of the other trails the White Tanks have to offer. I parked at the trailhead for South trail. I followed the following trails in a clockwise direction: South, Goat Camp, Bajada, Mule Deer, Mesquite, Waddell, For Canyon, Ironwood, and returned to my truck all the way back on Mule Deer. I encountered a fair number of hikers and bikers under the overcast skies this morning. Most were super happy to see me. I know I was super happy to see them, even the ones that didn't return the super happiness. South trail and Goat Camp were a little bumpy. The rest were smooth and well groomed. Signs at all the trail intersections. Nice relaxing ride. Almost thought I was going to get rained on.
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Aug 08 2020
DarthStiller
avatar

 Guides 25
 Routes 337
 Photos 7,091
 Triplogs 531

51 male
 Joined Jul 05 2006
 Mesa, AZ
Gray Fox Trail - White TanksPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 08 2020
DarthStiller
Hiking11.43 Miles 845 AEG
Hiking11.43 Miles   4 Hrs   25 Mns   2.61 mph
845 ft AEG      2 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Went out to the White Tanks to hike a few sections of trails I haven't done yet. Kept it to the flat trails with the heat being a factor these days. The weather was actually much better than last Saturday, much less humid. It was actually pretty cool early on with some light cloud cover, but later the heat started to kick in. Went through a lot of water, well over 150 oz.

I started from the end of Goat Camp Trail, then took the Bajada and Mule Deer Trails northbound to the Grey Fox Trail and headed back. Saw some bikers and trail runners early on, but by the time I was done at 11am, most everyone was already gone for the day. The burn area there from a few months ago already looks better. Still no vegetation obviously, but less black and charred.
_____________________
May 30 2020
DarthStiller
avatar

 Guides 25
 Routes 337
 Photos 7,091
 Triplogs 531

51 male
 Joined Jul 05 2006
 Mesa, AZ
Waddell TrailPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar May 30 2020
DarthStiller
Hiking11.84 Miles 872 AEG
Hiking11.84 Miles   4 Hrs   18 Mns   2.75 mph
872 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Went back to White Tanks to do the hike I planned last week that got put on hold from the fire. I hiked the lower trails, with the main goal to finish all the Mule Deer Trail since it's part of the MT.

I started down at Parking Area 1 and hike the southernmost portion of the Mule Deer Trail, eventually heading north. I hiked the little spur over towards the Nature Center, since that's also a designated part of the MT. As I hiked over the high point of the Mule Deer Trail, that's where the wildfire was. Mostly just scorched earth, not as much brush as there was before. On the way up the hill, 4 or 5 mountain bikers flew down the hill past me without the slightest thought of yielding the trail. All other hikers and bikers I encountered the rest of the morning were decent human beings.

At the staging area, I headed north on the Ford Canyon Trail, then took a right turn and hiked all of the Ironwood Trail, then headed south on the Waddell Trail. After the Waddell, I took a right turn onto the Mesquite Canyon Trail back to staging area.

Hiked over the hill on the Mule Deer again, and took the Bajada over to Goat Camp. Along the Bajada is where I saw the saguaro with a hole in it that obviously has a bees nest. The air rushing out of the whole made it sound like there was an AC unit inside the cactus. Managed to zoom inside the hole for a decent pic without putting myself at too much risk.

From the Goat Camp Trail, I turned left on the South Trail and back to the car. The temperature wasn't too hot. Got a little warm the last hour or so, but not unbearable. The early morning light cloud cover helped with that. Nice to get some higher mileage on actual trails again, even if the AEG was still a little lacking.
Fauna
Fauna
Honey Bee
_____________________
Apr 01 2020
mt98dew
avatar

 Guides 21
 Routes 19
 Photos 416
 Triplogs 1,691

51 male
 Joined Oct 24 2010
 Phoenix,Az
Mule Deer Trail - White TanksPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Run/Jog avatar Apr 01 2020
mt98dew
Run/Jog7.17 Miles 251 AEG
Run/Jog7.17 Miles   1 Hour   25 Mns   5.06 mph
251 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
After work jog. Got out there around 3pm. Informed that Waterfall trail (unsure why, but the parking was coned off) and Willow Canyon (rescue) were closed. This was fine since I was leaning towards Mule Deer. Did a lasso. Started from Mule Deer and headed south. At the end of Mule Deer took South trail to Goat Camp to Bajada and then back on Mule Deer to get to the TH. Encountered a fairly frisky rattlesnake. It raised up when I first approached it and then again when angled past. Told some oncoming hikers about him, but they seemed unconcerned (ho hum). Weather was nice, but I could tell it was warmer than what had been the norm. Trails only moderately busy....11 hikers, 3 trail runners and 3 bikers. Fairly easy to keep one's "social distance". No reason to close these types of venues. Besides Mr Rattles, I saw a couple chipmunks and 20 plus lizards. The lizards were noteworthy because up until this hike I had only seen a couple this whole year.
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Mar 15 2020
Yoder
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 Routes 20
 Photos 1,293
 Triplogs 103

55 male
 Joined Oct 07 2017
 Chandler, AZ
Goat Camp / Mesquite LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 15 2020
Yoder
Hiking13.70 Miles 2,400 AEG
Hiking13.70 Miles   5 Hrs   21 Mns   2.72 mph
2,400 ft AEG      19 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Partners none no partners
We thought the time would be good for wildflowers, but there wasn't alot going on yet. It does appear the brittle bush are going, so I expect the Ford canyon may be good now. We did find some patches of flowers here and there. Hike overall was good. Once you get over the initial push up Goat canyon its pretty level walking, with great scenic views, almost alpine like, without the pines :) .

Loop included the following hikes for a 13.7 mile loop
1. Goat Camp
2. Mesquite Canyon
3. Mule Deer
4. Bajada

We got a nice early start, so didn't really run into anyone until well into the Mesquite section of the hike.
Fauna
Fauna
Cactus Wren
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
_____________________
J. Yoder
1 archive
Feb 01 2020
DarthStiller
avatar

 Guides 25
 Routes 337
 Photos 7,091
 Triplogs 531

51 male
 Joined Jul 05 2006
 Mesa, AZ
Maricopa Trail - White Tanks to Grand AvenuePhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 01 2020
DarthStiller
Hiking13.50 Miles 121 AEG
Hiking13.50 Miles   4 Hrs   56 Mns   2.74 mph
121 ft AEG
 
Partners partners
mt98dew
Went out to White Tanks to hike another portion of the Maricopa Trail northbound from the park. Got started at 6:30am in the dark and hiked well over 2 miles before the sun hit the horizon. Brian got a later start and caught up to me at about that same time. We hiked up to just past where the trail jogs to an underpass under the Sun Valley Parkway, then turned back.

The trail is all very level and smooth, making it very easy to hike. I was just short of 3mph for the majority of this hike. It was also a single track pretty much the entire way, which was nice. Nice views of the White Tanks early, and some far away views of the mountains around Lake Pleasant as you get farther north. The trail goes under some power lines and heads back to them, which wasn't the greatest. Around that area someone was flying a remote control plane that was doing some wild moves and dives.

The section around the Sun Valley Parkway also had a lot of traffic noise. There were also a lot of green around from the winter rains. Some sections has some heavier green and shady areas. Overall, not a bad hike. got some decent mileage and made good time.
_____________________
1 archive
Dec 28 2019
DarthStiller
avatar

 Guides 25
 Routes 337
 Photos 7,091
 Triplogs 531

51 male
 Joined Jul 05 2006
 Mesa, AZ
Maricopa Trail - White Tanks to Grand AvenuePhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 28 2019
DarthStiller
Hiking13.50 Miles 121 AEG
Hiking13.50 Miles   4 Hrs   26 Mns   3.05 mph
121 ft AEG
 
Partners none no partners
I saw that more sections of the Maricopa Trail have been built and decided to go hike part of it. When I was at this park earlier this month I saw a junction with the Maricopa Trail that heads north. I decided to start from the South Trail, take that to the Mule Deer Trail and head south this time.

There was a lot of fog in the morning in the shallow valley just outside the park. On the drive in, in the dark, I went through it. The visibility was very bad, I had to put the fog lights on and drive very slowly with no other traffic on the road. By the time I hit the trail, there was sufficient daylight to not cause any visibility issues hiking, but it did give some dramatic scenery during dawn.

The trail is marked very well with the MT markers, especially near any junctions with dirt roads. Some sections of the trail are along existing jeep roads, but most of it is actually a separately built single track. Sometimes the single track just parallels a road, but it does meander away after a while.

I was planning to hike a little further to Missouri where the online maps show an "access point", which is different from a trailhead, although I'm not sure why. However, there is a lot of construction going on for what looks to be another subdivision in the area, so I decided to head back.

Spotted the Goodyear blimp and some fighters from Luke AFB in the sky. also had some nice views of the snow on the mountains to the north. The Estrellas had a cloud bank along their ridgeline all day. The clouds faded as the morning progressed, but never went away completely.
_____________________
1 archive
Nov 19 2019
LJW
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 Photos 672
 Triplogs 188

26 male
 Joined Jun 02 2019
 Phoenix, AZ
Barry Goldwater PeakPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 19 2019
LJW
Hiking19.75 Miles 3,307 AEG
Hiking19.75 Miles   5 Hrs   40 Mns   3.59 mph
3,307 ft AEG      10 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
Did a counterclockwise Ford Canyon/Goat Camp loop with Barry Goldwater Peak the halfway and high point. Started at 6:30 in the dark on Waddell after parking between areas 8 and 9 near Ford Canyon.

Watched the sun rise on Waddell. Good visibility early, could see as far as Four Peaks, but it didn't last.

Saw four javelina on Ford Canyon around the dam. Just about no water in any of the tanks.

No human tracks in the wash between Goat Camp and the access road, and no tracks on the road for that matter. Didn't read the register, but I doubt many recent visitors. Very hazy toward Phoenix, couldn't really see past Piestewa Peak/Camelback. Darker on the other sides of the peak because of heavy cloud cover.

Saw a truck coming down from the Radio Summit, and it parked on the saddle below and watched me walk back down the road. First person I saw on the day until about half way down Goat Camp. Few people lower on the trail.

Goat Camp to Bajada to Mule Deer to Mesquite, and I was wishing I would have parked farther from Ford Canyon and gotten this stretch of the hike over with in the dark. Lots of car noise, and there were a dozen pairs of fighter jets buzzing around. Saw around 15 people on those trails.

If/when I do this one again I think I'd add the Radio Summit. Seems not too far out of the way from Goat Camp after it passes below the peak and a pretty straightforward bushwhack up the ridge.
1 archive
Feb 18 2018
PJackalope
avatar

 Routes 28
 Photos 68
 Triplogs 39

45 male
 Joined Jul 25 2007
 Peoria, Az
White Tanks Goat Camp to Willow Canyon, AZ 
White Tanks Goat Camp to Willow Canyon, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 18 2018
PJackalope
Hiking13.64 Miles 2,348 AEG
Hiking13.64 Miles   4 Hrs   35 Mns   2.98 mph
2,348 ft AEG12 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Last weekend I did the Ford Canyon to Mesquite Canyon and today hiked the Goat Camp to Willow Canyon. Both have their interesting bits, but I have to say I really enjoyed the Goat Camp to Willow Canyon. Goat Camp has some rough sections heading up into the mountain, but for most part was a very nice easy trail looping along the mountain side up towards the base of the radio towers. With the recent rains there was nice amount of moisture on the ground and air adding to that classic desert smell. I was also greeted by a family of coyotes. One had to be within of a quarter mile of me because of loud he/she was coming it. Though I squinted as best I could, I saw nothing. Maybe next time. Anyway, once again getting out past the 2 mile mark there was total solitude and stayed that for most part on Goat Camp. Once the turn down Willow Canyon was made quite a bit more people and mountain bikers showed. Next time I may have to combine Goat Camp with Ford Canyon.
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1 archive
Feb 10 2018
SunDevil3
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 Guides 3
 Routes 7
 Photos 514
 Triplogs 84

39 male
 Joined May 21 2004
 Phoenix, AZ
Mule Deer to South to Mule Deer (from Area 4), AZ 
Mule Deer to South to Mule Deer (from Area 4), AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 10 2018
SunDevil3
Hiking5.00 Miles 251 AEG
Hiking5.00 Miles   1 Hour   45 Mns   2.86 mph
251 ft AEG12 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Headed out to the Tanks with no particular trail in mind-- I have been wanting to do Goldwater Peak for a while but was getting a late start and decided I had neither the time nor the energy on this day. Ended up stopping at Area 4 parking lot and heading Southbound on the Mule Deer Trail.

Nice hike with only minimal foot and bike traffic on Mule Deer in spite of the abundance of cars throughout the park. The South trail makes for a nice little connector Eastward back to Mule Deer with only the need for about 100 yards walking along the roadway.

Great location. Beautiful day. What more can one ask for?
_____________________
"Being unselfish is a natural high, like hiking or paint thinner."
- Homer J Simpson
Dec 28 2017
rcorfman
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 115
 Photos 1,418
 Triplogs 981

60 male
 Joined Oct 17 2008
 Phoenix, AZ
MT - Guadalupe to Trilby, AZ 
MT - Guadalupe to Trilby, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Dec 28 2017
rcorfman
Backpack84.43 Miles 4,741 AEG
Backpack84.43 Miles4 Days         
4,741 ft AEG25 LBS Pack
 
1st trip

Day 1, 20.1 miles, 2618 AEG

My wife dropped me off at the I17/Happy Valley Park & Ride where I took the I17 RAPID bus downtown, then hopped on the light rail east to Tempe, then got on another bus (62 South) to S Hardy Dr & W Guadalupe Rd where I exited the bus and started my hike. The transit worked really well except where I messed up in Tempe and missed the 62S bus and had to wait a 1/2 hour for the next. From there, it was a short walk west to the canal where I met up with the Maricopa Trail. I noticed the first MT sign approaching the I10 overpass. The MT continues to the Pima Canyon Trailhead, South Mountain. The trailhead is currently closed for construction but should be reopening soon. It was easy enough to skirt around the construction, there just wasn't access to the parking, restrooms, and water.

Most of this day was hiking the National Trail across South Mountain. My plan was to camp right around where I would exit the park but by the time I reached Telegraph Pass, I knew I would need more water before camping. I had about half a liter when I left the park. I turned south and walked to a house hoping to get water but no one answered so I continued along the MT to 51st Ave where I turned south and stopped at another house where I was allowed to get water.

After getting water, I went back and continued along the MT for maybe half a mile where I stopped to camp. I wanted to get far enough away from the busy road where it wouldn't be as loud during the night. After setting things up, I was just about ready to start dinner when a tribal policeman saw me and stopped. Evidently I was on Gila River tribal land and wasn't allowed to camp there, so I moved my camp about 400' to the other side of the road. The road is the reservation boundary: west side is Gila River Indian Reservation land.

Day 2, 21.6 miles, 875 AEG

There was a lot of traffic noise all night and construction going on north of me so I didn't have the greatest sleep and had trouble getting going in the morning. It was a bit past eight when I continued walking NW down the MT which is the power line road here.

The MT continues down the power line road most all the way to Tres Rios. The east part of Tres Rios is abandoned and parched now. It used to be a heritage site and was a really nice area to walk around but now it is wasteland. Interestingly enough, there is a pair of bald eagles nesting in a dead tree here. The Tribal Policeman told me about the eagles and said to just be quiet as I walked past. The nest was easy to spot and I watched one of the eagles flying around.

West of 91st Ave, there's an MT sign pointing west next to a City of Phoenix sign saying No Trespassing. I decided to trespass as the two signs were contradicting eachother and, well, I'm walking the MT. The "closed area" probably extends to 97th Ave. This whole stretch is along a two lane wide dirt road that was actively being used, though it is gated at least from 91st.

From there the MT continues along Tres Rios to PIR. Most of it is tiered wetlands to the north of the trail (dirt road). Along this stretch two policeman cruised up and talked to me. They patrol the area for people illegally shooting, fishing without a license, and for not having a Tres Rios access permit. At the time, I did not know a permit was needed but it is free, is good for a month after issue, and is available at https://www.phoenix.gov/waterservices/t ... ontactustr.

Once past the wetlands portion of Tres Rios, the MT is a little more difficult to follow but manageable. I was nearing PIR and was getting low on water too, so I stopped to get a couple liters of water at a pond. Tres Rios is wetlands created from City of Phoenix Waste Water Treatment Facility. All the tiers of the wetlands help to filter and clean the water so I wanted to wait as long as possible before getting any water, if at all. Unfortunately I had to get water. The water in the pond was a bit stagnant so it wasn't the best tasting. Fortunately a short distance later, I crossed the Gila River where the water was flowing, so I dumped out what I had got and replaced it.

From Tres Rios, the MT continues past PIR along Indian Springs Rd. There was a lot of construction going on at PIR. The MT then turns south on the east entrance road into Estrella Mountain Regional Park. From there, it first follows the Desert Rose trail and is easy to follow the MT signs to the park's Nature Center.

When I reached the Nature Center, it was after five so nobody was around to ask about camping. I decided to camp at the large ramadas that were nearby with both water and a restroom and power outlets at the tables. About 3 AM, I was awoken by people talking. After a bit I noticed a police car arriving. Awhile later a deisel truck arrived. I believe it was a tow truck but didn't look to see. Finally after 4, the truck left and the police cars started to leave. I thought, good, I'll be able to sleep now, when the police parked their vehicle pointing right at me. Wonderful. I got up and talked to the police, they took my ID and I imagine checked for any outstanding warrants and whatever else they check. We talked for a bit and they left me since they decided I wasn't a bum and wouldn't freeze to death. It turns out a man was threatening suicide and once that was taken care of, they needed the ramada number to place their location on the police report and that is why they happened to see me.

So finally I thought I could get some sleep but then the coyotes lit up. They were yelping and barking and howling like crazy. There must have been well over a dozen of them and they were very close. The kept the racket up off and on for the next hour or so. Ugh.

Day 3, 23.8 miles, 651 AEG

The MT was very well signed on the Estrella Park trails, but once I passed the Nature Center, I wasn't spotting any and wasn't sure exactly where to go. From what I can tell now, there is no MT from the Nature Center to the Beaver TH, which I missed. From the Nature Center I went east on Casey Abbot Dr until I reached an old bikepath heading to the left (west) and took it until it ended, then followed Vineyard to Estrella Pkwy. While along the path, I saw one of those noisy coyotes. It turns out if I went a short distance farther on Casey Abbot Dr, I could then have turned north and crossed Vineyard at Bullard (there may be a fence so I'm not even sure that would work), then the Beaver TH would have been just to the east. As I was entering the bridge on Estrella Pkwy, I saw where the MT came up to where I was, along with an MT sign.

The MT continues north on Estrella Pkwy for about 1.8 miles. When it reaches MC85, I think I was supposed to cross to the east side of Estrella Pkwy, but missed that. When I reached Bullard Ave, I saw an MT sign pointing to the east side. I continued north but think I should have turned west onto Bullard. Instead, I turned west onto Wood Blvd, then crossed a fallow field to where I was able to pick up the MT where it headed north to Yuma Rd.

Here the MT follows Yuma Rd west for 5.7 miles, then turns north on Jackrabbit. The road is busy for a ways and it is noisy and a true urban experience. On the west end, it gets rural as you pass by cotton fields. There's about a 1.5 mile span of "no trail" as you cross under I10 on Jackrabbit then turn west on McDowell. McDowell is closed as you near Bulldozer Wash, which is where the MT is supposed to pick back up. I continued west into Verrado where I stopped at Culver's for a burger and fries and a cold drink. After my break I returned to Bulldozer Wash and tried to pick up the MT. I was hoping to see some signs but I didn't. I walked north up the dirt that started at the power poles, then crossed over to the Verrado paths west of the wash when I reached some fencing. I think I should have crossed over earlier around where the power poles turned to the substation.

I followed the Verrado foot paths up to Indian School Rd where I turned east back to Jackrabbit. At Jackrabbit, I followed some paths north where I started seeing MT signs again. Yeah!

I thought I saw a QT on Jackrabbit on Google maps but I was mistaken so when I reached the last houses before getting to the desert, I knocked on doors until someone answered and let me get some water. Actually, I only knocked on two doors. The first no one was home, and I picked the second because there was three cars in front of it.

So it was nice to get off the roads and onto some trail again. Unfortunately it took me almost all day for that to happen. As the day ended and it grew dark, I found all but one of a "Maricopa Trail" series of geocaches, saving the last for tomorrow.

Unless you're hell bent on walking all of the MT, I suggest either cycling this day's section or just skipping it altogether.

Day 4, 18.9 miles, 576 AEG

I slept pretty good especially since I was tired from lack of sleep the night before and despite some all night partiers a few hundred yards away. I was delaying getting up but then I looked to the east and could see the sunrise was going to be exceptional so up I rose. If you've never seen a sunrise from the White Tanks, I encourage you to do so. The valley stretches out uninterrupted to the east for miles and when the conditions are right, the sunrises are as good as they get. This morning's was truly spectacular.

I had a couple miles before I entered White Tanks Mountain Regional Park. I took a quick side trip to the Nature Center where I wanted to see where the last water was before leaving the park. There was a volunteer I asked while pointing to a spot on the map. She replied that there's no water in the park. I guess she's not familiar with the park as there is lots picnic areas and camping with water in it. So she asked someone in a room behind here and there was water at the place on the map I asked about, maybe two miles farther. The area was a nice picnic area with restrooms and ramadas and a playground. I stopped and got water and had some food before continuing.

I've been on all the MT from where I exited the park to where I stopped for the day previously, either walking or cycling. The trail is very flat except for where it crosses some washes. Most of it is good tread though the dust was very thick in places since it's been so long since rain. The area is not that spectacular though there are some good views of the White Tanks, Estrellas, and the mountains to the north, such as the Heiroglyphics.

I finished up at the Trilby Trailhead. Basically the trail crosses Grand Ave at 163rd ave, then turns right past the train tracks and follows the road a short distance to the trailhead. Not long after I reached Trilby, my wife showed up and shuttled me back home.
Fauna
Fauna
Bald Eagle
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Go find a LonelyCache
May 31 2017
mt98dew
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 Guides 21
 Routes 19
 Photos 416
 Triplogs 1,691

51 male
 Joined Oct 24 2010
 Phoenix,Az
Mule Deer Trail - White TanksPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Run/Jog avatar May 31 2017
mt98dew
Run/Jog7.13 Miles 251 AEG
Run/Jog7.13 Miles   1 Hour   18 Mns   5.48 mph
251 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Did this jog as an in and out. Started from the south end, first on the South Trail (.2 miles) and then the Mule Trail. Nice trail to run on fairly flat and smooth. Temps hit 100 but there were high clouds and a decent wind. Didn't see anyone on the trails and the only wildlife were 6 chipmunks.
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Feb 17 2017
WanderingDad
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 Routes 23
 Photos 288
 Triplogs 17

35 male
 Joined Jun 09 2014
 Surprise Az
First MTB Ride, AZ 
First MTB Ride, AZ
 
Mtn Biking avatar Feb 17 2017
WanderingDad
Mtn Biking4.63 Miles 292 AEG
Mtn Biking4.63 Miles      48 Mns   6.78 mph
292 ft AEG      7 Mns Break
 
1st trip
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
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1 archive
Jan 21 2017
Tortoise_Hiker
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 Routes 78
 Photos 7,395
 Triplogs 2,793

59 male
 Joined Apr 02 2005
 Mesa, AZ
Goat Camp - Willow / Mesquite LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 21 2017
Tortoise_Hiker
Hiking14.07 Miles 2,485 AEG
Hiking14.07 Miles   4 Hrs   7 Mns   3.42 mph
2,485 ft AEG
 
no photosets
1st trip
This hike is in the 60 hikes book. One of the hiking books I will work on this year. I parked at the Bathroom where Bajada Trail crosses the road. I did the hike clockwise. I started about 10 til 7AM. It was cold and windy but I never got rained on. There was a hiker at one of the Goat Camp saddles with one of those weather gadgets my friend Bruce has. He said wind was at 22 mph and the temp was 34. It did feel a little nippy from time to time. The Sun did come out. The trails were wet but in good shape. The hikers and trail runners were all friendly today as were the dogs. Nice hike. :) The "official route" on HAZ jumps off Mesquite Trail by the intersection with Waddell Trail and followed the road for a short while. I believe you should stay on Mesquite Trail and I did on my loop. :y:
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Tortoise Hiking. Stop and smell the Petrichor.
Jan 14 2017
WanderingDad
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 Routes 23
 Photos 288
 Triplogs 17

35 male
 Joined Jun 09 2014
 Surprise Az
White Tanks, AZ 
White Tanks, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 14 2017
WanderingDad
Hiking4.75 Miles 304 AEG
Hiking4.75 Miles   1 Hour   39 Mns   2.88 mph
304 ft AEG30 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Hit the trial with my youngest daughter for the first time. She loved it....well for about the first .5 mile. Then she was asleep for the rest of the ride. But that's ok. The trails were in great condition. There was very little traffic.

Started on South Trail. Then hit Goat Camp. From Goat Camp, I jumped on Bajada leading to Mule Deer which brought us back to the trail head. Beautiful day!
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Jul 08 2016
afrankie
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 Routes 40
 Photos 353
 Triplogs 128

32 male
 Joined Sep 30 2015
 Carrboro, NC
Maricopa Trail - Mule Deer, AZ 
Maricopa Trail - Mule Deer, AZ
 
Mtn Biking avatar Jul 08 2016
afrankie
Mtn Biking7.52 Miles 404 AEG
Mtn Biking7.52 Miles   1 Hour   9 Mns   8.06 mph
404 ft AEG      13 Mns Break
 
no photosets
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Went for an easy morning ride that turned out to be much more difficult. I allotted an hour to ride, to limit heat exposure. Well I didn't make it. (Well I clearly made it, but not to an hour:) ) The plan was to take Mule Deer up to connect to Maricopa Trail, and to ride that to Bell and back. This was the plan before my self-imposed time limit, so I just wanted to see how far I could get before having to turn back.

The first 20 min was fine and I was keeping a solid pace, but the heat was noticeable. With a sustained bpm floating 160+, it sure felt a lot hotter, even if it was just myself. Mule Deer is a regular for me but this was my first on the MT, which had some sections of compacted singletrack heading north I was looking to dive deeper into. So a few minutes earlier than expected I pulled over for some shade and a salty snack. As soon as I dismount I see rather large coyote just staring me down from 10yds away. At first I almost mistook it for a grey wolf given its size. I heeded its advice and took a few minutes more before heading back.

Heading back was slow going, simply cuz I couldn't cool myself down and was timid about getting my mercury any higher. I stopped everytime I could feel the bpms raise, which is pretty often when you're biking. There were some longer downhills on the return that allowed me to coast, albeit at a much slower pace than usual. Needless to say I won't be biking in the Valley much at all this summer unless I can roll out of bed earlier on the weekends, but I do feel justified about sitting in the AC all day :)
_____________________
Good judgment comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgment.
Evan Hardin

Footloose adventures are documented instagram @afrankie8.
Apr 29 2016
afrankie
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 Routes 40
 Photos 353
 Triplogs 128

32 male
 Joined Sep 30 2015
 Carrboro, NC
Mule - Goat Camp - Bajada Loop, AZ 
Mule - Goat Camp - Bajada Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 29 2016
afrankie
Hiking5.09 Miles 362 AEG
Hiking5.09 Miles   1 Hour   1 Min   5.66 mph
362 ft AEG      7 Mns Break
 
no photosets
1st trip
Mental cleanse on a Friday morning that was mild enough for me to get out in the late morning without cooking. It was a jog/hike and carved up the loop for the mild terrain, although the trails were sandier/less compacted than anticipated. Turned around at Black Canyon but would like to take Goat Camp up further into the cut next time.

Unexpected perk of getting out there during the week - Ranger Ricky was feeding her pet desert tortoise. I'd been looking for one in the wild, and this gets me a step closer. It proved it's worth as a desert tortoise when I learned it's favorite food is Cilantro.

Btw, water's available at the Goat Camp trailhead.
_____________________
Good judgment comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgment.
Evan Hardin

Footloose adventures are documented instagram @afrankie8.
average hiking speed 2.74 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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