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Coon Creek - Lower Ruins - 1 member in 4 triplogs has rated this an average 4 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Feb 24 2018
friendofThundergod
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 Guides 24
 Routes 301
 Photos 8,642
 Triplogs 814

38 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Pueblo Canyon RuinsGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 24 2018
friendofThundergod
Hiking12.55 Miles 2,816 AEG
Hiking12.55 Miles   5 Hrs   55 Mns   2.28 mph
2,816 ft AEG      25 Mns Break
 no routes
Partners none no partners
This was obviously not my first time here, but honestly this area will never get old for me. This time around some ice made the hike in a little interesting and as usual you can’t beat the nice feeling that goes along with showing someone this area for the first time.

The ruins were great as usual and as stated earlier the ice was a little interesting, or dicey in spots depending on who you ask. I still maintain that for this area the fire may have improved the area slightly, but the trail has probably suffered some due to post fire erosion, but oh well that just makes it a little tougher on the masses. There are certainly some better views along the trail now and most of the annoying scrub brushes and manzanita along the route have been eradicated, so that probably cancels out the eroded portions. We only saw two other hikers the entire day and the conditions were nearly perfect for hiking overall. I forgot about the third set of ruins in Pueblo, but the "crack house" more than made up for that small disappointment, I hope. I have said this before, but I would still be a big fan of the forest service closing the road at Devils Chasm. Currently, parking at Devils Chasm to avoid the tight boulder squeeze on the road adds an additional three miles to one’s hike, if going to Pueblo or Cold Springs.

We headed to the trailhead for the “lower” Coon Creek ruins on our way out, but after not even a half mile of walking across the drab desert there, neither of us including the dogs thought the ruins would be worth continuing. We will save that one for another day, when the creek may be a more tempting aproach to the ruins.

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3 archives
Apr 09 2016
HikingBuddy
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 Guides 1
 Routes 13
 Photos 444
 Triplogs 12

72 male
 Joined Nov 10 2014
 Peoria, AZ
Ruins Near NF-203a and Cook Creek, AZ 
Ruins Near NF-203a and Cook Creek, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 09 2016
HikingBuddy
Hiking0.98 Miles 308 AEG
Hiking0.98 Miles   1 Hour   19 Mns   1.18 mph
308 ft AEG      29 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Here’s yet another old, but not too old, hiking journal from Bud. We, 4 hikers from the Friends Hiking Club, were doing a pre-hike for an upcoming Coon Spring Trail #124 hike. Along the way we decided to see if we could find nearby ruins that one of us had heard of. Sure enough we found a coral off of Nf-203a which was supposedly near the ruins. Today, thanks to the CannondaleKid (aka Mark), I found out that the ruins are the Nordhoff-Hope Cliff Dwellings.
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Oct 24 2011
CannondaleKid
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 Guides 43
 Routes 141
 Photos 21,934
 Triplogs 2,261

70 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
Coon Creek - Lower RuinsGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 24 2011
CannondaleKid
Hiking5.66 Miles 1,446 AEG
Hiking5.66 Miles   5 Hrs   16 Mns   1.51 mph
1,446 ft AEG   1 Hour   31 Mns Break24 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
We hiked Lower Coon Creek a month ago with the intention of visiting some ruins but between vague directions and some bad terrain, we never reached them... in fact we never even saw where they were. So, with a day off, Tracey out of town and my Samurai on stands waiting parts I thought I'd give this one another shot. (Yeah, Tracey wanted to see the ruins, but she wasn't too enthused after what we went through last trip so she didn't mind I did this one solo)

This time I had more detailed information, and with a first-hand look the terrain last trip, I marked out a track with only 7 way points of the general direction I planned to take. Rather than follow the creek most of the way and then climb, I climbed up to a ridge and continued relatively parallel to the creek but well above it. The going much easier and by following a game trail every time I found one going the general direction I was taking I made much better time, at least when I was moving... taking pictures is where much of the time was lost.

While on the approach I took photos of the hilltop where I knew the ruins to be but not until I was quite close could I actually make out a few stacked rock walls. Once at the ruins I looked back down on Coon Creek and realized we hadn't seen the ruins from there because we had been in the midst of trees and thick vegetation. For the return trip I planned on dropping down in a NNW direction picking the easiest route to hit the creek and follow it back.

But first I wanted to figure out how the rafters who visited the ruins back in 1992 saw them in the first place, and what route they may have taken. So I continued south below the ruins until reaching a point where it was possible to climb up, but I doubted rafters would have attempted it here. I climbed back up to the ruins and scanned the area for a more likely route up. I tried the first area where there wasn't a steep drop and found although still steep, it was passable, although coming up wouldn't be very easy. Once I got to the bottom, now the problem was fighting through all the very dense brush between the base of the mountain and the shoreline of the Salt River. It's the same type of brush that stopped us last month. But being solo and with more determination I stuck with it and between clipping brush, hacking branches off and just plain bulling my way through I finally broke through to the water's edge. Looking back up toward the ruins it didn't seem the best angle to make them out well so I continued east along the shore until it curved enough to have a better view. But by that time, the only way to make them out would have been with binoculars, or full zoom on the camera.

Ok, now it was time to head back. Knowing how dense the brush was along the river and how much farther it would be to follow the river back to Coon Creek, it didn't take a moment to choose climbing back up. I scanned the shoreline looking for the area where the brush appeared thinnest again once again let nothing stop me from breaking through. I made it through relatively quickly but at the cost of the skin on my forearms. (I was lavish with the aloe lotion upon my return and already today they look much better.) In general each branch of the brush was thinner than Manzanita, but there was more of it and at times it was hard to breath due to all the powdery dust that came off when contacting each piece of brush. My throat feels pretty harsh from it a day later.

Once I broke through the brush I scanned for a wash to begin my climb back up. I was a little east of where I came down and found by continuing up and sticking to the largest wash the going was reasonably easy. Only the last few hundred feet took some very careful foot placement to keep from sliding backwards. Now back on the ridge I headed for a "gateway" break in the fence and from there headed NNW down toward the creek until I reached it. But I realized right away I'd make better time getting just a little ways above the creek and again followed game trails, most of them being javelina trails. I passed through a few javelina dens along the way and while I saw and heard none, the heavy musky odor made it clear they spent plenty of time here. From there I cruised back to the TH with my mission accomplished.

I posted mostly ruin photos on HAZ, the full set will be on my web site:
http://www.changephoenix.com/11/2011-10-24LwrCoonCrkRuins.html
Flora
Flora
Barrel Cactus
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CannondaleKid
Sep 24 2011
CannondaleKid
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 Guides 43
 Routes 141
 Photos 21,934
 Triplogs 2,261

70 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
Coon Creek - Lower Canyon TrailGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 24 2011
CannondaleKid
Hiking5.19 Miles 735 AEG
Hiking5.19 Miles   6 Hrs   45 Mns   1.40 mph
735 ft AEG   3 Hrs   2 Mns Break
 
1st trip
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trixiec
Original plan was Hell's Hole in the Salome Wilderness but with all the 2-day backpack triplogs we figured it was more than we cared to deal with this hike. So Friday night we looked at alternatives and settled on either Cooper Forks cliff dwellings or possibly Devil's Chasm since Tracey hadn't been there. Thankfully I had one other shorter option as a backup because once we passed through the dense smoke in the Globe area from a fire on Madera Peak (west peak of the Pinals) and then saw the massive smoke plume across the sky toward the east from the Tanner fire in the Sierra Ancha we figured it would be smoky near any of those ruins so decided against them. (And as it turned out the Young Highway was closed so we would not have been able to get into the Salome Wilderness at all.)

Instead we opted for a shorter hike down Lower Coon Creek. We wasted a ton of time on the hike to the Salt River by trying to stay dry, numerous times heading some distance from the creek through cats-claw, cholla, buckthorn, and miscellaneous other brush to stay that way. Once we got to the Salt River we were met by dark brown water and the brush along the bank was thick as can be so we tried climbing up to avoid it. But Tracey wasn't too enthused by the steep terrain or the large boulder-field so we cut it short and headed back.

On the return trip we decided the quickest and easiest course was to just get wet and stay in the creek as much as possible, leaving it only when there was too much debris to get through. Since we were both wearing Tevas that worked out quite well.

Too many photos to choose the best from to post here so at the moment all 70 photos are here:
http://www.changephoenix.com/11/2011-09-24CoonCreek.html
(Included are photos taken from the Redmond Flat and Horseshoe Bend areas on the south side of the Upper Salt River later in the day)
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CannondaleKid
average hiking speed 1.59 mph

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

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