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Adams Mesa - Sycamore Canyon - 1 member in 4 triplogs has rated this an average 3 ( 1 to 5 best )
4 triplogs
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4 Triplogs
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Dec 05 2014
mazatzal
avatar

 Routes 34
 Photos 2,403
 Triplogs 1,162

64 male
 Joined Jul 28 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
Sunrise Adam Stewart, AZ 
Sunrise Adam Stewart, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Dec 05 2014
mazatzal
Hiking12.60 Miles 3,800 AEG
Hiking12.60 Miles   6 Hrs   30 Mns   2.22 mph
3,800 ft AEG      50 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Took Friday off work and went for a few hikes.

#1 Up Sunrise Peak in the McDowells. I’d been here before, off trail 20+ years ago as I was piecing together Annerino’s McDowell Ridgeline as a series off day hikes :roll:
Nice trails now, saw about 20 people - time to get further out of town :)

#2 Adams Mesa - had not done this one - nice views. A few dirt bikes and gunshots in the distance - not bad though. I saw a tortoise and a coyote :D

#3 Stewart Mountain - another first. Signed the register, no sign ins since all the HAZers on 1/1/14 : app :

#4 Coon Bluff - an easy little summit overlooking the Salt river.
Flora
Flora
Moss
Fauna
Fauna
Desert Tortoise
Culture
Culture
Benchmark
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
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2 archives
Apr 26 2012
CannondaleKid
avatar

 Guides 43
 Routes 141
 Photos 21,934
 Triplogs 2,261

71 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
Adams Mesa - Sycamore CanyonPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 26 2012
CannondaleKid
Hiking1.45 Miles 530 AEG
Hiking1.45 Miles   1 Hour   15 Mns   1.36 mph
530 ft AEG      11 Mns Break5 LBS Pack
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
trixiec
Since Tracey wasn't able to hike Adams Mesa with me at the beginning of the month and I had not graced the summit of the eastern peak that seemed like a good choice... until we got out of the car and saw the rain front coming in and plenty of lightning strikes. But with the expectation of a clearing later in the day we decided to do some 4x4 recon seeking out other interesting spots in the Sycamore Creek area. We began our hiking day in the Agua Chiquita Spring area then returned to Adams Mesa once the skies cleared.

Our Agua Chiquita Spring hike triplog is here:
http://hikearizona.com/triplog=74411

Since we were only going to climb the eastern-most peak of Adams Mesa this trip we parked east of the peak just off Forest Road P1007, which made for a pretty quick hike. We managed to traverse the dense cholla field with only a few incidents on the way up. We took what appeared to be the more moderate southern slope to the summit but once on top we found the northern slope was cholla-free so we took that for the return trip. Having started the day with a wet hike it was great to finish off with a hike under clear skies.

I'll be posting some of the photos here on HAZ, the full set of 28 are here:
http://changephoenix.com/jpserver/web/public/album.php?id=84
Fauna
Fauna
Desert Tortoise
_____________________
CannondaleKid
Apr 06 2012
CannondaleKid
avatar

 Guides 43
 Routes 141
 Photos 21,934
 Triplogs 2,261

71 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
Adams Mesa - Sycamore CanyonPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 06 2012
CannondaleKid
Hiking3.82 Miles 1,307 AEG
Hiking3.82 Miles   3 Hrs   26 Mns   1.53 mph
1,307 ft AEG      56 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
In my wanderings through the Sycamore Canyon area I had never driven any of the roads north of the main wash so I figured I was due. I've tried to stay away from this area as much as possible on weekends due to the huge masses of ATV and gun enthusiasts and this was no exception. Although it was a Friday I knew I wanted to be out of there by early afternoon so I got an early start.

After a short drive around most of the mesa on the lookout for the best climbing routes I finally just made a choice and got started. I began from the north below the second rise from the west end. I headed straight for the westernmost peak with plans to loop back along the spine of the mesa, crossing over every peak on the way east.

Lots of steep climbing but thankfully the terrain was open enough even the cholla and buckhorn forests were easy to pass through unscathed. At one point as I was dropping down through a large rocky area I was attacked by a large bee. Thankfully it wasn't in the stinging mood but it just kept flying full speed into me, bouncing off and circling back around to hit me again and again. As it turned out I was passing very close to a massive nest and I suppose the bee was warning me off... and it worked, I moved away fast.

By time I had reached the USCGS marked summit (second peak of the mesa from the east) it was getting close to the time I wanted to bail out of the Sycamore Creek area, so I had to make a decision. With another long and steep descent plus the ascent up the last peak ahead of me, and of course the return just as rough and time-consuming I decided to wrap it up and head back. Good thing I did because on my way out to the Beeline the waves of ATV's, motorcyles and trucks pulling huge campers, trailers and/or toy-haulers were flowing in and the gunfire was already a constant.

This was definitely rattlesnake country with plenty of prey and uncountable numbers of holes in the ground but even though the temperature did get high enough for them to be out I saw none. :( I was hoping to add to my snake video collection. Oh well, I'll be back soon to summit the easternmost peak of the mesa so I should have another chance.

I'm posting a small set of photo's on HAZ but the full set of 55 photos is here:
http://changephoenix.com/jpserver/web/public/album.php?id=77
Fauna
Fauna
Turkey Vulture
Named place
Named place
Adams Mesa Fountain Park
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CannondaleKid
Jan 21 2012
FLYING_FLIVER
avatar

 Routes 211
 Photos 8,861
 Triplogs 243

male
 Joined Jan 28 2010
 Fountain Hills,
Adams Mesa - Sycamore CanyonPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 21 2012
FLYING_FLIVER
Hiking2.80 Miles 1,152 AEG
Hiking2.80 Miles   3 Hrs   38 Mns   1.14 mph
1,152 ft AEG   1 Hour   10 Mns Break20 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Adams Mesa is just west of the intersection of Rte 87 (Beeline) and Bush highway, in what is sometimes referred to as the Sycamore Creek wash area. It appears the mesa has 4 major "peaks" making up its high points, with a benchmark on the highest peak. There are no trails to the mesa, or up to any of the high points. Bushwhacking through desert vegetation is the only way to explore the area.

My main incentive was to find & photograph ADAMS Triangulation benchmark and all its related marks. I found all four benchmarks. :D
The original surveyors in 1935, didn't note their route to the benchmark, but the 1981 surveyors did. They drove on a dirt road from just north of the intersection of Rte 87 and Bush highway all the way to Sycamore Creek wash, then went west up the wash for a couple miles, then took a dim track road back southeast. They "packed" from that point, up to the highest point of Adams Mesa. Normally, I try to take the same route noted on the "To Reach" portion of the benchmark's datasheet, but my vehicle couldn't do that. I took a different drive-route to start my "pack" (hike).

Just west of Rte 87 and Bush highway, I drove down a ridge-line dirt road, as far as my SUV could handle, and started hiking to the high point of the mesa. I had to laugh on my bushwhack to the base of Adams Mesa, because I felt like I was on a slow-motion roller-coaster. I had to bushwhack up-&-down, up-&-down, four or five times on small ridge-lines and washes in order to get to the base of the mesa. From a distance, that area looks like ripples in the earth or an accordion partially open.

Once I reached the correct area of the mesa, I hiked up to a saddle, found Adams Azimuth mark, and then made a 90 degree turn and went up to the high point, which was the location of Adams Triangulation mark and its two reference marks. I was surprised to see all the thick vegetation on the mesa. The normal desert plant life was quite abundant, which made for a careful trek up to the top. Once up there, it was like hiking in an overgrown, unkept "pointy needle" garden.
After many photos, I hiked back down using the same track I used to get up there.

Excellent "close-to-town" hike, with great views from the top, even though the day was uncharacteristically cloudy. I'll be sure to explore the rest of the Adams Mesa peaks another day.
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Not All Those Who Wander Are Lost
J.R.R.TOLKIEN
average hiking speed 1.56 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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