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Juniper Ridge Loop - 1 member in 3 triplogs has rated this an average 4 ( 1 to 5 best )
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May 17 2015
ads99
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 Guides 1
 Routes 11
 Photos 49
 Triplogs 15

77 male
 Joined Oct 28 2014
 Tucson, AZ
Juniper Ridge LoopPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar May 17 2015
ads99
Hiking6.00 Miles 472 AEG
Hiking6.00 Miles
472 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
First, I was the only car in the parking lot, and saw no one on the trail - so this is a very solitary place. Scenic, but not exhilarating. It had rained hard two days before and the ground was still soft - saw lots of tracks for deer, elk, and wild horses - yes, wild horses, they have 'em here. Trail varies from narrow forest and open meadow, to dirt roads, and fire trails. Note: around "J13" the gps track deviates from the blue diamond markers. I did the markers, I'm sure either way is fine.
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Aug 19 2014
topohiker
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 Guides 14
 Routes 113
 Photos 4,567
 Triplogs 2,302

male
 Joined Oct 29 2005
 Scottsdale, AZ
General Crook Connector / Juniper Ridge LO, AZ 
General Crook Connector / Juniper Ridge LO, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Aug 19 2014
topohiker
Hiking35.49 Miles 4,163 AEG
Hiking35.49 Miles   12 Hrs   35 Mns   3.13 mph
4,163 ft AEG   1 Hour   15 Mns Break
 
1st trip
This was the bizarro weather day!

I'm used to leaving PHX in the sun/heat. Then when arriving in rim country, it would rain from noon till I left.This time it was pouring rain when I got to Ord. In fact there was fog on the beeline. It poured to about Heber. The rain stopped and I saw some blue in the clouds.
On the way home there was clear skies all way till I got to Mt. Ord.

Now the hike!

"A tale of two trails"

Since its close to a 3 hour drive to the Lewis Canyon TH, I wanted to squeeze out as much hiking as I could. So I planned on doing the General Crook Connector/Cottonwood trail and the Juniper Ridge trail. Both start at the same place.

General Crook Connector
This trail been a mystery for me since I finished the General Crook trail. Last year I tried to find where it the Gen Crook ended, but I couldn't. I had the route in the GPS, but there was no trail.

This time I started at the other end by Pinedale. I got the campground and found the trail-head. There was a really nice trail map sign.I would say it was the nicest map I've ever seen. There are pegs in it representing the trail markers.

The hike out was nice. There was a light rain through the day. Only 3 times it rained so hard that I had to put my rain jacket on. After 6 miles, the Gen Crook Connection trail ended and the Cottonwood wash trail started. I saw 2 Gen Crook Chevron on 2 trees :? ! I thought Bruce was playing a joke on me :) . I think that the cottonwood trail might have been part of the Gen Crook trail at one time. This would explain why the Gen Crook connector trail doesn’t actually connect to the Gen Crook trail.
The cottonwood trail by Bald / Butler points was steep and loose. The rain made it slick and I fell down once. The trail markers dumped me into the Cottonwood wash. This brought back memories of last year when I went the Cottonwood wash lookin’ for trail. It started to pour and the road/wash started to fill up with water. I saw the BBQ that I went past year and decided enough. I was concerned if it keep raining the wash would fill up and plus I had my mind set on going to the Juniper Ridge look out. I turned around. On the way back I avoided the slick trail by the Bald / Butler points by going around it on forest road.

Juniper Ridge Lookout

I got to the campground a little before 6 and was determined to hit the LO before dark. The Juniper Ridge trail has 2 loops within it. There’s a short and long loop. Then there's a LO connector. Due to daylight, I took the shortest route to the LO. The trail hops road to road and the last 1.5 miles is trail. The trail is super easy to follow. There are trail markers everywhere. I got to the LO just as it turned dark and got some pictures in. You can see the Show Low city lights from the LO. After the sun dropped, the stars came out and a bitter cold wild started to blow. I had to put on two jackets for return trip. The hike back in the dark was a blast. The trail markers light up from a far distance. I flew down the trail JJ style! It think it was easier hiking the Juniper Ridge trail in the dark. When I got to the Jeep, the temps dropped down to 52!


It was a really fun hike. On the drive up, I was doubtful if I wanted to hike in a rain storm. Most of the hike had no shade, so the
clouds /rain made the hike enjoyable (minus the slippery mud).

So my motto for the hike was "When given lemons, make lemonade". My wife would say that I'm just too stubborn.
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"Everywhere is walking distance...If you have the time"
-Stephen Wright
Feb 03 2013
TrekSafari
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 Guides 7
 Routes 24
 Photos 16
 Triplogs 14

male
 Joined Feb 19 2004
 SunCity,AZ
Juniper Ridge LoopPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 03 2013
TrekSafari
Hiking6.00 Miles 472 AEG
Hiking6.00 Miles   4 Hrs      1.50 mph
472 ft AEG
 
no photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Juniper Trail West Loop
October 2012. Sunday, I returned to Pinedale Road but went south to locate the Juniper Ridge Trail. I drove through the small village and found "Old Highway 260" and headed east to the trailhead for Juniper Ridge Trail. I followed the blue trail markers that were attached to various trees. There was a map at the trailhead that matched my old maps. The first segment of the trail headed due south then curved east. Then it headed north. When it dropped off the ridge, I got confused, so my GPS shows my backtracking to locate the missing blue markers. The trail headed east again. But it was time for me to return to the Chevy. So I walked up to a dirt road. My GPS said go west along the road, so I did. But I left that road for a shortcut along a powerline road. My GPS got me back to the Chevy,
Monday, I returned to the village of Pinedale and continued south to Lewis Canyon Group Campgrounds. From here the General Crook Connector Trail headed due west. I took it from the campgrounds for a brief distance before discovering that the 2002 forest fire destroyed much of the forest here. So I returned to the trailhead and took another segment of the Juniper Ridge Trail. It headed south before crossing the Pinedale Road. Again the trail was blazed with the blue diamond markers. Soon after I walked through a gate (N34.27158, W110.23172), I lost the trail (N34.27110, W110.22807) and decided to use the GPS to return the Pinedale Road and use a direct route to the Chevy. Unfortunately I had to cross a couple of fences. But it was a good walk.
From Show Low drive west on 260; turn onto Pinedale Road; drive south past the small community to a Y in the road. To reach the north trailhead (N34.26272, W110.09975): take a left turn onto Old Hwy-260, the parking lot is on the right. To access the west trailhead (N34.28277, W110.24323): go straight ahead to the Lewis Canyon Group Campgrounds. After checking in with the campground host and drive midway around the outer loop to the small parking lot, the trailhead is on the right.
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average hiking speed 1.5 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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