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Cow Poke Trail - MSPN - 7 members in 26 triplogs have rated this an average 2.7 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Nov 12 2017
KBKB
avatar

 Guides 3
 Routes 22
 Photos 2,112
 Triplogs 231

57 male
 Joined Apr 22 2012
 Fountain Hills,
Maricopa Trail - North of Dove Valley, AZ 
Maricopa Trail - North of Dove Valley, AZ
 
Mtn Biking avatar Nov 12 2017
KBKB
Mtn Biking32.53 Miles 1,526 AEG
Mtn Biking32.53 Miles   4 Hrs   56 Mns   6.59 mph
1,526 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
My friend Nick joined me to explore some more trails in the Granite Mountain / Brown's Ranch area on Sunday.

In order, I rode: Bootlegger, Granite Mountain Loop, Branding Iron, The Divide, Hawknest, Dove Valley, Maricopa Trail (in Tonto National Forest, to Cave Creek Ranger Station, and then somewhat beyond, out and back), Dove Valley, West Express, Malpais, Hawknest, Buckshot, Corral, Dry Gulch, Cholla Mountain Loop, Balanced Rock, Granite Mountain Loop, Granite Mountain, Black Hill, Monument, 136th St Express, Cowpoke, Granite Mountain Loop, Saddlehorn, Bootlegger.

Nick rode all of the above with me, but returned via a more direct route when we got to the intersection of Granite Mountain Loop & Granite Mountain. My wife joined us for the first part of this ride, but ended up returning early as she whacked her shin just below the knee with a pedal. (It was quite swollen; she returned home to ice it.)

My main goal for the day was to look at more of the Maricopa Trail north of the Preserve Boundary. I rode some of it several weeks ago by myself. This week we rode it all the way to the Cave Creek Ranger Station - there is a spur trail which goes there - and then slightly beyond.

The section of the Maricopa Trail from the northern Preserve boundary to Bartlett Dam Rd is a fairly mellow singletrack. It's also fairly well beaten in, though not quite as well as most of the trails in the Preserve. It's mostly an easy uphill as you work your way north, with several wash crossings along the way. It crosses the powerline road three times. However, it also crosses several other roads and trails which seem to be popular with the OHV crowd. We saw (and heard) several motorcycles while we were out. There are a total of six road crossings (counting the powerline road, but not counting Bartlett Dam Rd) in the last mile of trail south of Bartlett Dam Rd. While there should not be any motorized traffic on the Maricopa Trail, there is definitely motorized traffic on these roads which cross the trail, so it's important to watch for cross traffic.

Nick and I rode to the ranger station in hopes of getting a map, but it wasn't open.

We started riding the next segment that goes northward, but we only rode out perhaps half a mile. In that half mile that we rode, the trail stayed close (even under) the powerlines and had numerous wash crossings, perhaps as many in that half mile as we had encountered during the entire 3.3 mile stretch from the Preserve boundary to Bartlett Dam Rd. These seemed deeper too, and the track was not beaten down enough for me to feel comfortable taking the downhill at speed so that I could coast up the other side.

When we returned to the Preserve, we took Dove Valley to the West Express Trail, which was new to me. West Express felt like an old motorcycle track (which it probably is). It was okay, but I like the new section of Stagecoach (which I rode last week) better. They both intersect with Malpais too. (I haven't ridden West Express south of Malpais yet.) The West Express Trail is more direct (shorter) than the new section of Stagecoach. Stagecoach is, IMO, better constructed and a lot more fun to ride. The other really nice thing about the new segment of Stagecoach is that it provides a bit over five uninterrupted miles of trail - there are no other intersecting trails from where it crosses the powerline road until it terminates/intersects with the Malpais Trail.

Towards the end of my ride, after leaving Nick, I rode north past the Granite Mountain Trailhead on 136th St Express and then took Cowpoke over to Granite Mountain Loop. I rarely ride these trails; in fact, I don't think I've been on them since another friend showed them to me several years ago. Cowpoke definitely goes uphill, but it's a surprisingly gentle grade to get up to Granite Mountain Loop. Cowpoke is also a very scenic trail with interesting rocks and numerous saguaros along the way. I should endeavor to ride it more often.
_____________________
1 archive
Oct 31 2017
RowdyandMe
avatar

 Guides 6
 Routes 358
 Photos 14,485
 Triplogs 1,630

65 male
 Joined Jul 16 2012
 Deer Valley, AZ
Cow Poke Trail - MSPNPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 31 2017
RowdyandMe
Hiking9.77 Miles 700 AEG
Hiking9.77 Miles   4 Hrs   13 Mns   2.58 mph
700 ft AEG      26 Mns Break5 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Culture
Culture
Cag Shot
Named place
Named place
Michelin Man Saguaro

dry Bootlegger Tank Dry Dry
_____________________
Rowdy and Widowmaker
3 archives
Feb 24 2017
Sun_Ray
avatar

 Routes 7
 Photos 753
 Triplogs 1,016

71 male
 Joined Sep 09 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
North Diablo Trail - MSPNPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 24 2017
Sun_Ray
Hiking9.19 Miles 518 AEG
Hiking9.19 Miles   3 Hrs   59 Mns   2.87 mph
518 ft AEG      47 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
As a member of the 'All Trails Club' in the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy, whenever a new map comes out with addtional trails I need to hike them to maintain my membership. I've been putting off North and South Diablo as they are about equal distance from most of the tailheads and farther than I've wanted to hike. North and South Diablo are designed with mountain bikers in mind as they both have black diamond rated areas. Decided to park near the corner of 135th St and Dove Valley and go in at a step over in the fence. This is what Judy and I ended up doing: Dove Valley Trail, Cow Poke, Granite Mountain Loop, Branding Iron, S.Diablo, N. Diablo, The Divide, Branding Iron, Granite Mountain Loop and Dove Valley. The Diablo trails are not marked with mileage markers as there is not room on the map and there are several small loop on both trails. I did a real poor job of estimating the mileage in the area to be about a mile and it turned out to be 3.5! So my planned 6+ hike turned into 9+. We had the time and water so no big deal. I've now completed all the new trials in the Northern section of Brown's Ranch area. A new trailhead at the corner of Dynamite and Pima Rd will open sometime in 2018....so I've got some time before I have new trials to hike.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
_____________________
Brian
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday......there is no SOMEDAY!
3 archives
Nov 13 2016
DarthStiller
avatar

 Guides 15
 Routes 234
 Photos 6,048
 Triplogs 438

50 male
 Joined Jul 05 2006
 Mesa, AZ
Soapberry Wash Trail - MSPNPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 13 2016
DarthStiller
Hiking10.60 Miles 622 AEG
Hiking10.60 Miles   3 Hrs   55 Mns   2.71 mph
622 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Got out for a quick morning hike with a later kickoff for the Steelers, doing a few more trails I haven't hiked yet. Right at dawn I saw another saguaro with about 5 hawks sitting on the tops of all the arms.

I took the 136th St. Express Trail and finished of the last section of that I hadn't done, then did a figure 8 of the Dove Valley, Cowpoke and Old Paint Wash Trails, the took the Old Paint Wash Trail up to the Soapberry Wash Trail, Desperado Trail, then went east on the Coyote Canyon Trail, back to the Dove Valley Trail, and did a section of the Renegade Trail. I circled back taking the Renegade-Soapberry Wash connector to Soapberry, then got back on the Renegade eastward again to 136th St and back to the TH.

I was hoping to finish up a section of the Cholla Mtn Trail, but if I did that, it would have been over 15 miles, which is more than I wanted to do today. I also forgot to take my snacks, so I was ready to get home for lunch.
Flora
Flora
Saguaro - Crested
Named place
Named place
Michelin Man Saguaro
_____________________
Mar 27 2016
mazatzal
avatar

 Routes 31
 Photos 2,166
 Triplogs 1,074

62 male
 Joined Jul 28 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
McDowell Preserve North, AZ 
McDowell Preserve North, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Mar 27 2016
mazatzal
Hiking14.70 Miles 1,170 AEG
Hiking14.70 Miles   5 Hrs   30 Mns   2.99 mph
1,170 ft AEG      35 Mns Break
 
Another loop in MSPN :roll:

Turpentine-WhiskeyBottle-Latigo-118St-Watershed-Maverick-ChollaLoop-Stagecoach-HighDesert-TheDivide-BrandingIron-GraniteLoop-CoyoteCanyon-SoapberryWash-DoveValley-CowPoke-GraniteLoop-Bootlegger

Great weather not too hot and some nice breeze from time to time. Saw a gila monster but I only got a rubbish photo of its tail before it disappeared under a rock :tt:
Flora
Flora
Saguaro - Crested
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
_____________________
2 archives
Feb 24 2016
Sun_Ray
avatar

 Routes 7
 Photos 753
 Triplogs 1,016

71 male
 Joined Sep 09 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
Old Paint Wash - MSPNPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 24 2016
Sun_Ray
Hiking5.24 Miles 335 AEG
Hiking5.24 Miles   2 Hrs   24 Mns   2.18 mph
335 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
I did it! Completed all the trails added to the Northern Section Map in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve dated August 2015. These are the trails that are North of Brown's, Cholla and Granite Mountains. They total about 30 miles, but that's not the point as you need to hike many miles just to get to them. Pretty sure Crzy4AZ has completed them also but is behind on her trip logs. That means HAZ'ers are 2 of the 4 hikers to complete ALL the trails in the preserve. I also think we are the only ones that hiked them all versus others who used their mountain bike on many of the trails.
_____________________
Brian
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday......there is no SOMEDAY!
1 archive
Feb 04 2016
AZWanderingBea
avatar

 Guides 27
 Routes 62
 Photos 2,620
 Triplogs 700

63 male
 Joined Jan 23 2008
 Phoenix, AZ
Gamboling Around Granite, AZ 
Gamboling Around Granite, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 04 2016
AZWanderingBear
Hiking8.20 Miles 642 AEG
Hiking8.20 Miles   2 Hrs   54 Mns   2.96 mph
642 ft AEG      8 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Very nice day for a hike, but we wanted something interesting but not too demanding. The area around Granite Mountain sounded just right. Used a bunch of trails to construct and easy 8ish mile route. A few folks on the trails, mostly close to the trailhead. Enjoyed all the granite outcroppings and Coyote Canyon was a nice surprise.
_____________________
All you have is your fire...
And the place you need to reach
2 archives
Feb 04 2016
AZBeaver
avatar

 Photos 326
 Triplogs 124

65 female
 Joined Jan 04 2014
 Phoenix, AZ
Dancing in Granite, AZ 
Dancing in Granite, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 04 2016
AZBeaver
Hiking8.20 Miles 642 AEG
Hiking8.20 Miles   2 Hrs   54 Mns   2.96 mph
642 ft AEG      8 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
This is a perfect set of trails to take out-of-state visitors. Lots of beautiful granite boulders, desert views in every direction, easy, smooth trails. We did this back in December in the rain and it was really "mistical" with the clouds billowing below the hills. Love doing it today on a beautiful sunny day. Weather was perfect.
_____________________
1 archive
Jan 17 2016
New2hyk
avatar

 Photos 5,652
 Triplogs 236

53 female
 Joined Jan 04 2012
 scottsdale, AZ
Granite Mountain Loop Trail - MSPNPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 17 2016
New2hyk
Hiking6.50 Miles 320 AEG
Hiking6.50 Miles
320 ft AEG10 LBS Pack
 no routes
_____________________
Dec 31 2015
Oregon_Hiker
avatar

 Guides 8
 Routes 337
 Photos 5,898
 Triplogs 440

73 male
 Joined Dec 07 2010
 Phoenix, AZ
Bootlegger Trail - MSPNPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 31 2015
Oregon_Hiker
Hiking4.40 Miles 252 AEG
Hiking4.40 Miles   1 Hour   48 Mns   2.44 mph
252 ft AEG10 LBS Pack
 
Partners none no partners
Mrs OH was feeling the Holiday bulge so wanted to get some exercise. It's a rare occasion when she goes on a hike with me. She doesn't care for my usual off trail explorations so took her on a hike on the well groomed trails in the MSPN. We did a loop hike starting from the Granite Mtn TH on the Bootlegger Trail then looping back via the Cow Poke Trail and the 136th St Express Trail.
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Sep 07 2015
Crzy4AZ
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 96
 Photos 2,588
 Triplogs 595

46 female
 Joined Apr 02 2007
 Scottsdale, AZ
Cow Poke Trail - MSPNPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 07 2015
Crzy4AZ
Hiking1.83 Miles 139 AEG
Hiking1.83 Miles   1 Hour      1.83 mph
139 ft AEG
 
no photosets
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners partners
Baby4AZ
GI Jones
LilGuy4AZ
We wanted some sort of family hike - but took forever to get packed up and was very hot by the time we got started around 8am. George walked on his own some but needed to be carried. Turned around when Brad's water was half out - - Caroline was devastated and had a mini-tantrum since she had plenty of water. We talked about how sad it would be to have a trail rescue or Daddy in the hospital from dehydration. She eventually understood. Good lesson that in a group hike you are only as strong as the person with the least amount of water.

So we regrouped and went to a super swanky fancy ritzy park by the fire station on Alma School Road. Kids had fun and Brad and I stretched out and relaxed on the benches and had a picnic.

Ran into Paul on MSC Patrol on Cow Poke trail - he had a huge pick axe in one hand and big clippers in the other hand - - he looked a little bit like a serial killer - but I know him well and about Patrol duties - made me laugh a little though thinking of what an out of towner would surmise running into him on a remote trail!
_____________________
Aug 10 2015
mt98dew
avatar

 Guides 16
 Routes 19
 Photos 398
 Triplogs 1,454

50 male
 Joined Oct 24 2010
 Phoenix,Az
Cow Poke Trail - MSPNPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Run/Jog avatar Aug 10 2015
mt98dew
Run/Jog5.21 Miles 112 AEG
Run/Jog5.21 Miles      58 Mns   5.39 mph
112 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Returned to the Mecca of trails. If you are not concerned about elevation, this is one of the best trail systems out there. Got to the Granite Mountain TH around 1pm. Goal was to do a loop involving the Cow Poke Trail. Went in on the Powerline Trail and then took the Granite Mountain Trail to the Granite Mountain Loop Trail which got me to the Cow Poke trail. Took this trail all the way out to 136th St and as I did so I realized that the Cow Poke trail posted on HAZ and all the provided maps at the TH is no longer accurate. The trail now extends past the 136th St. Trail (which surprisingly curves and is heading in a westward direction when it is crossed by the Cow Poke) and ends at the Old Paint Wash Trail that appears to have been recently added and is not yet on any maps. The Cow Poke ends here, so I turned around and took the 136th St. Trail back to the Granite Mountain TH. Met one staff member who was cutting up a fallen saguaro on the 136th. Temps were surprisingly comfortable, considering the time of day. It was slightly overcast. I guess that makes all the difference.
_____________________
Jul 08 2015
The_Eagle
avatar

 Guides 5
 Routes 792
 Photos 9,159
 Triplogs 1,080

63 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Bootlegger-Coyote Cyn-Granite Mtn Loop, AZ 
Bootlegger-Coyote Cyn-Granite Mtn Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jul 08 2015
The_Eagle
Hiking8.51 Miles 665 AEG
Hiking8.51 Miles   2 Hrs   52 Mns   3.06 mph
665 ft AEG      5 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
The Turtle needed to get off of the concrete trails and do something different. I showed him some boulders ans saguaros.

We hit up the Northeast portion of the McDowell Sonoran Preserve and some new trails or both of us. Once again got lucky with the weather. Upper 70's to start, probably low 90's to finish. Clouds filtered the sun and the breeze blew just enough to keep us cool.

The Coyote Canyon Trail was a pleasant surprise and interesting area.

Lots of Doves, Quail, Rock Squirrels, but that's about it. 2 bikers, and 3 hikers were all we saw.

Good hike Mr Turtle... Lets get that arm healed so we can get you on some other hikes.

** Note to future hikers that want to hike out of Trailheads on the Eastern side of this complex. There is No Parking at any of the Trailheads, other that the Granite Mountain Trailhead **
Flora
Flora
Saguaro - Crested
Fauna
Fauna
Desert Tortoise
Named place
Named place
Little Granite Mountain - MSP North
_____________________
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
Jul 08 2015
Tortoise_Hiker
avatar

 Routes 78
 Photos 7,201
 Triplogs 2,562

58 male
 Joined Apr 02 2005
 Mesa, AZ
Bootlegger-Coyote Cyn-Granite Mtn Loop, AZ 
Bootlegger-Coyote Cyn-Granite Mtn Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jul 08 2015
Tortoise_Hiker
Hiking8.51 Miles 665 AEG
Hiking8.51 Miles   2 Hrs   52 Mns   2.97 mph
665 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Bruce and I hit some more MSPN trails. We got a late start but the humidity seemed lower today. We also had cloud cover from time to time. I always like when there are boulders mixed in with the Saguaro. We saw a couple male Cardinals flying in cicrles along with lots of Quail, Dove, Rabbits, Squirrels, and a few lizards. The trail was in good shape and only saw a few people. Bruce even pointed out a couple of nice Crested Saguaro 8) ! Nice local area and the company was top notch. :y:
_____________________
Tortoise Hiking. Stop and smell the Petrichor.
May 23 2015
mazatzal
avatar

 Routes 31
 Photos 2,166
 Triplogs 1,074

62 male
 Joined Jul 28 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
McDowell Preserve Far North Area, AZ 
McDowell Preserve Far North Area, AZ
 
Hiking avatar May 23 2015
mazatzal
Hiking8.50 Miles 550 AEG
Hiking8.50 Miles   3 Hrs   30 Mns   2.55 mph
550 ft AEG      10 Mns Break
 no routes
We went to check out some of the new trails in the McDowell Preserve far north area (thanks to Crzy4AZ for posting the link to the updated map)

Hawksnest :next: Old Paint Wash :next: Soapberry :next: Coyote Canyon :next: Granite Mtn loop :next: Cow poke :next: Dove Valley :next: Barb’s :next: 136th St Express

Hazy views to the east, cleared a little but the mirror was still cloudy. We saw another water catchment 'tank', still had a little water.

The trails were pretty quiet - we saw a few bikers and 2 equestrians.
Flora
Flora
Saguaro - Crested
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
_____________________
3 archives
May 22 2015
Crzy4AZ
avatar

 Guides 31
 Routes 96
 Photos 2,588
 Triplogs 595

46 female
 Joined Apr 02 2007
 Scottsdale, AZ
Hawknest Old Paint Wash loop MSPN, AZ 
Hawknest Old Paint Wash loop MSPN, AZ
 
Hiking avatar May 22 2015
Crzy4AZ
Hiking5.95 Miles 329 AEG
Hiking5.95 Miles   2 Hrs   21 Mns   2.90 mph
329 ft AEG      18 Mns Break
 
no photosets
1st trip
Friday morning date hike - very unusual but Brad took the day off for our Memorial Day weekend trip to Pine/Strawberry. So it was his idea to get in a hike just the two of us before our trip. Was last day of Kindergarten for Caroline - what a great year it's been.

Picked this loop to explore Old Paint Wash trail in its entirety and to make sure I can legitimately say I'm still in "ATC" all trails club with the newest trails added March 2015. We had hiked Hawknest to what I thought was the end on Christmas Day and sure enough the signs do show it finishing at that bent and chopped saguaro. However - it will extend further west by mid-summer. Construction on Phase 2C trails is complete for the summer - but signs won't be up (and another new Northern region map) until mid-summer. So for now I've done all the signed portions of the "super north"-eastern region of the Preserve.

The 0.5 north/south segment between Hawknest and Old Paint Wash is called "dove valley extension" on our MSC patrol reporting page; however none of the maps call it that. We will see how it all sorts out. There's an old AZ Game and Fish water tank for game at OP11 marker with a bunch of older signs and barbed wire.

Old Paint Wash is not really a trail - it is a natural sandy wash. You have to trudge through it. Seems like bikers would hate it - might have to push bike through some parts of it. Dove Valley Trail runs parallel to it with multiple places you can connect between the two trails.

Took Cow Poke trail (the newly extended part) back to 136th Street Express and saw dozens of beautiful saguaro blooms. A few at eye level. Saguaro stands around Granite Mountain are the best in the Preserve. Now I've done all 6.7 miles of 136th Street Express.

Home for lunch - nap - packed for trip - got to cabin by 8pm. Very nice start to the weekend.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
saguaro blooms
_____________________
Feb 14 2015
neilends
avatar

 Guides 8
 Routes 16
 Photos 182
 Triplogs 140

47 male
 Joined Jan 29 2008
 Scottsdale
MSP North Loop, AZ 
MSP North Loop, AZ
 
Mtn Biking avatar Feb 14 2015
neilends
Mtn Biking11.90 Miles 844 AEG
Mtn Biking11.90 Miles
844 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
This was a mountain bike meander-patrol, with the aim of furthering my All Trails Challenge progress as an MSP Steward. Biking these flatter trails is just amazing. I'm getting a real high from looping and turning and dipping along them. Of course the flattest ones are still hilly here and there, and I wound up walking up slopes a few times. For the most part though, sticking to trails labeled on the official map as "easy" was a good bet.

Relatively crowded throughout, with bikers and hikers and a bunch of horse riders too. Balanced Rock had so many people (7-8) crowding around it that I didn't bother taking any photos. I'll come back another day.

The bike ride revealed at least 2 trails that aren't on HAZ yet. Will add them later.
_____________________
"Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence." --John Adams
Feb 08 2015
New2hyk
avatar

 Photos 5,652
 Triplogs 236

53 female
 Joined Jan 04 2012
 scottsdale, AZ
Granite Mountain Loop Trail - MSPNPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 08 2015
New2hyk
Hiking4.60 Miles 400 AEG
Hiking4.60 Miles
400 ft AEG10 LBS Pack
 no routes
Meteorology
Meteorology
Moon
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
_____________________
Jan 28 2015
New2hyk
avatar

 Photos 5,652
 Triplogs 236

53 female
 Joined Jan 04 2012
 scottsdale, AZ
Coyote Canyon Loop MSPPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 28 2015
New2hyk
Hiking3.60 Miles 115 AEG
Hiking3.60 Miles
115 ft AEG10 LBS Pack
 no routes
Since I already hiked my monthly goal, decided to goof off today. Went to dove valley pseudo TH. There is one car already there and parked behind it. Later on found out that I blocked the gate :o . Sorry preserve folk. Someone left a very nice note on the gate now asking not to block it.
Did the loop ccw and there are no signs still. I followed 2 hikers first. Then stopped at the water tank which has no water despite rain :( . Saw a hunter and had a nice chit chat. He is hunting quails and really wants the big buck lot of people already told me about. He said there are 2 more weeks of hunting season left.
Off I went and ran into another group of hikers. My third time seeing that group this winter and chatted a bit. Then I kept going marvelling the beauty of coyote canyon. Saw lots of sps of fern there(should be nick named fern canyon). Wild flowers are starting :y: . Glad they don't move around like fauna :sl:
Saw no one else in the canyon. Heard horse like sounds twice. Looked around bit saw no horses or any other wildlife :?
As I am on granite mtn trail, there is a flight school helicopter practicing all sorts of feats. Glad I was not in it :)
Had a secret wish to see large animals today but no sightings :(
On the other hand, I photographed a new bird for me-abert's towhee :y:
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
_____________________
Jan 19 2015
topohiker
avatar

 Guides 13
 Routes 112
 Photos 4,377
 Triplogs 1,755

male
 Joined Oct 29 2005
 Scottsdale, AZ
McDowell Sonoran Wandering, AZ 
McDowell Sonoran Wandering, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 19 2015
topohiker
Hiking33.24 Miles 2,304 AEG
Hiking33.24 Miles   12 Hrs   25 Mns   3.09 mph
2,304 ft AEG   1 Hour   40 Mns Break
 
1st trip
I started out at the Fraesfield TH. I was the only vehicle in the lot. I headed down the Gooseneck trail to where I left off the previous week.

I explored Redbird / service road connectors before heading back on the Redbird trail. When I went past the Fraesfield TH, the lot was half full. The mountain bikers came out in full-force at 10am.

I headed North by taking:
Blackhills trail
Bootlegger trail
Granite Mtn Loop trail
Cow Poke Trail
Dove Valley trail

I explored on the old BLM roads that are now part of the preserve. I went the Tonto forest Granite MNT boundary. There are numerous old BLM roads in this area. It looks like there are plans for a numerous new trails. I seen a bunch flagging for new trails.

On the way back I took the new Coyote Canyon trail. This trail is a loop that connects the Dove Valley trail with the Granite Mtn. Loop trail. The Coyote trail starts off is a cool canyon. It's about 90% done. The trail sign is taped on a post and one of intersections has a post without a sign.

I took the following trails back:
Granite Mtn. Loop trail
Bootlegger trail
136 Street Express trail
Morning Vista trail
Black Hills trail

The weather was perfect. Even though you're in a city park, you can get to the middle of no-where and explore. The Tonto Forest connection opens up a lot of possibilities.
Flora
Flora
Saguaro - Crested
_____________________
"Everywhere is walking distance...If you have the time"
-Stephen Wright
1 archive
average hiking speed 2.66 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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