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Phippen Recon - Constellation - 1 member in 2 triplogs has rated this an average 3 ( 1 to 5 best )
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May 28 2016
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 Guides 9
 Routes 818
 Photos 11,137
 Triplogs 1,975

66 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Constellation Willow Lake Loop, AZ 
Constellation Willow Lake Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar May 28 2016
The_EagleTriplogs 1,975
Hiking9.35 Miles 1,040 AEG
Hiking9.35 Miles   5 Hrs   5 Mns   2.29 mph
1,040 ft AEG   1 Hour    Break14 LBS Pack
 
The convocation of Deb and I spent, a portion of the day playin' in the bolder wonderland of The Constellation Trail System and Willow Lake.

I was surprised to still see the Cormorants in the Huge Cottonwood tree, on the Cottonwood Spur trail. I counted at least 8 nests in that tree with 16+. The roosting noises they make are a cross between the oinking of a pig and the noises penguins make. Kind of eerie actually.

There are endless possibilities out here, with the two lakes in close proximity to each other and all the bolder exploring you could do.

It got a little warmer than the forecast high I believe, but the breezes kept it tolerable.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Willow Creek Reservoir 51-75% full 51-75% full
_____________________
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry 🦅
Apr 16 2016
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 Guides 9
 Routes 818
 Photos 11,137
 Triplogs 1,975

66 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Constellation Willow-Watson Loop, AZ 
Constellation Willow-Watson Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 16 2016
The_EagleTriplogs 1,975
Hiking16.19 Miles 1,756 AEG
Hiking16.19 Miles   7 Hrs   38 Mns   2.54 mph
1,756 ft AEG   1 Hour   15 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Joe through a dart at the Constellation Trail system and said, come up with something. I didn't know anything about this "Little Gem" so I started downloading stuff. There are 11 trails in the Constellation Trail system, totaling less than 5 miles. So that wasn't going to make the drive to Prescott worth it. I'd looped Watson lake before and enjoyed the heck out of it. I'd always wanted to loop Willow Lake also, so it was on.

The Constellation Trail System is a wonderful group of of short trails through a boulder wonderland. Officially it's a self-enclosed system. But as we found on the way back, there is a trail that connects this with the Willow Dells system and Willow Lake. The Ron James Approach Trail does not show to connect on the maps, but it does. There is no signage and it's not obvious though.

All but the east side of Willow Lake looked like just a means to connect the loop, but then we stumbled on the Cottonwood Spur. Some of the biggest Cottonwood stands I've seen. `

Willow Lake Video :next: https://youtube.com ... YbKg
Back on the Jan Alfano Trail and then we jumped over to Watson Lake, to do the loop there.

Watson Lake Video :next: https://youtube.com ... CTBU

The highlight on this loop is the Lakeshore Trail and the Over The Hill Trail, taking you to the Granite Creek Dam.

Granite Creek Dam, Watson Lake Video :next: https://youtube.com ... nVp0
A little road walk got us back over to the Willow Dells Trails.

Once again the hiking was great, except for 1/2 hour bug storm we ran through.

I really enjoyed looping these two Granite infested lakes, and the weather was perfect!

A great time out with the Squad.

On the day....A Gopher snake, Squirrels, Cottontail rabbits, Cormorants, all sorts of Ducks, Bluejays, Blue Herons, A hawk diving out of the sky right in front of us snagging a bird.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Watson Lake 51-75% full 51-75% full

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Willow Creek Pools to trickle Pools to trickle

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Willow Creek Reservoir 51-75% full 51-75% full
_____________________
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry 🦅
1 archive
average hiking speed 2.41 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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