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Sep 14 2018
markthurman53
avatar

 Guides 128
 Routes 635
 Photos 7,630
 Triplogs 518

67 male
 Joined Jun 27 2015
 Tucson, Arizona
Barbershop Dane Canyon Upper Loop, AZ 
Barbershop Dane Canyon Upper Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Sep 14 2018
markthurman53
Hiking6.40 Miles 673 AEG
Hiking6.40 Miles   2 Hrs   45 Mns   2.43 mph
673 ft AEG      7 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
On this trip I camped along the rim road between the upper reaches of Barbershop and Dane Canyons. On the first day of hiking I completed the lower portions of Merritt, Barbershop and Dane Canyons. By lower Barbershop I mean where it is joined by Dane Canyon. There is still an even more lower portion of Barbershop (to where it empties into West Clear Creek) but that will have to wait for another trip. On the second day I hike along the General Crook Trail to the upper reaches of Barbershop and return via Dane Canyon and back to my camp site. Decided to camp this time so I don’t have to drive 17 miles in and then back out 2 times. Of course camping means I don’t get the usual Pizza and Mexican food I usually get when in Payson, instead I get beef stew.

Barbershop Canyon

I hiked west along the rim road to about .5 miles east of FSR 139 and headed down hill, not downhill south but downhill north. Crossed the old General Crook Trail and almost immediately the ground was damp and mushy, a little further and I dropped down below a rather large rock that had a trickle of water coming from it. I designated this as the start of Barbershop Canyon. While this running water didn’t flow too far downstream it showed evidence that it was flowing pretty well a week or so earlier. Continuing down what appeared to be the stream it slowly got larger as more small streams entered from the south off the rim. Very soon you notice you are on a game trail that follows this creek and will continue all the way to the Barbershop Trail, 2 miles later. This trail is fairly well maintained, have to take my hat off to the elk for how well it was maintained (have to give credit to the deer and bear also because I saw their tracks here to). This trail actually follows along both sides of the stream a little further down; I guess the traffic is so heavy they put in a divided highway. This is a very pleasant hike all the way to the Barbershop Trail. Along the way you pass by three tanks that are in fairly bad condition being breached but still holding back some water. There was also a set of caves on the East side of the canyon about .5 miles up from the Barbershop Trail. Wonder how many bears have used these to hibernate in. At the Barbershop Trail I headed east to Dane Canyon.

Dane Canyon

At Dane Canyon I headed up stream. This is an easy 2 mile walk through a “U” shaped Canyon. Unlike Barbershop Canyon I was surprised at the lack of a well traveled game trail; in fact it was almost nonexistent. Not much to say about this portion of Dane Canyon, it’s almost a yawner. At about .5 miles from the rim road the area gets a little mushy from water seeping in from off the rim. Appears there is a spring there but I don’t see one called out on maps. Shortly after this the canyon gets a little steeper and harder to travel so I headed up the west slope to FSR 145 near where it joins the rim road. Not a real interesting portion of Dane Canyon but if you want to hike the whole canyon this is part of it.
_____________________
Sep 13 2018
markthurman53
avatar

 Guides 128
 Routes 635
 Photos 7,630
 Triplogs 518

67 male
 Joined Jun 27 2015
 Tucson, Arizona
Merrit Barbershop Dane Lower Loop, AZ 
Merrit Barbershop Dane Lower Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Sep 13 2018
markthurman53
Hiking14.10 Miles 1,277 AEG
Hiking14.10 Miles   7 Hrs   43 Mns   2.26 mph
1,277 ft AEG   1 Hour   28 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Lower Merritt

This trip to the rim is to finish up some undone sections of Barbershop and Dane Canyons. I started out on FSR 139c that follows the ridge between Merritt Draw and Barbershop Canyon. At about 2 miles in parked along 139c and continued on foot along 139c to FR 9735p, which is an old logging road now closed to vehicles. This old logging road takes you to the drop off point to Merritt Draw which is just at the point where Maverick Canyon enters Merritt Draw from the west. Merritt Draw at this point all the way to Barbershop Canyon is fairly easy to navigate unlike the central portion of Merritt Draw which is all choked up with dead fall. Both times I’ve been to Merritt Draw the central portion was dry but on this trip the lower portion the stream was flowing above ground. At about .4 miles from Maverick Canyon is Drift Fence Spring, I did not see the spring but I was not really looking for it either. After two miles of fairly easy walking along the stream Merritt Draw empties into Barbershop Canyon. The U Bar Trail also crosses Barbershop at this point.

Lower Barbershop

Lower Barbershop Canyon from the Merritt Draw intersection to the Dane Creek intersection is 1.6 miles. There was a trail crew working on the U Bar Trail where it crosses Barbershop Creek. After a short chat I continued on down Barbershop Canyon. This canyon is a little bit more overgrown than Merritt but still easy to walk with just a little bit of maneuvering around rocks and dead fall. In almost no time at all Dane Canyon joins Barbershop from the right. Took a short break at the Dane Barbershop junction and pondered about Barbershop Canyon as it continues on down to East Clear Creek, Wonder how doable that is, Oh well, that’s another day.

Dane Canyon

One look at Dane Canyon as I approached it from Barbershop Canyon and I got this feeling this was going to be pure torture. The entrance to the canyon was choked with brush. As I took my break I also kept thinking about how hard was Dane Canyon going to be. As I found out when I started hiking in Dane, it wasn’t as bad as I anticipated. It is more congested than the other canyons I was in but wasn’t terrible. I worried about nothing. This canyon would be a little harder if the water was higher especially in the marshy areas. Beautiful canyon and the almost 3 miles went by pretty quickly with all the scenery. Well worth the effort to see this lower part of Dane Canyon. I'm usually very careful about tripping or falling since I am alone but this canyon did me in twice. Luckily both falls didn't result in injury. The first time it was a hidden branch that snagged my boot the second time it was while crossing a stream stepping on a rock that had small logs on it hanging onto a bush to keep my balance and the logs under my feet shifted and I went down. The sad part is all while I was performing this maneuver I was thinking to myself this is a bad idea. I need to listen to that little voice in my head when it is screaming "BAD IDEA". I took the U Bar Trail where it crosses Dane Canyon back to Barbershop Trail and headed up Barbershop from there.

Barbershop Canyon

At the junction of the U Bar Trail and Barbershop Canyon I headed upstream about 3.5 miles to my exit point to FSR 139c. This portion of the Barbershop like the previous portion was fairly easy to navigate. Would definitely be a little harder if the water was higher. It does require a lot of stream crossings and in places going around dead fall. There was one spot that required crossing a log jam in the creek. Even though it’s a little bit of extra work it is worth it to see this portion of the canyon.

The sandstone rocks in all these canyons are Coconino sandstone of the Paleozoic era about 260 Mya and are an eolian deposit, remnants of sand dunes. You can see the cross hatched pattern typical of windblown deposits. Occasionally these deposits are swept away flat by some ancient event only to have more windblown deposits laid down and this is repeated over and over again. I wondered what that event was and how much time passed between events. Barbershop and Dane Canyons had some excellent examples of this along some of the canyon walls.
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average hiking speed 2.34 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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