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Aylor's Arch - 35 members in 85 triplogs have rated this an average 4.1 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Mar 17 2021
LindaAnn
avatar

 Guides 65
 Routes 407
 Photos 4,548
 Triplogs 1,375

41 female
 Joined Dec 24 2007
 Ahwatukee, AZ
Black Top MesaPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 17 2021
LindaAnn
Hiking13.77 Miles 2,792 AEG
Hiking13.77 Miles   7 Hrs   7 Mns   1.98 mph
2,792 ft AEG      10 Mns Break
 
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
Got started around 0830 and headed out on Second Water trail since I couldn’t face Dutchman trail both ways—it’s just too boring for me. South on Black Mesa Trail, which has always been rocky, but seemed even more so today. Once at Dutchman, we headed up Bull Pass, then up to Black Top Mesa. Quick break, then back down. Once back on Dutchman, we headed over to Aylors Arch. The wash was marked with pink flags, then easy to follow cairns from the wash up to the top of Palomino Mtn. Made our way over to view the arch, then headed back down, stopping at the mines along the way. Helpful to have a pole considering how steep it is, but recent rain softened the ground a little too, which helped with traction. Finished up the last four or so miles on Dutchman, ugh, but at least it went by quickly. Dropped my phone, shattering the glass screen protector, but no damage to the actual phone. Managed to get glass stuck in my finger though; took a few minutes to dig that out. Warm by the time we finished, and hardly any breeze today. Overall, not a huge amount of fire damage along this route. Saw three cardinals, but not much else.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
Some Indian paintbrush along Dutchman and on Palomino. Not much else.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Little Boulder Canyon Creek Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
Some pools of filterable water
_____________________
Feb 20 2021
John10s
avatar

 Routes 22
 Photos 1,347
 Triplogs 76

37 male
 Joined Mar 01 2018
 Chandler, AZ
Aylors Arch Black Top Mesa, AZ 
Aylors Arch Black Top Mesa, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 20 2021
John10s
Hiking14.50 Miles 2,866 AEG
Hiking14.50 Miles   9 Hrs   12 Mns   2.16 mph
2,866 ft AEG   2 Hrs   29 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners partners
TboneKathy
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
I'd seen Aylor's Arch from a distance but hadn't hiked around to the west side of Palomino Mountain for a close-up view, and we decided to add Black Top Mesa to the hike to tack on a few extra miles. We started from First Water Trailhead, and the parking lot was mostly full just after sunrise, which wasn't surprising on a nice day. I hadn't been out that way since last May, and the effects of last summer's wildfires were very visible along the first mile along Second Water and Lost Dutchman. I'd forgotten that that area was affected by the fires, so it was sad to see the scorched earth.

After turning onto Lost Dutchman, we had the trail mostly to ourselves for the next few miles until we approached the Bull Pass/Boulder Canyon intersection, when four or five groups all seemed to converge at the same time. We left the trail near there and started up Little Boulder Canyon, and there were some pools and even a trickle of moving water in the creek bed. The geology in the canyon very unique, and we passed one of the old partial mine shafts just before leaving the creek bed to start up the ravine toward Aylor's. It was a fairly steep climb, but the trail was well-worn up to the top of Palomino. There were great views in just about every direction, with Weaver's Needle, Four Peaks, Malapais, and many of the other peaks in view.

On our way down, six hikers were making their way up the ravine toward the arch...more crowds on one of the more off-the-beaten-path routes, which is becoming the norm in the Superstitions. We made our way back to the official trail and connected with Bull Pass for the steep climb up to Black Top Mesa. Early in the ascent, we could see Aylor's Arch from the opposite side of the mountain. The views on the way up and on the top of Black Top are always great, with Battleship, Yellow Peak, Geronimo Head, and other peaks on the horizon. I spent some time looking for the Spanish hieroglyphs on the south side of the mesa but, like last time, failed to find them. I climbed down farther over the rim of the mesa among the black rocks than I did last time, but still nothing. I've seen pictures of those and of a register on top, but I must be looking in the wrong places :).

The wind really picked up while we were on top, and a group of four hiked up while we were there, so we didn't spend too long on top. On the way back toward First Water, I decided to take a quick detour to check out the cave on the south side of the ridge along Lost Dutchman--the official guide for Aylor's Arch refers to it as "Dead Woman's Cave," but I haven't seen it referred to by that name anywhere else. I left my backpack behind and took only handheld hedge clippers with me, which proved to be a good decision--there was a wall of thorns between the trail and the slope leading up to the cave. Once I got through that, the climb up was steep, but nothing too difficult obstacle-wise.

What was in the cave? Not much of interest...there was a small tunnel in the back that looked like the start of an old mine shaft, but that was about it. I climbed up a little higher to the left of the cave to explore an area with what appeared to be mine tailings before I headed back down. Nice views from up there, but nothing out of the ordinary. I picked up a lot of cuts and scratches getting through the brush to get up there, but it was worth it to satisfy my curiosity. [ youtube video ] .
Culture
Culture
Graffiti
Jan 30 2021
azlaurie
avatar

 Photos 831
 Triplogs 242

47 female
 Joined Mar 09 2010
 Chandler, AZ
Aylor's ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 30 2021
azlaurie
Hiking10.59 Miles 1,646 AEG
Hiking10.59 Miles   6 Hrs   10 Mns   1.97 mph
1,646 ft AEG      48 Mns Break8 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
dswitzer3
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
Fun day! Saw no one until near the TH. 4 miles of pretty flat hike, some beautiful rock formations. Then hit the creek for some fun boulder hopping. (Don and my jam) Then... Straight up for about 3/4 mile, pretty sketchy, loose rock, I slipped and sharp boulder jacked up my back shoulder. Got to the top, and had to figure out how to get to view the Arch. Not to hard. Very worth it! Again all alone in the middle of no where with my soul mate. Can life get any better?
_____________________
♥ Timing is Everything ♥
Jan 03 2021
DixieFlyer
avatar

 Guides 60
 Routes 574
 Photos 8,093
 Triplogs 518

male
 Joined Jan 07 2017
 Fountain Hills,
Aylors Arch and Black Top Mesa, AZ 
Aylors Arch and Black Top Mesa, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 03 2021
DixieFlyer
Hiking14.00 Miles 2,810 AEG
Hiking14.00 Miles   6 Hrs   25 Mns   2.79 mph
2,810 ft AEG   1 Hour   24 Mns Break
 
I enjoy this hike so I decided to head to the Supes today.

From the First Water TH, we took the Dutchman Trail to Little Boulder Canyon, and then followed the wash for about 1/2 mile; then we followed a use trail up to Aylors Arch and Palomino Mountain. It is always nice being up on top of the arch -- well not right on top of it, but right next to it.

Then we went back the way we came to the Dutchman Trail and took it to the Bull Pass Trail, which we followed to a spur trail that went up to the top of Black Top Mesa. We hung out there for a while and then took the Bull Pass Trail back to the Dutchman Trail, which took us back to the TH.

We hardly saw anyone in the morning, but in the afternoon there were a few people on the Dutchman Trail, but it wasn't too crowded.

It was a great day to be out in the Superstitions!
Geology
Geology
Natural Arch
Culture
Culture
Summit Register Log

dry Little Boulder Canyon Creek Dry Dry
The creek was as dry as a bone.
_____________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. -- Edward Abbey
Mar 23 2020
fdv75
avatar

 Routes 13
 Photos 388
 Triplogs 112

64 male
 Joined Feb 10 2008
 Kent,wa
Aylor's ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 23 2020
fdv75
Hiking10.64 Miles 1,688 AEG
Hiking10.64 Miles   5 Hrs   55 Mns   2.01 mph
1,688 ft AEG      37 Mns Break
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
Palomino Mt.
_____________________
Mar 14 2020
fdv75
avatar

 Routes 13
 Photos 388
 Triplogs 112

64 male
 Joined Feb 10 2008
 Kent,wa
Aylor's ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 14 2020
fdv75
Hiking11.50 Miles 1,946 AEG
Hiking11.50 Miles   5 Hrs   31 Mns   2.28 mph
1,946 ft AEG      28 Mns Break
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
Aylor's Arch. Saw a rattlesnake too.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
Hedgehog Cactus
_____________________
Feb 07 2020
toddak
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 Guides 8
 Routes 7
 Photos 1,244
 Triplogs 474

56 male
 Joined Nov 15 2005
 Puhoynix, AZ
Aylor's ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 07 2020
toddak
Hiking21.00 Miles 4,000 AEG
Hiking21.00 Miles   10 Hrs   30 Mns   2.00 mph
4,000 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Counter-clockwise loop from First Water to bag Palomino, Black Top and the always incredible Battleship.
_____________________
Jan 04 2020
DixieFlyer
avatar

 Guides 60
 Routes 574
 Photos 8,093
 Triplogs 518

male
 Joined Jan 07 2017
 Fountain Hills,
Aylor's Arch and Black Top Mesa, AZ 
Aylor's Arch and Black Top Mesa, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 04 2020
DixieFlyer
Hiking13.70 Miles 2,920 AEG
Hiking13.70 Miles   6 Hrs   47 Mns   2.58 mph
2,920 ft AEG   1 Hour   28 Mns Break
 
For the third year in a row I went to the First Water TH in early January and did an out-and-back hike to Aylor's Arch and Black Top Mesa. We took the Dutchman Trail about 4.5 miles to Little Boulder Canyon, and then went up the wash in the canyon about a half mile or so to a use trail that went up to Palomino Mountain and Aylor's Arch. I did not stand directly on top of the arch, but I got next to the top. It is fun going along the bridge up to the top of the arch, although if you have a fear of heights you might not want to do all the way to the arch. The views up there are worth it though. After going back to the Dutchman Trail we went to Bull Pass and then up to Black Top Mesa. There are some really nice views of the Supes on the mesa.

It was a lot of fun going up Little Boulder Canyon today -- there was enough water in the wash to make hiking fun, but not so much water that you couldn't keep your feet mostly dry.
Geology
Geology
Natural Arch
Culture
Culture
Risky

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Little Boulder Canyon Creek Light flow Light flow
There was a good bit of water in the creek, including a few pools; but with care you can mostly keep your feet dry.
_____________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. -- Edward Abbey
1 archive
Dec 29 2019
Pickles
avatar

 Routes 7
 Photos 1,242
 Triplogs 61

54 female
 Joined Nov 21 2015
 Phoenix
Aylor's ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 29 2019
Pickles
Hiking11.10 Miles 2,340 AEG
Hiking11.10 Miles
2,340 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I was pleasantly surprised by the beauty up on Palomino Mountain! Te-wa and I had our fair share of creek crossings and muddy terrain. It was nice to see a pretty well defined route leading the way up to the arch. It sure reminded me of Battleship at the top!
_____________________
Nov 23 2019
emilystardust
avatar

 Routes 2
 Triplogs 402

39 female
 Joined Jun 23 2015
 Phoenix, AZ
Aylor's ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 23 2019
emilystardust
Hiking10.30 Miles 1,790 AEG
Hiking10.30 Miles
1,790 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
We didn't quite turn off the trail at the right place, so there was some extra bushwhacking and route-finding. But we found the arch and a much easier way back down.
_____________________
Jan 19 2019
Walworthjordyn
avatar

 Routes 3
 Photos 153
 Triplogs 16

27 female
 Joined Nov 26 2018
 Phoenix, AZ
Aylor's Arch - Black Top Summit, AZ 
Aylor's Arch - Black Top Summit, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 19 2019
Walworthjordyn
Hiking14.00 Miles 1,790 AEG
Hiking14.00 Miles
1,790 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Added Aylors Arch and Black Mesa Top Summit to be close to 14 miles. What an amazing day. Seeing water flowing in Boulder Canyon. We went up Aylors first, what a cool spot. Could not find any mailbox though. The route is not that difficult to follow. Went back to Dutchmans trail and headed on the connector Bull Pass trail up to the off trail to Black Mesa Top Summit. One of the better day hikes I have completed!
Jan 05 2019
DixieFlyer
avatar

 Guides 60
 Routes 574
 Photos 8,093
 Triplogs 518

male
 Joined Jan 07 2017
 Fountain Hills,
Aylor's Arch and Black Top Mesa, AZ 
Aylor's Arch and Black Top Mesa, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 05 2019
DixieFlyer
Hiking13.80 Miles 2,770 AEG
Hiking13.80 Miles   6 Hrs   17 Mns   2.82 mph
2,770 ft AEG   1 Hour   23 Mns Break
 
This is a fun hike and is one of my favorites in the Superstitions.

A group of us went on the hike, which started and ended at the First Water TH. We went on the Dutchman Trail for a little over 4 miles, and then went south through Little Boulder Canyon for about 1/2 mile until we got below Palomino Mountain and Aylor's Arch. From there we took a pretty good use trail up to Aylor's Arch. Most of us went up to the top of Arch, which had some awesome views. If you have a fear of heights you may not want to go up on the walkway that takes you over to the top of the Arch, but the chance of falling was near zero.

After spending some time on the Arch, we retraced our route back to the Dutchman Trail, and took it over to Bull Pass and then took a use trail up to the top of Black Top Mesa. I enjoy the views on top of the Mesa, so we hung out there for a bit. The last time that I was up there I found a geocache container, but could not locate it this time.

There was still some snow on the north side of the Ridgeline.

_____________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. -- Edward Abbey
Dec 08 2018
John9L
avatar

 Guides 6
 Routes 174
 Photos 5,294
 Triplogs 1,639

male
 Joined Mar 12 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
Aylor's ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 08 2018
John9L
Hiking17.20 Miles 4,000 AEG
Hiking17.20 Miles
4,000 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Headed into the Supes with Jaclyn & Dave for a fun day hike to Aylor’s Arch. We met off Signal Butte Rd around 5:15am (very early for me!) & arrived to a very dark & quiet Peralta Trail & were on trail at 6am. We cruised up with the help of our headlamps and admired the sky as the sun rose. It was a beautiful morning & the sky was stunning. We topped out on Fremont Saddle and made the detour over to the Lone Pine Tree for a few pics. Weavers Needle was illuminated in the early morning light and was stunning.

From the Lone Pine Tree, we returned to Fremont and continued north on Peralta Trail. We made quick time up Peralta and reached the junction with the Dutchman Trail. From there we continued north and wrapped around to the west and started the route to Aylor’s Arch. This will be my first trip to Aylor’s and I’m glad we went. There is a defined trail leading up. It’s steep & loose but straightforward with careful footing. Once up top we navigated to the north to the viewpoint below the arch. It’s really impressive up close. I hung out while Jaclyn & Dave climbed up to the arch. They looked so tiny as they stood next to it.

After Aylor’s we dropped back down and headed back on the Dutchman Trail and connected onto the Terrapin Trail. We made good time and took a variety of short breaks when needed. We eventually connected onto the Bluff Spring Trail and cruised back to the trailhead and were done by mid-afternoon. This was a nice hike and fun group. Thanks Jaclyn for coordinating.
_____________________
Nov 24 2018
mt98dew
avatar

 Guides 24
 Routes 19
 Photos 416
 Triplogs 1,785

52 male
 Joined Oct 24 2010
 Phoenix,Az
Aylor's ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 24 2018
mt98dew
Hiking11.20 Miles 1,790 AEG
Hiking11.20 Miles   3 Hrs   42 Mns   3.03 mph
1,790 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Reading some trip logs before I do my own and it looks like the Supes. was the place to be this Thanksgiving weekend. Got to the First Water TH just after 6am. It was still dark, but a near full moon made a headlamp unnecessary. Jogged in on the Dutchman, though it was slow going due to TH semi darkness a rocky nature of the trail. I uploaded the route for this hike. I didn't need it for the Dutchman, but I did do a little zigzagging trying to find the correct turn off for the "off trail" ascent. I got to say that those picture that Fritzski added really make a diffence in helping to confirm one's path. Trying to guide one's steps by referring to a downloaded route can be very tedious and time consuming. Once I saw the "narrow opening" as pictured I knew I was I on the right path and was soon able to pick up a faint trail that I was able to follow thereafter. The climb was pretty much as described: up and a bit brushy, but not too bad on the later. I was surprised at the amount of exposure when I reached the top. I didn't get that impression from the side I was ascending on. Also, I was surprised at how craggy the top was. All very climbable, if you are ok with the exposure that come with it. As I am not a heights person I did a modicum of scrambling. I would have loved to do more if the drops weren't so precipitous . I got a couple of pictures of the arch and walked a little ways along the spine to the arch, but the east side dropped off pretty quickly so I didn't get very far. The spine is pretty wide (3-5ft) so I imagine that height tolerant people can get pretty close to the arch. Made my down easier than I anticipated. Without realizing it, I ended up following a different thread down. When I reached the Dutchman I jogged back to the TH. Didn't see anyone going out. But on the way back met 26 hikers on the Dutchman. Parking lot was near capacity when I got back. Great hike. Wish I had a little more comfort with heights so I could have more fun when I get to the top.
_____________________
1 archive
Oct 20 2018
hikerdw
avatar

 Routes 165
 Photos 2,829
 Triplogs 487

62 male
 Joined Aug 16 2009
 Mesa,AZ
Aylor's ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 20 2018
hikerdw
Hiking10.30 Miles 1,790 AEG
Hiking10.30 Miles   5 Hrs   20 Mns   2.34 mph
1,790 ft AEG      56 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
First time hiking up Palomino Mountain to check out the arch up close. Really enjoyed the climb up, the views on top, and the time spent exploring. Nice flow of water in West Boulder Creek. Crossed paths with a Tarantula in Little Boulder Canyon. It got a little warm during the last half hour but with the breeze the temps overall were very nice.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Little Boulder Canyon Creek Pools to trickle Pools to trickle

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max West Boulder - Dutchman Crossing Medium flow Medium flow
Nice flow after the recent rains.
_____________________
1 archive
Feb 03 2018
DixieFlyer
avatar

 Guides 60
 Routes 574
 Photos 8,093
 Triplogs 518

male
 Joined Jan 07 2017
 Fountain Hills,
Aylor's ArchPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 03 2018
DixieFlyer
Hiking13.70 Miles 2,760 AEG
Hiking13.70 Miles   6 Hrs   25 Mns   2.82 mph
2,760 ft AEG   1 Hour   33 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Including myself, there were 7 intrepid hikers from a meetup group that began hiking at the First Water TH, and we did an out-and-back hike to Aylor's Arch and Black Top Mesa. We went out on the Dutchman Trail #104, and after about 5 miles or so, just past the turnoff to the Boulder Canyon trail, the trail went through a wash. Instead of continuing on the Dutchman Trail, we took a right in the wash and hiked through the wash for a half mile or so, until Aylor's Arch came into view off to the left. Then we followed a social trail up to a saddle just to the right of Aylor's Arch. Then we went to just below Aylor's Arch, and said what the heck, let's go up on Aylor's Arch. It was cool being up there, and the views were awesome. However, if you have a fear of heights, you may not want to to up to the top of the Arch.

We then reversed our course until we got back to the wash. Then when we got to the Dutchman Trail, we took a right from out of the wash. We didn't go too far, until we took the Bull Pass trail to the left. We then began ascending, and when we got to the base of Black Top Mesa, we took a trail to the right up to the top of Black Top Mesa. There were some cool views on top of the mesa -- Weaver's Needle was right in front of us, and I was able to recognize Superstition Peak 5057, Black Mountain, Peter's Mesa, among other landmarks. While on the mesa, not too far from the Sunburst Petroglyph, we came across a geocache container, which was the first one of those that I had found.

Once we descended from Black Top Mesa, we took the Bullpass trail back to the Dutchman Trail, and from there went back to the trailhead. It was a warm afternoon, and one of the hikers commented that the 5 miles or so that we went back on the Dutchman trail seemed like a 100 mile death march. While that may have smacked of hyperbole, I certainly did not argue with her!
Named place
Named place
Aylor's Arch
_____________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. -- Edward Abbey
Jan 11 2018
DixieFlyer
avatar

 Guides 60
 Routes 574
 Photos 8,093
 Triplogs 518

male
 Joined Jan 07 2017
 Fountain Hills,
Aylor's Arch and Black Top Mesa, AZ 
Aylor's Arch and Black Top Mesa, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 11 2018
DixieFlyer
Hiking16.20 Miles 3,330 AEG
Hiking16.20 Miles   8 Hrs   14 Mns   2.53 mph
3,330 ft AEG   1 Hour   50 Mns Break
 
This 16 mile, 3300' AEG hike has some diverse hiking trails that offer a bit of everything: some relatively flat trails that you can get a good workout hike on; off trail scrambling; boulder hopping; rock climbing; steep ascents/descents; and lots of nice views throughout.

Tracie, my intrepid hiking partner, and I started this hike from the First Water TH at the end of First Water Road. We proceeded along the Dutchman Trail #104, stopping to take side trips to Aylor's Arch and Black Top Mesa. Once we got back down Black Top Mesa, we proceeded to take a "Loop to Nowhere" that went on the Lost Black Top Mesa trail and the Bull Pass trail. After completing the loop, we retraced our steps back to the TH.

The hike up Aylor's Arch was cool, and views from atop Black Top Mesa were really nice -- there is a great view of Weaver's Needle from there. Whle on the Mesa, we came across the "sunburst" petroglyph on the SE corner of the mesa.

I'll probably do this hike again, but I think that I will pass on the "Loop to Nowhere" next time. It adds some distance and AEG to the hike, but unless it was wildflower blooming season, the loop doesn't really do much for me.
Named place
Named place
Aylor's Arch
_____________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. -- Edward Abbey
1 archive
Dec 16 2017
joebartels
avatar

 Guides 245
 Routes 837
 Photos 12,313
 Triplogs 4,966

51 male
 Joined Nov 20 1996
 Phoenix, AZ
Aylor Arch - Black Top and Black Mesa, AZ 
Aylor Arch - Black Top and Black Mesa, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Dec 16 2017
joebartels
Hiking15.65 Miles 3,486 AEG
Hiking15.65 Miles   9 Hrs   2 Mns   1.97 mph
3,486 ft AEG   1 Hour   6 Mns Break8 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Not 1 hiker witnessed on trail the entire hike on the 3rd Sat of Dec... perfect weather in a world class wilderness.

Oldies but goodies. Still love the views atop Palomino. Slow coming down the loose trail down. With my balance a few notches below drunken sailor, Ray helped every step back down. Thx! This helped me get in tune for Denny's year end Safety First Hike.

BTM is always a great destination day or night. Ray played the role of Sir Wally and filled us in on the story of The End rock art.

Bruce had a little loop with Lost BTM Trail and Bull Pass that I could do without. Yet made up for it with a little off trail coming down Black Mesa which I noticed Tibber tackled once! Definitely worth a gander.

Another fab hike in one of my favorite areas.
_____________________
- joe
Dec 16 2017
rayhuston
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 83
 Photos 3,971
 Triplogs 683

64 male
 Joined Mar 09 2012
 Gilbert, AZ
Aylor Arch - Black Top and Black Mesa, AZ 
Aylor Arch - Black Top and Black Mesa, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Dec 16 2017
rayhuston
Hiking15.65 Miles 3,498 AEG
Hiking15.65 Miles   9 Hrs   2 Mns   1.97 mph
3,498 ft AEG   1 Hour   6 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Any one of the longer hikes would have been good, but why do one when you can do three or four while you're in the area. Classic Bruce.

I haven't been to BTM or Aylor's Arch for some time. The trails for both were easier to follow than I remember. The top of Palomino Mtn is a beautiful area. My first trip up there must have been in the spring because I remember a lot of green grass near the top, almost like a park setting. The cliff on the east side overlooking the Dutchman trail makes your stomach drop.

Black Top Mesa has some of the best views in the area. Overcast skies dampened the views just a bit, but still awesome. We hit the main attractions. I hadn't seen the rock with "The End" etched in it, I think from the movie crew that filmed "Lust for Gold." I mentioned that as we approached the south end. Right on queue, Bruce popped up, "You mean that one?" How could I have missed it? We didn't stay long; brisk winds sent us back down the trail a bit where we found a spot out of the wind. Time for lunch.

Lost Black Top Mesa trail was new. It was a decent trail for something that I didn't know existed. It terminates at the Dutchman trail, which we used to loop back to the Bull Pass trail.

We finished the hike on the Black Mesa and Second Water trails with an off trail down a canyon connecting Black Mesa and Second Water trails. The shortcut probably took longer than if we had stayed on trails, but it had a couple of cool spots worth seeing.

This was a great hike with a nice breeze and cool temps under mostly cloudy skies. The sun finally appeared as we were finishing up on Second water. We didn't see a single person on the trails today. There were a few people in sleeping bags when we arrived and two guys getting ready to start a hike when we finished. Holiday shopping must be going very well this year.

Back to back outings with Bruce and Joe is making this a great holiday season for me. Thanks again for a fun day! I suppose I need to get out and do some shopping too.
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Dec 16 2017
The_Eagle
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 Guides 9
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65 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Aylor Arch - Black Top and Black Mesa, AZ 
Aylor Arch - Black Top and Black Mesa, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Dec 16 2017
The_Eagle
Hiking16.03 Miles 3,555 AEG
Hiking16.03 Miles   9 Hrs   1 Min   1.98 mph
3,555 ft AEG      55 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
We arrived to the Trailhead in the predawn darkness with our headlights hitting 5 or so people in sleeping bags laid out right in the parking lot. Now that's campin'! There were also 2 hunters getting ready to go out.

We hit the trails in the upper 30's and never saw another sole all day. I was beginning to think they'd closed the wilderness and we did not get the memo.

On the Dutchman #104, over Sting Ray Pass, Parker Pass, and then Scorpion Pincher Rock for a photo Op.

The climb up to Palomino Mountain was more well defined than I remembered. Once up top I dropped down to the area of Aylors Arch to check it out. The area up top here is interesting to check out, and the views don't suck at all.

Black Top Mesa was up next up. We took the mandatory spin to the south end to look for the Sun, Gold and The End. Successful on all 3, plus a compass.

Ray had never seen and Joe wouldn't stop talking about it, so we had to sample the Lost Black Top Mesa Trail.

Now on our way back and taking the Black Mesa Trail #241. We took a short/long cut to the Second Water Trail #236. Joe pointed out that @tibber had done this canyon. I'm impressed, as there was one steep drop (with water) that was a little slippery/loose.

The Second Water Trail #236 is a super highway all the way back.

Musta been the perfect weather that scared everyone away from the trails...on a Saturday..

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There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
average hiking speed 2.28 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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