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Goldfield Ovens Loop - 23 members in 66 triplogs have rated this an average 3.2 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Dec 11 2018
CannondaleKid
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 Guides 43
 Routes 137
 Photos 20,568
 Triplogs 1,927

69 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
Goldfield Ovens U-Loop, AZ 
Goldfield Ovens U-Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Dec 11 2018
CannondaleKid
Hiking8.70 Miles 1,486 AEG
Hiking8.70 Miles   3 Hrs   58 Mns   2.29 mph
1,486 ft AEG      10 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
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trixiec
Neither of us felt like slogging through miles of sandy washes but we were eager to explore new ground so we eschewed the official route and added a U to the center of the loop. While probably 70% of it was completely 'off-trail', the hike itself was nothing spectacular... no encounters with wildlife or humans so we had the day to ourselves.
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CannondaleKid
1 archive
Dec 01 2018
kenandjude
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 Photos 637
 Triplogs 94

43 male
 Joined Jan 30 2007
 Gilbert, AZ
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 01 2018
kenandjude
Hiking7.75 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking7.75 Miles   4 Hrs      1.94 mph
775 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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No better way than to spend a day hiking with my son. Weather was great and even came across the horses.
Fauna
Fauna
Wild horse
_____________________
-Ken

Aizona is God's country
2 archives
Oct 26 2018
CannondaleKid
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 Guides 43
 Routes 137
 Photos 20,568
 Triplogs 1,927

69 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
Blue Point Salt River Loop, AZ 
Blue Point Salt River Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Oct 26 2018
CannondaleKid
Hiking3.10 Miles 541 AEG
Hiking3.10 Miles   1 Hour   25 Mns   2.19 mph
541 ft AEG10 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
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Started at Blue Point Rec Site following the Salt River below the Blue Point bluffs...
Up the wash a quarter-mile...
Ascend the lower eastern slope of Peak 1871 (incorrectly labeled 1971) until reaching the horse trail...
Descended along the trail southwest back to the Salt River...
Followed along the river until locating a shallow water crossing...
Crossed the Salt River without the water over-topping my ankle-height waterproof boots...
Sought the wild horses grazing in a grassy meadow which I saw earlier from Peak 1871...
Located the horses...
Wandered through the group of five horses, three of which were pretty young...
Filmed the horses...
VIDEO: Wild Horses grazing in the meadow
Headed over to Bush Highway...
Saw a Great Egret in the river while crossing on the bridge...
Took photo of same...
Back to the car...
Nice loop which I was only able to accomplish because the water level had been lowered.
Named place
Named place
Blue Point
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CannondaleKid
2 archives
Mar 20 2017
gummo
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 Guides 7
 Photos 10,533
 Triplogs 175

male
 Joined Oct 23 2010
 mesa
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 20 2017
gummo
Hiking7.75 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking7.75 Miles
775 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I returned to Goldfield Oven Loop for a 2nd round this year because on the first round, I only saw one snake and minimal wildlife. I was not satisfied with seeing one snake on this hike (and neither should you), so I opted to do a little more stomping around in the sand to find more snakes and wildlife.

I did better this round, seeing 5 snakes and my first coachwhip of 2017, who was playing dead when I spotted him but gave me a courtesy bite to let me know that he was still alive.

I ran into a group from Chicago who said they were looking for horses on this hike and saw a bald eagle. They were told that there were no diamondbacks on this hike, probably from one of you all. Shame on you! :x I didn't see any horses on the hike but saw them along the road on the way out.

Unofficial snake count 2017:
- Rosy boas: 11
- Dbacks: 8
- Red Dbacks: 6
- Ringneck: 1
- Blackheads: 7
- Night snakes: 3
- Coachwhips: 1
- Sidewinders: 4
- Spotted Leafnosed: 1
Grand total: 42
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1 archive
Jan 27 2017
trailzrus
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 Routes 69
 Photos 3,130
 Triplogs 885

66 male
 Joined Jul 24 2009
 Mesa, AZ
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 27 2017
trailzrus
Hiking7.82 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking7.82 Miles
775 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
Jan 17 2017
CannondaleKid
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 Guides 43
 Routes 137
 Photos 20,568
 Triplogs 1,927

69 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
Two Lime Kilns Loop, AZ 
Two Lime Kilns Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 17 2017
CannondaleKid
Hiking4.90 Miles 1,070 AEG
Hiking4.90 Miles   2 Hrs   37 Mns   1.87 mph
1,070 ft AEG5 LBS Pack
 
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trixiec
A shorter, quicker loop, this time with Tracey in tow.

Lots of deer and bighorn scat, but neither were to be found today.
:(
Tracey spotted another desert tortoise in similar shape as the one I encountered barely a few hundred feet away last trip. Looked like it may have been unable to get back on its feet. We turned it over, but alas it was too late to save it.
:pout:
Fauna
Fauna
Desert Tortoise
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CannondaleKid
Jan 12 2017
CannondaleKid
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 Guides 43
 Routes 137
 Photos 20,568
 Triplogs 1,927

69 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
Two Lime Kilns Loop, AZ 
Two Lime Kilns Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 12 2017
CannondaleKid
Hiking8.10 Miles 1,745 AEG
Hiking8.10 Miles   4 Hrs   17 Mns   1.91 mph
1,745 ft AEG      3 Mns Break20 LBS Pack
 
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After Crossing the Salt two days ago I couldn't wait to get back to explore more of the other side of the Salt.
Only this time, instead of crossing the Salt River I planned on an approach from Beeline Highway.

Big mistake... of the two tentative starting points, neither provided access to the Tonto Forest Public Lands
](*,)
Not only the extra drive time was lost but the hour-plus I spent mapping out possible tracks with Route Manager as well.
:doh:
While driving back along Bush Highway I was mulling over the options...
The first option would add a 6 mile round-trip just to GET to the area of interest
The second would add just under 4 miles but being more difficult it would take about the same amount of time.
:-k
That left either another 'wet-foot' crossing or starting from Blue Point Recreation Site. Hmmm... so where's my Senior All-Access Pass? I KNOW it's in here somewhere! And of course, I found it in the last place I looked, under the dash mat.
:y:
(Of course it's always the LAST place you look... you stop looking once it's found.)

Ok, so how am I going to adjust for starting 4 miles from my planned point? I'd rather not slog too far in the wash (a la Goldfield Ovens Loop) so I'm hoping for an early ascent up the steep cliff-like slope. Luckily I hadn't even started up the wash before spotting tracks starting up a steep & narrow drainage. It wasn't easy but it was well worth the effort, cutting off at least 90 minutes to reach the nearest planned exploration area.
:sweat:
I wasn't far up the slope before I turned west and soon connected with the horse trail I had followed in the other direction two days ago. Now in somewhat familiar ground I could make up some time, taking as direct a route as possible to the closest item of interest, a lime kiln. It turns out I was within a few hundred feet of it two days ago but had no idea it was there.
:doh:
Only today I WAS aware of it, but just because of a mistake while using Route Manager. When switching between Satellite & FS Topo I clicked 'CT 1900' by mistake, and what's this? A lime kiln? Wow! Switching back to Satellite view and zooming in, there it is!
:y:
Ok, I found it, took photos and it's time to move on. But where? With plans already jumbled I simply went wherever something caught my interest, which meant it wasn't a smooth track in any direction. After encountering the same seemingly lost-and-alone wild horse as at the start, I figured it was time to start working my way back.

Wild Horse side-bar:
The young horse was originally on the opposite side of the river from Blue Point, wandering back and forth along the shoreline, whinnying constantly, as though hoping to locate the rest of the herd. So now, hours later and a few miles on the other side of the Salt River, I hear the same whinnying, and sure enough, it's the same horse! When I took its photo I asked are you following me? it replied with a loud whinny while hastily cantering off.
:--:
Now, with no horse-on-my-tail I'm ready to do some climbing up the very minor Peak 1719 (hill is more like it) to get a good overview of today's hike before heading back.

Video: Peak 1719 summit panorama

While taking it all in, I got to thinking about the return trip... particularly where I climbed from the river I realized will be a nasty descent. That's when I cast my eyes over to Peak 1817 (1917 on the map) and the long southwestern slope looked easy enough to go up & over, drop down to the horse trail on the other side and follow it down to the 'other' more well-known lime kiln on the Goldfield Ovens Loop. Done! Great idea!
:y:
It turned out to be an even better idea when I spotted what I thought was the back end of a White-tailed deer, taking a quick snap shot before it disappeared behind a Palo Verde. I hustled as quickly and quietly as I could to the point it had gone out of sight only to find nothing. Oh well, better luck next time.
:(
But after taking a few scenic photos and continued my ascent, there it was again! Only this time it wasn't a deer but a bighorn sheep. And then there were THREE bighorns!
:y:
The bighorns were climbing the same slope as I was... only they were a bit lighter-of-foot so it was at a pretty good zoom when I shot the video, so be wary of vertigo:

Video: Three Bighorn Sheep climbing Peak 1817

The rest of the hike went by without further drama... up and over 1817, down to the horse trail, down to the wash, visit the 'other' lime kiln, out the wash and back to Blue Point.

What could have been a disaster, again turned into a prefect day of hiking... :y:
Everything was good... weather, scenery, fauna and visiting a new-to-me lime kiln.
Culture
Culture
Coke Ovens
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CannondaleKid
Jan 02 2017
hikingaz2
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 Guides 1
 Routes 143
 Photos 1,422
 Triplogs 195

76 male
 Joined Dec 16 2011
 Mesa,Az
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 02 2017
hikingaz2
Hiking7.97 Miles 969 AEG
Hiking7.97 Miles   2 Hrs   52 Mns   2.88 mph
969 ft AEG      6 Mns Break4 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Headed out to the river and decided to do the Coke Ovens Loop, haven't done this hike since 2013, maybe see some Horses, but nope just myself and the great outdoors and time to think and relax :) Take way the deep sand and this is a great hike with great views.
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Aug 21 2016
gummo
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 Guides 7
 Photos 10,533
 Triplogs 175

male
 Joined Oct 23 2010
 mesa
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 21 2016
gummo
Hiking11.80 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking11.80 Miles   4 Hrs   51 Mns   2.43 mph
775 ft AEG6 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
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It rained where I was at the day before, so I assumed that it rained in the Goldfields. I was wrong, so when I hit the trail, I was trenching thru the washes ankle-deep in dry sand.

Nonetheless, I spotted 2 tortoises, a dback, and an owl. I wasn't too hot when I ended, so I went back out and found a baby gopher snake. By that time, it got too hot. There wasn't too many tubers on the river. There were a lot of fishermen. I've never hiked this trail in August. It wasn't much different when I hiked it in September.
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1 archive
Apr 08 2016
rtaylor3235
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 Routes 110
 Photos 668
 Triplogs 196

68 male
 Joined Nov 02 2013
 Apache Junction,
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 08 2016
rtaylor3235
Hiking7.75 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking7.75 Miles   2 Hrs   55 Mns   2.91 mph
775 ft AEG      15 Mns Break
 
no photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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This loop is 85% soft sand washes & 5% parking lot, can't recommend it to anyone I like. Most of the trail has no shade, no views and no chance of a breeze ](*,)
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Mar 27 2016
gummo
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 Guides 7
 Photos 10,533
 Triplogs 175

male
 Joined Oct 23 2010
 mesa
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 27 2016
gummo
Hiking7.90 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking7.90 Miles   3 Hrs   36 Mns   2.19 mph
775 ft AEG3 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Originally, I wanted to go to Joshua Tree NP but was not feeling well. I decided to go Goldfield Oven for a quick and, what I thought would be, quiet hike. I saw a few folks in the beginning and a few horse riders toward the end. I ran into MCSO looking for a man on the run. The helicopter was hovering over me for an hour, which scared a lot of the birds away. I thought I would feel better after the hike, but I actually felt worse.
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Jan 30 2016
hikerdw
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 Routes 131
 Photos 2,263
 Triplogs 358

60 male
 Joined Aug 16 2009
 Mesa,AZ
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 30 2016
hikerdw
Hiking9.31 Miles 1,056 AEG
Hiking9.31 Miles   4 Hrs   4 Mns   2.75 mph
1,056 ft AEG      41 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Ryan is having his house painted so something close was in order so that he could check in with the crew in the afternoon, so this loop fit the bill, close and something new. Plan A also included hiking Sunrise Arch if the river was cross-able, plan B was to hit Lone Mountain on the way home.

Nice easy loop hike although hiking through the loose sand in the wash was a bit tiring. Saw 4 deer off at a distance while checking out the oven. Added in the Stewart Mountain Dam loop to check out the petroglyphs which included hiking though the Saguaro Lake Ranch. I saw a young man cleaning the pool so just gave him a shout out letting him know we were just hiking through, and received a confirmation back that that was OK. Although the river was low, crossing it would have meant wading through water so we opted for plan B. The hike from the Water Users parking lot to Blue Point brought back memories of hiking the road with tubes in tow back in the day before they modernized the area. Added plus, other than at the ranch, and the parking areas, we saw absolutely no others on the trail.
Named place
Named place
Stewart Mountain Dam
_____________________
Nov 09 2015
gummo
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 Guides 7
 Photos 10,533
 Triplogs 175

male
 Joined Oct 23 2010
 mesa
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 09 2015
gummo
Hiking9.25 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking9.25 Miles
775 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Great day at the Goldfield Oven (Lovin') Loop. I started my hike at 10:41am. Prior to that I stopped at Granite Reef to photograph Red Mountain. A few birders were out at Granite Reef and some fishing folks as well along the river.

Originally, I was going to do Coon's Bluff, but Coon's Bluff was too crowded for me. Lots of birds were out along the river and in the desert. I was a bit surprised because birds tend to be more active in cooler weather. There were more people along the river than a usual Monday as well, but no one was on the trail.

I ran into a herd of horses along the river. A lot of them have white noses. As I was photographing the herd, I didn't see one large horse about 15ft behind me until I was finished.

The sand was awful to walk thru. It's a mixed blessing. The sand makes ambulation difficult, but at the same time, it keeps other bipedal mammals off the trail, so you get the trail to yourself. Also, Goldfield Oven Loop should be called Horse Poop Loop.

I got lost near the 6 mile mark and ended up on the road prematurely. While finding my way around, I stumbled upon a sweet lyre snake. :D If someone would have bet me that I would see a lyre snake today, I would have lost that bet. I don't see lyre snakes too often (I've only seen 6 before), and November is a tough month for me to find snakes, so I was stoked to find one, and this fella was nice, full-grown, and healthy.

I searched the river for more birds and found a few near Saguaro Ranch (I think that's what it's called). I also heard a bald eagle in the distance. A lot of lizards started to emerge and be active close to the end of my hike. I had no energy to photograph them, but I was satisfied with what I accomplished today.
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Sep 20 2015
adenium
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 Guides 2
 Routes 18
 Photos 97
 Triplogs 219

45 male
 Joined Jul 05 2008
 Gilbert, AZ
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 20 2015
adenium
Hiking8.70 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking8.70 Miles   3 Hrs   30 Mns   2.49 mph
775 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Took a little early morning stroll and found some geocaches out this way. A few detours bumped the distance on this guy up a bit. Got to say, sandy washes are sure expedient but miles and miles of walking in them wears me out! :)
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Sep 14 2015
gummo
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 Guides 7
 Photos 10,533
 Triplogs 175

male
 Joined Oct 23 2010
 mesa
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 14 2015
gummo
Hiking9.00 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking9.00 Miles   3 Hrs   42 Mns   2.61 mph
775 ft AEG      15 Mns Break
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Did a little exploring around the Oven Loop. Great hike as expected. I was hoping to see a coral snake and maybe a blacktailed, a tiger rattlesnake, or some bighorn sheep, but instead I saw 2 desert tortoises, a cooper's hawk (my first), and 2 snakes at the end of the hike. I also saw 2 deer, but they did not stick around for a photo.

The river and trail were void of people. The rain brought out the tortoises and tiny red-spotted toads that were too small and quick to photograph. The damp sand made ambulating a little more bearable. The parking lots nearly empty, but the trash left by river folks made some good flipping spots for snakes. Lots of tracks were seen in the washes, especially javelinas and deer. I still can't find the petroglyphs. I really should do this loop more often.
Culture
Culture
Geocache
_____________________
Apr 27 2015
gummo
avatar

 Guides 7
 Photos 10,533
 Triplogs 175

male
 Joined Oct 23 2010
 mesa
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 27 2015
gummo
Hiking7.75 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking7.75 Miles
775 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I decided to do Goldfield Oven Loop today because it rained recently and the wet sand made ambulating easier. The start to my trek started out rough. Midway toward the trail, I saw an accident and was going to photograph it, but discovered that I forgot my memory card, so I returned home to retrieve it. Therefore, I got to the trail late.

I hit the trail around 9am. I wanted to hit the trail around 8am to have time to photograph birds and then snakes. Unfortunately, I was pressed for time if I wanted to catch some snakes sunny themselves on the trail, so I rushed my bird shots and had no time for flowers.

I shot a few birds near the river that didn't take much time and effort and made my way thru the washes. I didn't see any snakes, but midway thru the hike, I spotted my first gila monster of the year. It took me a while to spot one, but I usually see one gila monster in the spring and then a few more in the summer.

Near the road, I spotted one bighorn, which I thought was a deer at first. It took off running, and like the Flash, I ran after it, grabbing it by the horns, and rode it back to my car.

Okay...not really... But after losing sight of it, I did go in the direction that I predicted it would go to head it off. Careful not to step on any branches, I sneaked up on it and later discovered 2 more in the herd. They scattered onto the mountain, which was fine with me, because after that, I was able to get some clear shot. I later spotted another bighorn higher up the mountain.

After that, I looked for snakes and spotted one, but it got away. It looked to be a patchnosed snake, but I wasn't sure. The saguaros aren't in full bloom yet. I'd give it another week or two. Goldfield Oven Loop is always a treat. I need to do this loop more often. There's always something new to see there.
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1 archive
Jan 25 2015
wrabbitdog
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 Routes 2
 Triplogs 2

47 male
 Joined Jan 15 2015
 Seward
Goldfield Ovens Loop with Salt River addition, AZ 
Goldfield Ovens Loop with Salt River addition, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 25 2015
wrabbitdog
Hiking9.11 Miles 995 AEG
Hiking9.11 Miles   6 Hrs   48 Mns   1.94 mph
995 ft AEG   2 Hrs   6 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 
no photosets
1st trip
Linked linked
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My wife and I took a long weekend vacation from Alaska (got a great deal on our flight). We left the kids at home and picked out a few hikes, this was one.
After spending 2 nights at El Dorado Hot Springs in Tonopah with a great dayhike (see Ben Avery Trail log/route) we headed back through Phoenix and found ourselves on the edge of the Tonto NF. We went polar opposite and got a great deal on a room at the last minute at the WeKoPa hotel outside Fountain Hills for two nights.
Before we left home, we had decided to do the Ben Avery Trail and this one. However, after reading some of the triplogs I was having serious second thoughts because we wanted to avoid developed areas and we had a less than ideal experience walking in the wash on our previous trip. We considered bailing and heading up to Payson or elsewhere up the highway, but in the end decided to stick with our first idea and do the Goldfield Ovens.
I had heard about the Tonto Pass, but didn't realize that you couldn't buy the pass anywhere near here. We noticed that there were a few cars parked on the highway near what looked like trailheads and where there was a conspicuous lack of 'no parking' signs. After a quick stop at the 'lodge' by the dam, we learned that the passes were only required to use the developed sites for parking (where there was asphalt - not something we were planning on). We again decided to risk our rental car and parked at one of these turnoffs about halfway between the picnic area and the dam - right next to a trail access. It turned out to be a good decision - we didn't have any problems and we didn't have to drive all the way back to town for a pass.

Once we left the car, we headed northeast on a series of informal trails until we found the main trail that took us to the picnic area. At this point, I was getting pretty disillusioned since we saw a ton of trash around - primarily beer bottles (mostly broken) It also looked like every cactus had bullet scars. We were starting to regret our decision to not head up the highway, when we encountered our first person. Just east of the picnic area, we came across a younger woman taking her housecat for a walk. Of course, the housecat was black, which my wife saw as another bad omen. This area is very brushy and it would not be possible to walk off-trail. We passed the edge of the parking lot and quickly found that the trail became sandwiched between the river and a steep slope. We followed a huge grey squirrel for a while, and watched some folks on the edge of the river, but they were far enough from the trail that I didn't even feel the need to nod or wave. Once we got 1/4 mile away from the parking area, we noticed a great decrease in trash and signs of use. We didn't see anyone else on foot until we got under the highway at the other end of the trip.

Once we left the road and the river, the temperature warmed up a bit and we found ourselves back in the wash in somewhat of a narrow canyon. We did what we could to stay on the edges or above the wash, but the triplogs from others are largely correct - the stuff is hard to walk in - even without a substantial pack. There is a point around here where the wash is choked off by large rocks on either side, and it almost feels like you are walking into a theme park entrance.

After exiting the canyon, we were easily able to stay out of the wash and go overland. The area is fairly heavily vegetated, but was easy to roam around on informal trails. My wife and I have both done some desert hiking, and we knew to beware of Cholla cactus - but we both 'got bit'. I only got it once, but she had unfortunate experiences twice on this trip...This area was neat because we could see the Fountain in Fountain hills, despite the fact it was so far away by road - we were still fairly close as the crow flies. There were a bunch of great rock formations to climb on and we took a few breaks.

Around here we found a cool white lavender-smelling bush. After wandering we found a few more - it was unexpected to find sweet smelling brush at this time in the year.

From there the trail climbed a bit to a high point before getting a good view of Saguaro lake and starting to head down hill. As the trail got closer to the road, it became more of a canyon and more of an interesting walk. This is also where the large sheer faces along the lake and river come into view and they looked awesome. Coming down through this area was truly spectacular.

At the bottom of the hill the trail goes under the highway in two enormous culverts - I can only imagine what this area looks like at flood stage! The road was a bit loud, but on the other side of the culvert, the trail takes a hard right turn on an old roadbed until it disappears into the area between the road and the river.

We had planned on taking a walk along the river after the hike, so once we were so close, decided to just follow the riverbank from where we were until we got lateral to our rental car. We stayed on a series of informal trails - frequently walking right at the water's edge. We ran into a few folks fishing, one kayaker, and some others walking, but this area was still very empty - especially for a Sunday evening. We had to come up from the river bank a few times at cut banks - but were able to stay far from the road the entire time. Only once did we have to walk along a parking lot - but for just 100 yards or so. We did find a few cool secluded beaches (that were only secluded likely because it was 4:45 in the afternoon and it was only in the high 50's - not swimming weather). We took off our shoes and soaked our feet in the cool water while we had our final snacks and watched the huge spires along the river change color in the evening sun. Once we got across from the place we parked our car, we headed in a bee line for the highway and walked right to the spot. Getting through the barbed wire fences wasn't too hard, although I certainly felt old crawling on the ground under it just before a 20-something duck hunter appeared out of the area by the river and hopped the fence in a single jump to a post. (he was a neat kid, friendly, and we had a nice chat)

The car was fine (no ticket) and we wound up staying there for 25 minutes or so watching the alpenglow as the sunset finished.

Since we had come to the area from the North, we decided to head back the opposite way and we drove through Mesa - getting to the Blue Adobe Grill around 6:30. Highly recommended - their Chorizo stuffed Chicken was sublime and went great with the carafe of margaritas we shared!

One funny anecdote - I thought it was strange another log mentioned the heavy police presence in this area. They weren't kidding. Once we got to the area around the dam we saw at least a dozen sherriff vehicles - most in the process of pulling people over. We drove pretty slow, and I wasn't concerned, but I would recommend everyone drive the speed limit around here.

Overall this hike was great. My wife and I think it got a bum rap from other triplogs. I especially liked the area along the river at the beginning of the hike and the part from the peak down to the road at the end. We had great weather - mid to high 70s and the trail was great. Again, I especially appreciated your app (which I used on the Ben Avery Trip, although this time I 'cached' the map before the trip so it was more useful). Because this area isn't a designated wilderness, I have no qualms about encouraging use. I was a bit disillusioned about the broken glass and beer bottles near the picnic area, but this is almost to be expected and something that can be cleaned up in a few volunteer excursions. The trail doesn't have much elevation gain, and it is nice to walk along the river - even in the winter.

Wildlife seen
Grey squirrel
Several lizards

No wild horses :(
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4 archives
Jan 19 2015
godber
avatar

 Triplogs 1

44 male
 Joined Mar 22 2014
 Tempe, AZ
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 19 2015
godber
Hiking7.75 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking7.75 Miles
775 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
We followed the Dec 2009 description by AZLOT69. This description was very good and resolved some uncertainties along the last stretch ... one can kind of lose the trail when hitting parking lots.

The wash at the beginning of the trip is very sandy and uphill, but quite isolated and nice. The view on the ridge was indeed spectacular. The trek parallel with the highway was kind of a drag. Also, there were several groups of horses along the trail who expressed surprise in seeing hikers.

Not bad, but I don't think I will do it again.
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Mar 04 2014
kingsnake
avatar

 Guides 83
 Routes 185
 Photos 8,007
 Triplogs 640

57 male
 Joined Dec 20 2010
 Sunnyslope, PHX
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 04 2014
kingsnake
Hiking10.78 Miles 1,266 AEG
Hiking10.78 Miles   3 Hrs   59 Mns   2.71 mph
1,266 ft AEG
 no routes
Partners none no partners
Did a figure 8 of the northern half of Goldfield Ovens, all of Stewart Mountain Dam Petroglyphs, then the southern half of the Goldfield Ovens loop (azdesertfather's alternate route). Picked up rockadoodledude about 0615, to avoid rush hour traffic, and it was a wise decision. On speed limit-obeying drive east on Bush Highway, pointed out presence of MCSO substation. On way back west, hiking along Bush Highway, saw MCSO traffic stop. Few minutes later heard a siren blip for another stop, and a few minutes after that, MCSO going lights and siren east on highway. Coyotes just off to our right started yipping. Unfortunately I did not get my iPhone out and videotaping quick enough to record the coyote chorus. On speed limit-obeying drive back along Bush HIghway, was passed by three more MCSO units, which caused me to point out to Mike that they have the ability to zap even while moving, even in the opposite direction. (I got nailed doing 80 in a 65 zone that way, near Dudleyville.) And *then* there was a Mesa PD car waiting *just* inside city limits as Bush Highway turns into Power Rd. Freaking gauntlet. You have been warned.

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Hike Video: http://youtu.be/0rnR1pbd_0Q
Named place
Named place
Four Peaks Stewart Mountain Dam
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
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http://prestonm.com : Everyone's enjoyment of the outdoors is different and should be equally honored.
1 archive
Jan 05 2014
HikerGirl_inAZ
avatar

 Photos 16
 Triplogs 94

female
 Joined Sep 06 2006
 Mesa, AZ
Goldfield Ovens LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 05 2014
HikerGirl_inAZ
Hiking9.20 Miles 775 AEG
Hiking9.20 Miles   5 Hrs      2.04 mph
775 ft AEG      30 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
No wild horses today. Took a wrong turn somewhere and added 1.4 mi to the hike.
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average hiking speed 2.34 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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