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Boneyback Peak - 4 members in 4 triplogs have rated this an average 4 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Apr 02 2019
Oregon_Hiker
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 Guides 9
 Routes 377
 Photos 6,680
 Triplogs 493

74 male
 Joined Dec 07 2010
 Phoenix, AZ
Boneyback PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 02 2019
Oregon_Hiker
Hiking4.70 Miles 1,609 AEG
Hiking4.70 Miles   7 Hrs      0.67 mph
1,609 ft AEG15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
Grasshopper
Another hike suggested by ssk44 and another winner. In this one we actually were able to do the entire hike to the destination, Boneyback Peak, but bypassed several hilltops to make it easier for two old codgers. The 13 mile drive on FR71 from Punkin Center on HW188 to the trailhead went quickly due to the dirt road being in great shape with only minor washboards in a few places. Definitely 2 wheel drive capable. The Tonto Creek crossing was wet but no more than axle deep. Probably OK for moderate to high clearance vehicles. The creek crossing had road closed signs at the entry points due to two road graders working on the road but we ignored the signs after seeing locals doing the same.

The lush green hillsides and abundance of colorful wild flowers along with the stunning views of the surrounding valleys and mountains made this a truly spectacular hike. Steep rocky slopes and a few sections of scrub oak slowed us down. The ankle deep grass hides ankle twisting rocks but thankfully no snakes (except one small garter snake). We didn't see much in the way of wildlife on the hike probably because we make way too much noise. But we did see a rather plump bobcat running across the road on the drive to the trailhead.
Flora
Flora
Mexican Vervain
Named place
Named place
Conway Ranch
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Apr 02 2019
Grasshopper
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 Guides 45
 Routes 472
 Photos 8,622
 Triplogs 534

75 male
 Joined Dec 28 2006
 Scottsdale, AZ
Boneyback PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 02 2019
Grasshopper
Hiking4.70 Miles 1,495 AEG
Hiking4.70 Miles   7 Hrs   2 Mns   0.82 mph
1,495 ft AEG   1 Hour   18 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
Oregon_Hiker
Thanks to a March'19 reschedule of a previously planned week vehicle camping / off-trail day hiking exploration trip, with another recommended HAZ-ssk44(Eric) posted hike that neither Oregon_Hiker nor myself had yet hiked, we decided to schedule this Bonneyback Peak (Ancha Benchmark) this day.

A few years back when I was in better physical condition- more regularily hiking and consuming less ice cream before bed, I traveled to this remote, less visited by hikers section of the Tonto National Forest and the Sierra Ancha Mountains in from Pumpkin Center, AZ, a number of times with Eric who introduced me to another awesome Arizona area for off-trail hike exploring, 4x4ing, camping, and scenic drives.

Today was a good day weatherwise and with all the preciptition this area has had this past Feb and early March, the Spring wildfloweers were abundent and the area in general was a lush green as well. I knew it was going to be a great wildflower day when I opened my door at the recommended Park/TH location and stepped on wildflowers :)

Oregon_Hiker and I had previously planned to take a less strenuous AEG route in/out than the hiking guide recommended route to all the peaks and various viewpoints along this ridge hiking route because we wanted to help assure we would make the hike in all the way to the ending main summit benchmark- Bonneyback Peak 5558 (Ancha Benchmark).

Our chosen route in was to traverse the minor peaks on the steep East slopes with extreme wildflowers and grass growth that covered most of the loose, grapefruit sized, ankle twisting rocks. Our route in also included five distinct, scenic saddles. Our ridgeline views near and far included scenery to die for! Part of my 1 hour and 18 minute break time posted above included more than a few GRAND memories of my previous day hike trips with Eric
to this area- :next: [ photo ] :D

All was going well until we decided to take a "shortcut" OUT to avoid the first peak [ photo ] steep/loose rocky slope traverse going IN. Here is my side of the story- :next: [ photo ]
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Extreme
Nice!!
_____________________
(Outside.. "there is No Place Like It!!")
3 archives
Aug 02 2014
CannondaleKid
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 Guides 43
 Routes 138
 Photos 21,830
 Triplogs 2,234

70 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
Boneyback PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 02 2014
CannondaleKid
Hiking4.50 Miles 2,008 AEG
Hiking4.50 Miles   4 Hrs   31 Mns   1.14 mph
2,008 ft AEG      35 Mns Break20 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
With two hikes mapped out I set off for the western Sierra Ancha area, I would do one or both hikes depending on the weather. As I headed east on FR71 from Punkin Center the skies gave me the feeling I'd have time for only one hike. The shorter hike would have entailed a longer drive (time, not distance) somewhat closer to the incoming weather so I went for a shorter drive and the more challenging hike, Boneyback Peak.

Rather than begin at the hike description trailhead from the east I approached from the north. I anticipated to pass through some thick brush to approach the first wash but was pleasantly surprised that last night a gully-washer created a nice wide path for me, devoid of any brush. While that was nice, the humidity from the overnight rains had not dissipated one bit so I already knew I was in for a sweat-drenched hike. In my attempt to put the worst of it off for a while, I took my sweet time.
Yeah right, like that would help?

Once I crossed the washed-out creek it wasn't long before I found a well-beaten game trail, and would continue on one a myriad of linked game trails all the way out, spending probably 95% of the time on a game trail. No bushwhacking through thick brush for me! (that would change on the return trip)

By time I reached a saddle just east of Peak 5531 I was fully soaked in sweat so I decided to skip it and head directly for Boneyback, only climbing 5531 on the return trip... if I felt like climbing more on the return trip.

From the upper saddle to Boneyback summit was easy enough so that went quickly. Being thoroughly drenched before reaching the summit I quickly took the usual panorama photos before taking time to pretty much strip off, wring out and hang every to dry... if only there was more than a wisp of wind and the humidity had dropped more. I waited over 30 minutes before putting everything back on and I ended up with some items dry and stiff while others were damp and icky-feeling.

Oh yeah, after suiting-up again NOW the sun peeks out... so I figured I'd get a second group of panorama shots and see which turn out better.
(The second pan set is on the HAZ photoset and all 77 photos are on my website as usual.)

Ok, I hear the thunder louder now so it's time to get moving. While it looked steeper up to Peak 5531 than I wanted to tackle on the way out, on the return across the upper saddle it didn't look bad at all. By time I got halfway up I realized why it looked steep before, because it WAS steeper! Ok, I'm up to the summit of Peak 5531 so I might as well shoot another panorama set. then I made another bad decision... descend down the even steeper slope directly east, instead of retracing my route back to the upper saddle and follow the deer trail back down.

Once back down to the lower saddle it seems I just wasn't going to learn... with the thunderstorms getting closer I thought I'd take a more direct route instead of following the route I took on the way up. While it was 'more direct' as in a straighter line, it was by far the tougher route, and I'm sure took longer than if I'd simply back-tracked and followed the game trails down. Instead I had the joy of crossing several deep drainages and passing through many thick fields of prickly-pear cactus. Luckily I only managed to brush against one, picking up several dozen of the fine spines that went through my pants like nothing was there. Thankfully after pulling up the pant-leg I saw they were in a tight bunch so it didn't take much to get them all out.

Back to the car I saw the sky getting even more ominous so there was no way I'd be trying to pick up the short hike as well. A couple minutes drive back on FR71 and I came upon a mule deer standing in the road just staring at me. I had my camera right next to me, but the windshield was so dirty I knew I'd have to turn to the right and shoot out the side window and I rolled to the side, just in time to see the deer jump up the road-side bank. Oh well, but after I drove around the corner there's the deer with its back to me turning it head to the side... so it looked more like a kangaroo. With the sky so dark behind me and overcast behind the deer I knew it would pretty much be a silhouette but took a few shots anyway. That was the only wildlife I saw, although I did scare up something big, probably another deer just before returning to the trailhead.

Heading back out FR71 I could see a downpour on the other side of AZ 188 just north of Mount Ord, but it had dissipated by time I get back to Punkin Center so I had a dry drive all the way until I was southbound on AZ 87 passing by Slate Creek, when it gave my Jeep a well-needed wash since it rarely gets one.

3-minute Boneyback Peak summit panorama is here:
[ youtube video ]
Fauna
Fauna
Mule Deer
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CannondaleKid
1 archive
Dec 31 2009
ssk44
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 Guides 19
 Routes 12
 Photos 2,283
 Triplogs 285

46 male
 Joined Mar 31 2008
 Gilbert, AZ
Boneyback PeakGlobe, AZ
Globe, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 31 2009
ssk44
Hiking6.20 Miles
Hiking6.20 Miles   7 Hrs      0.89 mph
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Boneyback Peak (12/31/2009)

I had a fun time on this hike. My hike description likely reflects that. Boneyback Peak far exceeded my expectations. Hiking Boneyback Peak truly summarizes all of my prior years of exploration within the Sierra Ancha Mountains. It was so cool to literally see everything from one summit. The upper rock outcroppings are insane! The pinyon pine was a welcome and unexpected surprise. One hillside along the hike was covered with live oak. I love oak trees. I highly recommend this hike. You wont regret it.

An added bonus to this trip was a specific name on the summit registry. A couple months back, I posted a new forum topic titled "USGS Survey Markers". Thanks to a very informative post by mikehikes, we all learned the interesting story of Bob Martin. A little further research on my end revealed that Bob had hiked all of the benchmark summits I have visited this season, including one particularly remote mountain that I am planning on doing within the next month. Thanks again mikehikes, for sharing the story of your friend and for the helpful information you provided.

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=4545


Eric (ssk44) 8)
_____________________
ISAIAH 6:2-3 / MATTHEW 11:28-30
2 archives
average hiking speed 0.88 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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