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Four Peaks - AZT #20 - 12 members in 57 triplogs have rated this an average 3.9 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Jun 13 2019
mazatzal
avatar

 Routes 31
 Photos 2,166
 Triplogs 1,074

62 male
 Joined Jul 28 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Jun 13 2019
mazatzal
Hiking3.00 Miles 550 AEG
Hiking3.00 Miles
550 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
scatdaddy
Sredfield
Four of us went to Four Peaks to clear deadfall along AZT #20.

First one was a bit tricky because it was hung up on another tree so first pulled it off the other tree so it was on the ground then we cut it. Safety first!
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
_____________________
Mar 29 2019
screeslider526
avatar

 Triplogs 49

67 female
 Joined Jun 24 2015
 Tucson, AZ
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 29 2019
screeslider5267
Hiking19.35 Miles 7,000 AEG
Hiking19.35 Miles
7,000 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
2 days doing Four Peaks. This trail has been given lots of love and it looks like it continuously needs love. The tread was nice in many places. I just don't do well on declines with little stones, so took a few slides. Tweaked a quad on one of them and then just continued to slide a few more times. So much lovely fresh water, clear, clear, clear. Shake, Adler, Buckhorn. Slept just off the trail near Chillicut Junction. A windy night and a little colder than the previous nights.
_____________________
Feb 13 2019
mazatzal
avatar

 Routes 31
 Photos 2,166
 Triplogs 1,074

62 male
 Joined Jul 28 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 13 2019
mazatzal
Hiking4.80 Miles 980 AEG
Hiking4.80 Miles
980 ft AEG
 no routes
Partners partners
scatdaddy
Sredfield
TheMazzicMan
Nine of us cleared 17 deadfall from Pigeon Spring TH south to Oak Flat trail junction.

Some patches of snow along the trail and plenty of snow up above us on the peaks. Great weather: a little overcast, not too cold and not too hot. A great day to be out with a great group.
Named place
Named place
Pigeon Spring Shake Spring
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Pigeon Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute

dry Shake Spring Dry Dry
_____________________
1 archive
Mar 28 2018
toddak
avatar

 Guides 8
 Routes 5
 Photos 1,071
 Triplogs 399

54 male
 Joined Nov 15 2005
 Puhoynix, AZ
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 28 2018
toddak
Hiking18.50 Miles 4,500 AEG
Hiking18.50 Miles   8 Hrs      2.31 mph
4,500 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Partners none no partners
NOBO, huge climb and views, great trail conditions. Exited down OF123, mtn biked back to start. Other than the lakes in the distance, didn't see any water.
_____________________
1 archive
Mar 25 2018
toddak
avatar

 Guides 8
 Routes 5
 Photos 1,071
 Triplogs 399

54 male
 Joined Nov 15 2005
 Puhoynix, AZ
Oak Flat Trail #123Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 25 2018
toddak
Hiking24.50 Miles 3,500 AEG
Hiking24.50 Miles   10 Hrs   30 Mns   2.33 mph
3,500 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Up Oak Flat then NOBO to finish some miles on AZT#21 that I had missed, returned via PS loop. Big views but tedious road walking.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Shake Spring Dripping Dripping
Pools and trickle flow in the drainage below the spring. Pigeon Spring had water in the box and muddy downhill ground. Didn't drink from either.
_____________________
1 archive
Jan 13 2018
ultrazona
avatar

 Routes 1
 Photos 613
 Triplogs 153

32 male
 Joined Mar 07 2009
 Phoenix, AZ
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Jan 13 2018
ultrazona
Backpack39.00 Miles 7,000 AEG
Backpack39.00 Miles1 Day   12 Hrs      
7,000 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Check that off the list. Only water was Pigeon Springs on section 20. Horrific taste, couldn't hardly eat dinner. Only water on Section 21 was Crabtree Spring (multiple pools) and Sycamore Creek.

dry Granite Spring Dry Dry
Nothing. Hardly even mud.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Pigeon Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Bathtub size amount in tank. Worst tasting water so far in all my backpacking days. Taste like a dead animal. Couldn't mask it with lemon water. Ruined dehydrated meals. Avoid if you can.

dry Shake Spring Dry Dry
Nothing.
_____________________
ultrazona.com
Dec 31 2017
CannondaleKid
avatar

 Guides 43
 Routes 137
 Photos 20,568
 Triplogs 1,922

69 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
AZT #20 to Mills TH Shuttle, AZ 
AZT #20 to Mills TH Shuttle, AZ
 
Scenic Drive avatar Dec 31 2017
CannondaleKid
Scenic Drive20.60 Miles 4,083 AEG
Scenic Drive20.60 Miles   3 Hrs   40 Mns   12.36 mph
4,083 ft AEG   2 Hrs    Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Partners partners
trixiec
2nd day in a row I'm providing Tracey with shuttle-driver service.

This trip will be as originally planned for yesterday, dropping Tracey off at Vineyard/AZT #20 TH and pick her up at the Mills TH. With such a short distance between drop-off and pick-up spots, I decided to check out a few more Forest Roads in the area.

I'd never driven Forest Road 647 so I figured that would be a good start. It turned out to be an enjoyable & scenic half-hour loop around the perimeter of the Three Bar Wildlife Enclosure.
(At this time the enclosure is open to allow deer as well as predators to roam in/out at will)

After that nice loop, I filmed the drive to Mills TH on Forest Road 429. With plenty of time before Tracey would arrive, I drove back to Forest road 336 and followed it to the concurrent couple hundred feet with AZT #20, where I would wait until Tracey arrived. I wasn't there long before she showed up, at which time she said a quick Hi! and kept on going while I drove back to Mills TH. She was moving at a pretty good clip so I didn't have long to wait.

Another nice day for scenic drives while Tracey got in her last hike of the year... ending right at 600 miles, a bit shy of her 650 mile goal. It probably didn't help matters that I've been out-of-action since early November.

The GoPro video is just over 11 minutes long so feel free to skip ahead:
Drive from AZ 188 to Mills TH on Forest Road 429
_____________________
CannondaleKid
2 archives
Nov 08 2017
DallinW
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 105
 Photos 1,740
 Triplogs 228

27 male
 Joined Feb 26 2015
 Gilbert AZ
AZT: Sunflower to Roosevelt, AZ 
AZT: Sunflower to Roosevelt, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Nov 08 2017
DallinW
Backpack54.00 Miles 10,154 AEG
Backpack54.00 Miles2 Days   5 Hrs      
10,154 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
I joined my friend Andrew on a stretch of the AZT for a few days. I had originally planned to join him from Sunflower to Superior, but ended up calling it quits on day 3 just after Roosevelt because I was feeling sick.

We left PHX Tuesday night and got dropped off on the closed road to Bushnell Tanks by my cousin. We walked backed about 200 yards, plopped down our stuff, and made camp on the side of the road.

Day 1
We woke up around 6:30, quickly packed our things and hit the trail by 6:45. After following the road for a little while, we dipped into the wash and followed it until we joined up with the Arizona Trail. The climb up Boulder Canyon seemed very nice in contrast to the climb up the other side on Passage 20. Ample shade in the morning, possible flowing water if hit at the right time, and easier climbing. The trail is starting to bite back a little in this area and could use a little clipping here and there.

After the climb, we strolled along the road towards Pidgeon Springs and arrived at Pidgeon Springs around 1:30PM. 20 miles before 2PM, nice. We took an hour lunch break by the spring, filled our bottles, and continued on. After another 7.5 miles we decided to start looking for camping. We found a nice spot to camp about 50 yards off the trail on a saddle that has great views of the lake and 4 peaks. This part of the AZT is a real treat!

Day 2
I woke up feeling pretty drained, but that's not too unusual after a big first day, and I've bounced back plenty of times before. We get rolling out of camp around 6:45. I tried forcing down some poptarts thinking that was probably the reason I was so fatigued, but could only eat half a pack. My food bag was pretty much untouched except for a few tortillas and some cheese I ate the night before.

As we made our way down hill, I kept feeling more and more sick to my stomach. With no water between our us and Roosevelt, the sun starting to beat down on us, we both didn't want to stop and pressed on to Roosevelt. When we reached the Marina I was feeling terrible and getting ready to call it a trip. After relaxing for a couple of hours and finally eating some calories, I felt good enough to keep going. My rally was short lived. About 3 miles outside Roosevelt I was starting to feel nauseous again and told Andrew I wanted to stop at the water tank in 0.7 miles, about 3 miles short of our target for the day.

Day 3
I woke up still feeling crappy but ready to give it another shot. We rolled out of camp around 6:30. After another 3 miles I decided I still wasn't feeling good enough to hike, so I told Andrew I was turning around. I sat down for about 10 mins and we chatted about meeting up in Superior the next day so I could get him some shoes he ordered to my place, or where I could forward them to if we didn't meet up.

We said our goodbyes, then parted ways. I slowly made my way back to Roosevelt, passing a road hunter and several campsites which were set up but with no people in them (more hunters). Once I hit the paved road I then hitched back to PHX.
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
Here and there in the washes and canyons.

dry Buckhorn Spring Dry Dry

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Cottonwood Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Water flowing across the trail.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Pigeon Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Clear, some algae, pretty funky tasting atm.

dry Shake Spring Dry Dry
_____________________
Apr 07 2017
pjhikes
avatar

 Photos 171
 Triplogs 19

63 female
 Joined Jan 12 2015
 Prescott Valley,
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Apr 07 2017
pjhikes
Backpack19.35 Miles 7,000 AEG
Backpack19.35 Miles
7,000 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Started from Mills Ridge TH where we ended a past day hike from the Lake, and made our way to Sunflower where we left a car. First day was the climb up with great views of the Lake behind us. Everything is so green right now, and lots of flowers! Past the flowing Buckhorn Creek we came across a tent city where the conservation corp crew had set up camp, and we came across the crew a few miles later and thanked them for all the work clearing the trail. Shortly after we passed them the trail did get a little overgrown and I managed to get some nice custom AZT pin-stripes on my legs since I was wearing shorts (lesson learned). The views of the north side of four peaks were awesome. Ended our day just before Shake Spring (also flowing very well) since it was one of the only places we found that worked for setting up two tents. We filtered some yummy clear water from the flowing spring.

The next day was mostly road walking once we reached Pigeon Spring TH. We did not see water at Pigeon Spring. We did do a water drop at El Oso Road, so we picked up our water for the remainder of the trip. We came across more water at Boulder Creek (several times), and soaked our feet for a while for a nice break. Started looking for camp spots after that and finally found a spot just past the gate at passage mile 13.2. The frogs in Boulder Creek serenaded us as the sun set.

Day three was the drop down to more desert like terrain on the way to Sunflower. Lots of water in Sycamore Creek. The wildflowers started to show themselves again. Another lovely weekend on the AZT.
Flora
Flora
Claret Cup Cactus
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Granite Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Shake Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Clear flowing water.
_____________________
Apr 07 2017
wha
avatar

 Photos 88
 Triplogs 338

male
 Joined Feb 10 2012
 Arizona
Azt #20 - #21, AZ 
Azt #20 - #21, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Apr 07 2017
wha
Backpack39.20 Miles 9,075 AEG
Backpack39.20 Miles
9,075 ft AEG24 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Started up that first big climb from Vineyard TH in the early afternoon. It was a bit warm with the sun beating down, but once up on the flatter section it was a nice hike. Great views of Roosevelt, Salt River canyon and Four Peaks. Decided to stop at Buckhorn Creek and leave the next big climb for the morning. Lots of water, and a sweet little camp site just above the trail crossing.

Next morning as I was packing, there was some cracking of brush and 2 other hikers went up out of the creek bottom. They must have arrived late last night while I slept to the other camp site that's just below the trail crossing. Above Granite Spring I came upon an ACE trail crew and I chatted with them a bit. They were hoping to soon get some spots cleared enough for the mules that haul up their water so they could move their base camp further up the mountain.

I caught up with Two Liter and Top Shelf, the 2 thrus I saw in the morning, at Shake Spring. That was the first good water since Buckhorn. We met up again at Pigeon Spring to fill up, and chatted about water, gear and the sun. The spring was just trickling, and tasted rather of sulfur, but it's water. After that it's 12 miles of road walk. A few steeper spots, but mostly good road. I camped before the big downhill started.

Boulder Creek was my next water source, cold and good water. Had lunch on the banks of Sycamore Creek and then hiked on to Sunflower. I missed the trail that goes to the trailhead so I went through the tunnel under 87 and then up to the road and caught a ride into Payson.
_____________________
Mar 04 2017
DallinW
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 105
 Photos 1,740
 Triplogs 228

27 male
 Joined Feb 26 2015
 Gilbert AZ
AZT Spring Break 2017, AZ 
AZT Spring Break 2017, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Mar 04 2017
DallinW
Backpack159.40 Miles 34,237 AEG
Backpack159.40 Miles9 Days         
34,237 ft AEG1 Day       Break
 no routes
1st trip
Fauna
Fauna
Gila Monster
Culture
Culture
Dream

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Amethyst West Drainage at Trail #130 Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Cienga Creek @ AZT Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Cottonwood Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Better flow as you head down the drainage.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 East Fork Sabino Canyon Heavy flow Heavy flow

dry Granite Spring Dry Dry

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Grass Shack Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Italian Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Lemmon Creek @ WOR #44 Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Manning Camp Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Mineral Creek Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Pine Creek at Reavis Gap #117 Medium flow Medium flow


water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Reavis Creek at Gap Trail #117 Heavy flow Heavy flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Rincon Creek @ AZT Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Shake Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Sycamore Reservoir 51-75% full 51-75% full

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

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Upper Molino Creek Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Walnut Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
_____________________
5 archives
Dec 08 2016
markthurman53
avatar

 Guides 83
 Routes 488
 Photos 5,777
 Triplogs 405

66 male
 Joined Jun 27 2015
 Tucson, Arizona
AZT #20 Pigeon Spring to Bear Saddle, AZ 
AZT #20 Pigeon Spring to Bear Saddle, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Dec 08 2016
markthurman53
Hiking11.50 Miles 2,585 AEG
Hiking11.50 Miles   5 Hrs   48 Mns   2.38 mph
2,585 ft AEG      58 Mns Break20 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Trail Head at Pigeon Spring Road to just south of Bear Saddle. Round Trip hike. Great up close views of Four Peaks along with Tonto Basin and Roosevelt Lake in the distance. Trail is in good condition and easy to follow. There was no water along the trail except a little at Shake spring. It has been a dry Fall so what normally should be running wasn't.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Shake Spring Dripping Dripping
a little
_____________________
Oct 01 2016
sandyfortner
avatar

 Photos 888
 Triplogs 61

63 female
 Joined Mar 16 2009
 apache junction,
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Oct 01 2016
sandyfortner
Backpack19.35 Miles 7,000 AEG
Backpack19.35 Miles2 Days         
7,000 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
WanderingWildcat
What a beautiful passage!! We split this passage into 2 parts. On Saturday, we hiked the 6 miles from Mill Ridge to Roosevelt Lake. We started in the afternoon and boy was it toasty!! On the ridge we had a nice breeze, but every time we had a little climb we had only west sun and no breeze. Whew! Trail was easy to follow and tread on the ridge is great. The downhill - well, it's really down but there seemed to be pretty good traction. Views - wow! From the ridge you could see for miles in all directions and then the trail winds around so that you can see down Apache Lake. WanderingWildcat went on ahead and did the last 4ish miles of passage 19 to the Visitors' Center while Maria and I dragged ourselves out to the Lake parking lot. Camped at Bermuda Flats under a clear, starry sky. NOAA had reported Sunday as being sunny and since Saturday was nothing but sunny and we woke up to clear skies, we left our rain gear and set up the shuttle from Pine Springs TH to Mill Ridge. SAR was up the Pine Springs TH and was coordinating to search for a missing hiker who I guess was trying to get up the back of Four Peaks the day before and did not return to his car. As we headed out, cloud cover came and we were grateful. By mid-morning we had rain but it was one of those nice rains. Not hot and humid and not cold. All day it rained, misted, stopped, started but nothing much. Each of us had some form of emergency rain gear, so we were very comfortable all day, although my $1 poncho was pretty trashed by the end! Parts of this section are nice, wide, clear, sandy tread. Other parts are very brushy!! At some sections the technique was poles in hands, fists in front of your face, and PUSH through all while laughing at the absurdity of the vegetation! But, when out of the brush, the views were stunning! Roosevelt was almost always in view, 1 - 4 of Four Peaks came and went in our views, and at one point we reached a saddle and could see Superstition Peak and Miner's Needle. Came across a small rattlesnake coiled up along the trail. 2 of us walked right by it but WanderingWildcat saw it. Also saw a tarantula. Lots of bear scat - lots! The parts of the trail that run RIGHT along the side of the mountain are pretty good. No real washouts although some areas have more of a diagonal, rather than flat, tread. Trickiest part was through the burn area. Logs down across the trail that needed to be negotiated and all along that steep hillside. Definitely had my "freak-o-meter" going although my other 2 hiking partners seemed to do much better. The ONLY water we saw on this passage came from the sky. Although we didn't hike up to Alder Spring, we saw no water anywhere along the trail, in pools, or in drainages. A little fall color but most of the oaks have already turned. Still a few wildflowers out there. Arrived at Mill Ridge TH a little after 4 and headed on out.
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Light
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
_____________________
:M2C: Goldilocks
Oct 01 2016
WanderingWildc
avatar

 Photos 116
 Triplogs 12

37 female
 Joined Jun 06 2016
 Tucson
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 01 2016
WanderingWildcat
Hiking19.35 Miles 7,000 AEG
Hiking19.35 Miles
7,000 ft AEG14 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Hiked this Passage with my friend Sandy and her friend Maria on October 1-2, 2016. On Saturday afternoon, we hiked the southern 6 miles of the trail from Mills Ridge Trailhead to the bridge over Roosevelt Lake. It was a hot day, but great views of Apache Lake and Roosevelt lake near the end of that section. We stayed overnight at Bermuda Falls Campground and hit Pigeon Springs Trailhead early Sunday morning and hiked south to Mills Ridge Trailhead. The weather was much cooler and we even had sporadic rain falling. Lots of forest trees and leaves on the ground. Parts of the trail were also a little rocky but not too bad. We did not run into any water sources along the trail, all the springs and creeks were dry. Great day to hike a really nice part of the Arizona Trail.
_____________________
Aug 01 2016
CannondaleKid
avatar

 Guides 43
 Routes 137
 Photos 20,568
 Triplogs 1,922

69 male
 Joined May 04 2004
 Mesa, AZ
Pigeon Spring Loop, AZ 
Pigeon Spring Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Aug 01 2016
CannondaleKid
Hiking6.50 Miles 1,520 AEG
Hiking6.50 Miles   3 Hrs   41 Mns   1.88 mph
1,520 ft AEG      13 Mns Break20 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Tracey had her birthday off and she wanted something 'reasonably' cool in temperature as well as views.
Hmmm, let's see, we hadn't done Brown's Peak in some time so maybe... NOPE!
She put her foot down fast on that one, you know, the 30% chance of thunderstorms after 11 am.
:scared:
I know... she just doesn't want to climb Browns Peak, probably EVER again.
:bdh:
I'm still set on driving up that way so we settled for a counter-clockwise Pigeon Spring Loop.
(Note spring singular as there is only one spring)

Since she's not one want anything but a nice hike on her birthday, little did she know just how much excitement she'd have on this birthday.

On the way up Four Peaks Road (FR 143) a few miles before the top we noticed a large cross. Having driven this road many a time over the years I had never noticed something this obvious, so it had to be recent. We glanced at it on our way but didn't stop, figuring we'll investigate further on the return trip. (We will, later...)

No vehicles at the Lone Pine TH so we had a very peaceful start. The clouds over Four Peaks appeared to be thinning out but we took our rain gear just in case.

We began on Four Peaks Trail #130 and hadn't gone a quarter mile before we encountered light sprinkles. But even at 72 degrees the humidity was such that I was loathe to put on my rain jacket. When the sprinkles continued I draped it over me to shield my camera if we should get a quick cloud-burst, but luckily the sprinkles soon stopped and the rest of the hike would be dry... except for the wet brush along the trails, of which there was plenty.

There were a few spots of over-growth along Trail #130 before the Pigeon Trail #134 intersection but they were of little consequence. However, between that intersection and the #130/#123 intersection (concurrent with AZT#20) there was a bit more over-growth. In a few spots the trail was completely blocked so I used my small pruning clipper to make a path.

But with branches as large as 1" in diameter it took a number of attempts before cutting through. If I had known this ahead of time I would have brought along my folding pruning saw, which was back in the Jeep.
:whistle:
Oh well... But if this growth continues, by next March through-hikers may have a bit harder time passing through this area.

Although it was still early when we reached the #130/#123 intersection, we were both famished so it was lunch time. The last time we were here (March 2015) this area was well shaded, but now after the fire (earlier this year I think?) we had no shade to speak of... at least where there was a comfortable place to sit.
:-({|=
Lunch over, time to begin the return trip. It shouldn't be a big deal, it's all downhill from... whoa! hold on just a minute, it's ALL UPHILL from here.
:sweat:
Once we passed through the areas I had trimmed and hit the Pigeon Trail things went pretty well. It seemed after each short steeper section there would be a flatter area to catch our breath before the next climb. It was still plenty humid though so again I found myself drenched from head to toe.
:sweat:
We took the short detour so we could say we at least SAW Pigeon Spring but kept on going. Back at the TH there was a man & his dog lazily wandering around before eventually heading out on the Four Peaks Trail like we had earlier.

Ok, our loop is complete but we aren't ready to head home yet so we drove north along FR 422 to check out future campsites. We took a short out-and-back hike to the end of FR 1351 but every halfway flat spot to pitch a tent on had an ant hill taking up residence.
](*,)
Farther north along FR 422 we did find a couple nice spots which we will keep in mind for our next two-day camping trip.

On the drive back down FR 143 we stopped to see what the private memorial was all about. It looks to be a pretty solid welded steel plate cross cemented into the boulder. Upon further investigation, it is for a man who was shot in North Tonawanda NY back on January 10, 2016. I can only assume it was placed there by his parents who I believe live in Mesa.
Whatever... the FS knows about it and is determining what to do about it.

In no hurry to get home we were taking a leisurely drive on FR 143. As we turned the corner by Cline TH there were two pickups, one with its back end off the road. The second pickup was just another guy who was driving by but had no means to help the one stuck, seemingly sticking around to see if other help would arrive. It did... and it was us!

I didn't ask, but it appears the guy was turning around and backed into the ditch. Although it was a 4x4 it would not engage and by this time had dug his wheels in pretty good. (bad?)
](*,)
I didn't have my winch this trip, only a short strap with metal hooks on each end. It was NOT designed for this so I was a bit gun-shy. Let's just say I did not want a repeat of a past-life experience with flying metal hooks, my 'duck!' reflex isn't near what it used to be.

Ok, we're hooked up, I put it in 4-low with both lockers on, took up the slack and tried to go. Nope, as I figured, the hard surface with a healthy coating of loose pea-gravel provided no traction whatsoever. So... just how much slack should I give before taking a run at it? I tried a 5-foot run at it and just got a grunt but the pickup didn't move.
](*,)
Ok, so now we have to get serious! The strap was hooked as low as possible on both vehicles so hopefully if we have a flying hook, it won't come through any windows.
I figured one last yank and if he's not out, too bad, we're outta here. So I backed up to provide about ten feet of slack and just hit the gas. BAM! The pickup was out of the ditch!
:y:
Hopefully the 4WD not engaging would be his only issue to fix, but when I looked at his right rear tire, it was so heat-checked with dry-cracks and even a piece of the sidewall gone so the cords were visible I told him this is a blow-out just waiting to happen.
:scared:
Whatever, it's his problem now and we headed on down the road. Because we were in no hurry, we let the guy in the other truck pass us, only to find him off the road a few miles farther on. So here's this guy standing next to his truck with a sheepish grin on his face, waiting for us to arrive.
:whistle:
He took one corner a bit too wide and his right front tire dug into a huge bank of soft pea-gravel, and of course the first instinct is to turn the wheel left... only to dig it in deeper.
:tt:
While it wasn't really funny, it was, because his son (5 years old?) had told him to slow down a while back but he didn't, and had paid the consequence.
:guilty:
While Tracey kept the boy entertained (well away from the vehicles) we got his truck hooked up
to the Jeep and this time, even with a bit better traction I decided one good yank is all we need, and that's just what it took. With profuse thanks he was on his way before we got turned back around.

I joked with Tracey that I should have told the guy it would cost him $100 to pull him out. If he said, wait, you didn't charge the other guy anything I'd say, well, based on his old beater truck that's probably all he could afford, but you have a brand new truck, so it will cost you... besides, you shouldn't put your 5 year old in danger like that.
[-X
We had no further adventures but Tracey will be sure to remember this birthday for a long time.
:y:
All's well that ends well, I guess.
_____________________
CannondaleKid
Apr 09 2016
DallinW
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 105
 Photos 1,740
 Triplogs 228

27 male
 Joined Feb 26 2015
 Gilbert AZ
AZT: Roosevelt to Washington Park, AZ 
AZT: Roosevelt to Washington Park, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Apr 09 2016
DallinW
Backpack132.20 Miles 26,979 AEG
Backpack132.20 Miles7 Days         
26,979 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
April 9th
Miles: 19
AEG: 6,413 ft

We started the climb from the 188 around 7:30 AM. The goal for the day was to make it to Pigeon Springs. The weather was great, and the views of Roosevelt Lake got more spectacular as we climbed out of the basin. After taking a break at Buckhorn Spring, the trail climbs relentlessly before topping out and contouring the mountain.

Eventually we turned a corner and BAM!, the four craggy peaks were staring us right in the face. Quite the view! The trail through the Four Peaks passage is very well maintained, except for a small stretch where we were pushing through overgrowth that nearly obscures the trail. Despite the large swaths of burned forest, this passage was one of my favorite so far. Eventually we reached Pigeon Springs and found a relatively flat spot to set up our tents.

April 10th
Miles: 19
AEG: 2,196 ft

The morning began with a clear sky. After packing up the gear we headed for Pigeon Springs Rd to begin the long road walk. I'm usually not a fan of road walks, but this was an exception. There were great views on either side of the Superstitions, Sierra Ancha, and Lake Roosevelt. The immediate area itself was very beautiful as well. Around 10 AM we could see clouds beginning to build on top of Browns Peak, and a storm hitting the Supes.

We stopped to take out the rain jackets and a white mini-van rolled up and asked if this road would take them all the way back to the 87. I pulled out my map and told them it looked like the road ended well before reaching the 87 and that they needed to turn around and take El Oso or the other forest road. The wife sitting in the passenger seat seemed concerned that we were about to be backpacking out in the rain. :roll: By 11 AM it was lightly raining, which was initially quite exciting (I needed to test the rain gear anyway).

Just as we reached the Boulder Creek drainage the storm began to give us its all. Heavy rain, wind, and thunder! By the time we reached Sunflower, the trail was a muddy slip and slide, my phone was soaked and unresponsive (may it RIP ](*,) ), and we were slightly chilled.

We waited under the 87 underpass for my brother to arrive, who was picking us up so I could take an exam for an online class I'm taking before returning to the trail the next day.

April 11th
Miles: 12
AEG: 2,643 ft

After finishing up my exam, we were back on trail around 1 PM. Under the 87, we did some last minute gear prep before heading out and ran into three other hikers, Giltch, Kegel, and Minus. They were 17 days into their thru-hike and were excited to get into Pine for some much needed beer. We were all aiming for McFarland Canyon for the night.

We started up Saddle Mountain and enjoyed all the green scenery in the area. Just before reaching camp, we passed the half way mark for the AZT and celebrated with the thru-hikers before settling down for the night in McFarland Canyon.

April 12th
Miles: 21
AEG: 5,249 ft

The thru-hikers were up and leaving camp just as we were beginning to pack up. We weren't sure if we would ever see them again. The trail gets a little hard to follow just after McFarland Canyon to Thicket Spring. The Guthooks app says to head straight up a wash but apparently there is an alternative route that is clear of brush and well defined that you can take at the first junction past McFarland.

Once we reached the junction for the Peeley TH we stopped to take a break and ran into Joe, a gentleman I had met at a trail maintenance event about a month earlier. Quite the coincidence, if we would have left a minute earlier we probably would have never seen him. He was meeting up with another fellow to remove some downed trees along the trail.

The views along the Mazatzal Divide from Peeley to Y-Bar were my favorite for the entire trip. The rugged peaks of the Mazatzals and expansive views on either side were exciting to see. We ran into Minus again at the Bear Spring junction taking a lunch break. After taking our own lunch break at the spring, we headed for Horse Camp Seep.

As we approached Horse Camp Seep, we ran into the three thru-hikers again. There was another hour or so of light, so they continued on, we decided to call it a day where there was water. Horse Camp Seep was a sweet spot and had great camping.

April 13th
Miles: 18
AEG: 2,907 ft

The goal for the day was to make it to the East Verde River, a relatively easy day that was mostly downhill. We made our way along the Divide trail and passed "The Park", an inviting stand of pines and great campsites. We stopped to take a lunch break at the Red Hills seeps. From here the trail descends steeply to the East Verde River. Not very fun for the knees.

We camped just across the river and enjoyed the warmest night of the trip. We were now done with the Mazzies, and I felt the proposed "overgrowth" was kind of blown out of proportion, or there has been a lot of trail work in the past couple of months. Probably a bit of both. ;) I never felt like the trail was hard to find (except for the stretch between McFarland and Thicket) or that I had to deal with excessive brush that I wouldn't expect on most wilderness trails.

April 14th
Miles: 23
AEG: 4,196 ft

With burgers and beer on our minds, we got up early to make it into Pine with sufficient time to hit up THAT brewery and the market. The rocks along Whiterock and Hardscrabble Mesas were annoying and it felt like I was constantly stubbing my toes or rolling my ankle. Otherwise the area is quite beautiful and welcoming. The rocks put these two passages high on my list of "one and done" passages.

We reached Pine around 5pm with plenty of time to get burgers and beer. Lo and behold, we run into Minus, Kegel, and Giltch at the brewery along with another thru-hiker, Thomas, who was taking a zero in town. We joined them and enjoyed the comradery. Thomas decided to join us at camp for the night near the Pine TH while the others reserved the cabin in the back.

April 15th
Miles: 17
AEG: 3,303 ft

We woke up with frost all over our gear. :yuck: After packing up, Thomas headed for the Highline and we headed for breakfast at the Early Bird. Just before we finished up eating we ran into Minus who was getting some breakfast himself.

We headed for the Highline. It was nice to be climbing on a well graded trail with less rocks, especially because a hole was beginning to develop in my right shoe. I could feel every rock under my foot on that spot.

At Red Rock Spring we made a quick stop and finished off the last bit of the Arizona Trail Ale we picked up the night before at the market.

Once we reached Webber Creek we caught up with Thomas who was drying out all his gear. We stopped to take a break, and eventually Minus came strolling down the trail to join us. Minus decided to hike with us for a stretch after the break. The Rim gets right up in your face along this stretch and red dirt contrasting with the green pines and cedars made for great scenery.

We were about 9 miles from the finish and a little antsy to finish up. Eventually Minus stopped to take a lunch break and we continued on after filtering some water. Now with only 5 miles left, we kicked it into high gear and made for the Washington Park TH. Clouds started to build along the rim.

We reached the trailhead and got ready to hunker down for a few hours of inclement weather before our ride would arrive. However, after a few snow flurries, the clouds broke. Eventually Thomas and the other three thru-hikers caught up with us, we exchanged information, and said our goodbyes. All of them were very enthusiastic about Arizona and couldn't stop commenting on the diversity of the state and how we had a pretty cool home.

---------------------------------------

Besides my foot issue due to my failing shoe on the last day, I felt great this entire trip. I never woke up sore or feeling exhausted. I listened to my body, and I was proactive about keeping my feet and knees happy. It really paid off and made the trip that much more enjoyable.

This concludes all of Southern and Central Arizona passages for me. I'm looking forward to the easy walking on the plateau to the UT border!
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
Lots of lupine in the middle elevations, not much at the highest and lowest elevations.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Bear Spring - Fisher Gallon per minute Gallon per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Chilson Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Pools and light flow in drainage just south of spring.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max East Fork of Chase Creek @ Highline Light flow Light flow

dry Granite Spring Dry Dry

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Hopi Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Flowing across the trail.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Horse Camp Seep Quart per minute Quart per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max North Sycamore Creek @ Highline Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Oak Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Pigeon Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Flowing over the cement box.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Polk Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Flowing across the trail, really muddy.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Pool East of 4264 - Boulder Creek Light flow Light flow
Pools with light flow in some areas.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Red Rock Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Shake Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Great flow, great water.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Upper McFarland @ #88/95 Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Webber Creek @ Highline Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Whiterock Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Best water of the trip.
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1 archive
Mar 24 2016
diesul
avatar

 Photos 14
 Triplogs 13

43 female
 Joined Mar 29 2011
 Mesa, AZ
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 24 2016
diesul
Hiking2.74 Miles 1,079 AEG
Hiking2.74 Miles   4 Hrs      0.69 mph
1,079 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
We parked at the Roosevelt Bridge and headed up the trail. It is a good climb until you get to the radio tower at the top of the hill. We hiked up to the radio tower before heading back. There were tons of wildflowers and nice views of the dam. The lake was beautiful in the background.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Theodore Roosevelt Lake 26-50% full 26-50% full
_____________________
Mar 24 2016
markthurman53
avatar

 Guides 83
 Routes 488
 Photos 5,777
 Triplogs 405

66 male
 Joined Jun 27 2015
 Tucson, Arizona
AZT #20 FSR 429 to Bear Saddle, AZ 
AZT #20 FSR 429 to Bear Saddle, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Mar 24 2016
markthurman53
Hiking14.50 Miles 3,601 AEG
Hiking14.50 Miles   7 Hrs   48 Mns   2.36 mph
3,601 ft AEG   1 Hour   40 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
This is a round trip hike from Forest service Road 429 to Just short of bear saddle. The elevation gain is mainly from South to north. There was water along the trail at Granite Spring but that was about it. The trail is steep at first and not real interesting but as you get near Chillicut Spring the views of the four peaks are the best I've seen.
_____________________
Mar 19 2016
ttretta
avatar

 Photos 55
 Triplogs 28

54 female
 Joined Jul 28 2015
 Gilbert, AZ
Four Peaks - AZT #20Payson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Mar 19 2016
ttretta
Backpack19.35 Miles 7,000 AEG
Backpack19.35 Miles2 Days         
7,000 ft AEG37 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Beautiful but warm day on the trail. Spent 9 hours hiking, and only made it 14 miles due to the climbing and the heat. My trekking umbrella came in handy. Absolutely gorgeous scenery, and the wildflowers were in full bloom. Buckhorn creek has a really nice flow going, so replenished water and washed some of the sweat off. Granite spring was bone dry. Camped near Black Bear Saddle with a magnificent view of Four Peaks. Very slow first day. But really enjoyed the second day. There was a beautiful puddle just past the Alder Saddle Trail Junction, which I utilized to fill up, not realizing how many streams would be running along the way just past this. Shake Springs was a really nice gorgeous flowing creek, and there were 3 or so more after that, most likely due to the remaining bit of snow on Brown's peak. The burned out sections were very sad to see. At the end, I couldn't find the trough for Pigeon spring, just the concrete one that was completely dry. There was a fire pit with seating, but couldn't locate the metal trough. Gorgeous, tough trip.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial
_____________________
Mar 12 2016
BiFrost
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 338
 Photos 6,903
 Triplogs 803

49 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
AZT Supes-Mazatzal, AZ 
AZT Supes-Mazatzal, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Mar 12 2016
BiFrost
Backpack107.24 Miles 21,444 AEG
Backpack107.24 Miles3 Days   9 Hrs   56 Mns   
21,444 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Joined FOTG for some AZT sections starting at Picketpost TH heading northbound. He planned to do 6 days ending at Pine TH but I couldn't get all the time off work so hiked 4 days with him to Peeley TH before parting ways.

Day 1 - 30.04 miles 5,846 AEG

We started at Picketpost TH on the Reavis Canyon AZT section # 18. The first 10 miles is mostly desert walking but quickly changes once the trail drops into Whitford and then Reavis Canyon. There was water in several places between mile 10 and 13 of the section. Spring time was in full effect in the canyon with assorted wildflowers, lush green grass, and cottonwoods already filled out.

From there it was up Montana Mtn and quickly bagged Montana which is only tenth of a mile off the AZT. Then on the road over to Rogers Trough TH. No time to stop we continued on down Rogers Canyon and up to Reavis Saddle. Heading into Reavis Ranch area we passed probably 25 or 30 people camping along the valley. We headed up Reavis Gap trail and didn't see anyone after that making our way over to Pine Creek and then Walnut Spring which would be our camp for the night as it was getting totally dark.

Day 2 - 25.92 miles 6,045 AEG

Earlier start at 610 heading out across Two Bar Ridge in the Supes with great views of Four Peaks and Sierra Ancha. This section is rough by AZT standards but we made it past Pinyon Mtn and started the long descent down Cottonwood Canyon. Arriving at Cottonwood Spring we found good water and filled up. Cottonwood had several more good water options with pools and flowing water for about a mile after the spring. Once at the end of Cottonwood Canyon the trail exits onto road and then single track again as it traverses above Roosevelt Lake. This section is deceiving in that there is significant AEG and mileage added because of all the drainages and ridges that it crosses in route to Roosevelt Bridge. This part dragged on but we made the bridge and with no fan fare we headed straight up the hill on start of Four Peaks AZT #20. Running behind schedule it's is a tough climb up to Mills Ridge TH. Fortunately Kathy was nice enough to meet us at Mills Ridge TH with some water and snacks:-) We rested for almost an hour enjoying the visit before heading up the trail in search of a camp spot which ended up being Buckhorn Creek. To our surprise the creek was flowing and turned out to be a great camp spot.

Day 3 - 31.31 miles 4,756 AEG

Longest day for mileage so we broke camp 6 on the dot. Still had a lot of AEG to climb up Four Peaks but the views of the lake with sunrise were really awesome! Eventually we made Chillcut Saddle where the trail begins to traverse below Four Peaks. Some of the coolest views and hiking on all of the AZT. We traversed for about 6 miles seeing some water at Alder Saddle trail junction before dropping down on the north side of Four Peaks. Once the north side there was significant water with Shake Spring being the first one crossed. Shake was pretty much a river flowing very strong and we could still see a lot of snow up on Browns Peaks. After that there were at least 3 other drainages that had good flow but we continued on to Pigeon Spring taking a break and filling up. The spring box at Pigeon had very clear water.

After the break we headed out on 11.5 miles of road hiking along the El Oso road. After seeing very few people for 2 days we now had to share the road with ATV's and Jeeps. However, to their credit many of them asked if we needed anything like water etc. FOTG scored some extra sunscreen! The AZT finally leaves the road for single track and we had 8.3 miles to hwy 87 which just happened to be the location of our cache thanks to Kathy and Jackie who dropped us much needed resupply. By now it was dark so we grabbed the cache and looked for the nearest flat spot for camp.

Day 4 - 19.96 miles 4,764 AEG

A bit later start this morning but we needed the extra rest after long miles the day before. The first 5 miles of this section is old road so easy walking. Eventually it drops into a canyon on Little Saddle trail with the first water of the day at about 6 miles. Good pools and flow for about 3/4 mile. From there we gained significant AEG to Mormon Grove trail junction but after that there is a fast 4 mile section that traverses past Saddle Mtn. Next stop we dropped into McFarland Canyon and took a break. Good flow in McFarland with pools for about 1/2 mile before the trail leaves the canyon. From there trail gains about 1000 feet going over to Thicket Spring area. Didn't see any water at Thicket but we really didn't look around that much. Then it was up to the Peeley TH turn off where said goodbye to FOTG. He continued up the AZT Mazatzal Divide trail and I headed for the trail head. It was great and tough 4 days of hiking for sure...thanks FOTG!

Coordinating with Kathy she was my pickup on Peeley road but I walked some of the road until we met part way down. Interestingly a month ago on Feb 13th we did a Deer Creek hike and had to walk this same section of road but it was covered with 8 inches of snow and 15 to 20 trees were laying across the road. So they did a nice job removing all the downfall.
Culture
Culture
Intrepid Back Shot
Meteorology
Meteorology
Sunrise
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
poppies, lupine, glow mallow, Indian paintbrush

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Pine Creek at Reavis Gap #117 Light flow Light flow
light flow and small pools

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Reavis Creek at Fireline #118 Medium flow Medium flow
multiple pools

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Reavis Creek at Gap Trail #117 Light flow Light flow
good flow and small pools

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Reavis Saddle Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
clear water in the spring area

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Reavis Trail Canyon Light flow Light flow
light flow and small pools

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Walnut Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
good clear water at the spring source
_____________________
4 archives
average hiking speed 1.99 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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