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Burro Flats Loop - 11 members in 18 triplogs have rated this an average 2.8 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Nov 07 2020
GrangerGuy
avatar

 Routes 3
 Photos 19
 Triplogs 5

64 male
 Joined Dec 26 2018
 Phoenix, AZ
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 07 2020
GrangerGuy
Hiking6.70 Miles 788 AEG
Hiking6.70 Miles   3 Hrs   40 Mns   2.68 mph
788 ft AEG   1 Hour   10 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Driving:
I took the route to the Burro Flats Trailhead via Castle Hot Springs Road from Morristown. That is a great road until the last 3.4 miles, where you turn off Castle Hot Springs main road onto Cedar Basin Road. The spur to the trail is genuinely 4WD. I would not recommend it in even a high clearance AWD vehicle. Castle Hot Springs Road via Castle Hot Springs itself is not bad either. Castle Hot Springs has recently re-opened as a $1000/night premium resort. Looked pretty popular when I drove by a couple weeks ago. Departing, just as I got back to the main Castle Hot Springs Road, I encountered a caravan of 15-20 ORVs that were headed onto the 4WD road. Except for them, the road was little used today.

If you are planning to park at Horse Creek Trailhead, the last little spur road to the trailhead is quite rough, but there are a couple of parking spots on the grass just past it and off the main road. The spur road to the Horse Creek Trailhead is easy to miss. Heading south, if you get to the top of the rise where there is a piece of galvanized drain pipe, you have gone too far.

Weather:
Today (11/7/20) is much more sunny than I expected, with clear blue skies. There was forecast for a chance of showers, and wind gusts to 20 MPH. The wind definitely came up as predicted, and the clouds came and went, but no rain.

Wildlife:
I have flushed many flocks of doves while hiking. At 3.3 miles, I heard a herd of animals. Hoping to spot several burros, I looked in all directions. Sadly, it was just cattle. I did not see any burros today. As I was driving out, I had to stop and wait for a skunk who was ambling across the 4WD road.

The Trail:
I signed the trail register and took a picture of it, and headed on my way. It is easy to miss the trail at the crossing of the first wash, just a few yards in. As you enter the wash, cross it. Don't follow it up. There really are paths everywhere. You have to pay attention to the GPS route so you don't get lost. There are cairns for the first couple miles, but not always where you need them, and not always clear.

This trail is marked as a jeep trail on the old USGS map, but it has not been one for many years. There is a large flat area at 0.8 mi that could be good for camping but for all the cattle dung. The trail is extremely gentle, no serious ups or downs. It is a little rocky. The first couple miles of trail are generally following the wash downstream. There are occasional prickly pear plants that attempted to fruit, but with this year's draught, it looks like it never fully ripened.

As you get away from the road, it becomes more "wildernsey". This is an amazing and spectacular, and secret place. Definitely around 1.6-2.0 miles is the most beautiful, awesome area of the loop. The trail crosses the wash frequently, but almost never follows in the wash itself.

At 2 miles, the trail heads down into the little canyon that hosts Burro Spring. About 100-200 yards before where the spring is marked, there is a little stream entering from the right, dry. This may be the outlet to the actual spring. When you get to the spot in the trail just below the marked spring, there is no sign of recent water.

The rocks here make amazing pictures, especially if you get here before the sun comes up over the ridge. Don't forget to look right and left for the beautiful cliffs. The biggest thing slowing you down on this trail is the catclaw, which is fierce in the section from about 1.5 to 2.4 miles.

Once through the canyon, the trail opens up, and the catclaw is much easier to dodge. While there is dung everywhere, it is mostly cattle, with some burro.

At 2.4 miles, there is a campsite. No water today, and quite a lot of dung. It appears the official trail makes a sharp left here, although the GPS track on the HAZ page continues straight down to a campsites and water hole. I stuck to the main trail and cut off a little of the loop marked on the web page. At 2.9 miles, there is an intersection where someone’s route on the HAZ page comes up the wash from the right. It looks like a serious bushwhack, though. There are campsites here and less dung. Again, around 3.5 miles, the prickly pear have tried to fruit, unsuccessfully. There is quite a lot of fruit, but it never matured.

At 3.6 miles, trail finding becomes difficult. There is a trail veering off to the right, which will ultimately head down to Garfias Wash and Hells Canyon Spring. The loop continues left. The trail is faint, and there are no cairns. You want to climb up to the canyon to your left if you are taking the Burro Flats Loop.

At 3.8 miles, there are some nice sitting rocks, a great place to break for lunch and take in the entire valley and the rocks around it. At 3.9 miles the trail suddenly and unexpectedly turns left into Horse Creek. One moment you are climbing a traverse, the next moment you are in the canyon. Shortly after passing through the remains of a barbed wire fence, the trail comes to the wash. This is one of the few places the trail follows the wash for any distance.

The crushed and split remains of the Horse Spring spring box are depressing at first, not a good sign. But just up the wash from the remains, are a couple of tiny, clear pools, with a couple of quarts in them. And further up there is a big pool. Some of it is pretty stomped by the cattle. It is flowing slowly and deep. Certainly filterable and drinkable. The box, in the middle of the wash, must have been wiped out in a summer monsoon once.

Climbing from the spring, the trail becomes the remains of a road, which must have been used for maintaining the spring box before this was wilderness. Usually, I don't like walking two-tracks, but after fighting the catclaw and dodging the cholla, it is preferable. At this point you also realize that the car is parked at the high point of this trip, and it is all uphill back to it. I don't particularly like such trails. I was raised on trails that are uphill heading into the wilderness, and downhill returning to the car.

At 4.7 miles, just when you think you are going to go over a saddle, the trail takes a sharp left turn, and takes aim for a different saddle. Looking at the map, it is clear when you go over this saddle, you will see the road. Indeed, as you head up over the rise, you are at the wilderness boundary, with an additional register. Just a long 1/2 mi walk up the road to the car from here.

I completed 5.85 miles in 3.34 hours, with no mishaps.

dry Burro Spring Dry Dry
No sign of water in this area.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Horse Spring Dripping Dripping
Plenty of water. Surprising for this time of year. I think you can find areas upstream of where the cows have been stomping.
Jan 19 2019
joebartels
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 Guides 241
 Routes 830
 Photos 11,838
 Triplogs 4,679

51 male
 Joined Nov 20 1996
 Phoenix, AZ
Garfias - Horse Creek - Burro Flat Loop, AZ 
Garfias - Horse Creek - Burro Flat Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 19 2019
joebartels
Hiking12.14 Miles 1,804 AEG
Hiking12.14 Miles   6 Hrs   58 Mns   2.07 mph
1,804 ft AEG   1 Hour   6 Mns Break6 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Route Scout GPS Route Recorded on Route Scout View
First west side approach for myself into the Hells Canyon Wilderness. The short jeep-trail road to Horse Creek trailhead has fine pea sized gravel that might challenge a motion shy novice. I've changed a couple trailheads over here from
FR / Jeep Road - Car possible when dry
to
High Clearance possible when dry
Experienced won't have trouble. That said most of the western drive and the majority of this hike had no cell reception... unless guaranteed dry, stay out without 4WD is the wise choice

Cedar Basin loaded with a few gnarly junipers is an interesting low hilly landscape.

Decked out in summer gear with a forecast of 70 I paid the freezer piper until we found sun at 9am : (
Someday I'll step up my emoji presence like the young guns Denny & Preston =)

Garfias is a cool roll. We almost connected to a previous trip.
Horse Creek is easier. Less immediate geology, nice low mountains surround. Aka block the friggen sun!
3125, 3184 & 3235 look worthy as a modified metal route in mind now.
Burro Flats was okay.
Jeep road back included a dozen+ convoy atvs.

Fanny packed like most cooler hikes now. Carried 68oz h20, consumed 38oz. Sub 50 temps Bruce's back was sweating an outline to his pack.

We drove out on the East. Great shape, no sand/gavel issues, sedan access all the way to the resort.
Named place
Named place
Burro Flats Horse Spring
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
as in very light
the entire hike was over 2400 ft elevation... maybe too cold for a couple more weeks
_____________________
- joe
Jan 19 2019
The_Eagle
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 Guides 7
 Routes 798
 Photos 9,771
 Triplogs 1,337

64 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Garfias - Horse Creek - Burro Flat Loop, AZ 
Garfias - Horse Creek - Burro Flat Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 19 2019
The_Eagle
Hiking12.12 Miles 2,084 AEG
Hiking12.12 Miles   6 Hrs   58 Mns   1.99 mph
2,084 ft AEG      53 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
The drive to the northernmost BLM TH (Garfias Wash Trailhead) can be made by a HC 2x4 Vehicle.

We did a CW loop, started in the 30's in Garfias Wash. There was frost on the rocks in the Wash (or snow as Jow called it).

We sampled a bit of Hell Canyon until retreating out to Horse Creek.... Joe was on a mission to find sun. We gather back up in the area on the well (First Sunny area) and hit Horse Spring to check it out. Next we turned to the SE to head across Burro Flats, complete with 4 Burros.

For me, the best part of this hike is in the Burro Spring Area. Cool geology with Peak 3465 being right there.

I'd drawn this track up years ago, in an attempt to sample what we'd done so far today, but mainly get up to Mills benchmark, Frustrum 18 and finally strike Pikes Peak (AZ) off my list. We made it off trail just short of halfway there distance wise, but the amount of remaining side hill walking would not have been conducive to my ankle. Karl and I sampled Peak 3019 while we were there and It'll have to be another day.

We passed through the other 2 BLM TH's out here on the way back. Burro Spring and Horse Creek.

The philosophical discussions going on all day between Joe and Karl kept me on my toes. By the end of the day, with all the facts presented to Joe, Karl had Joe believing he was in new person. Scary that one man can adjust another mans outlook, that quickly. I believe the generous presentation of Karl's favorite hiking snack food to Joe, was the turning point in making him turn a new corner in his life.

Only a few Poppies seen.

No Yellow Billed Sap Suckers were seen on the day.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Burro Spring Dripping Dripping
Pools in the area

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Horse Creek Pools to trickle Pools to trickle

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Horse Creek Tank 51-75% full 51-75% full
Muddy, Muddy, Muddy

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Horse Spring Dripping Dripping
Pools in the area also plenty of sign of Bovine activity. Filter wisely
_____________________
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
Jan 19 2019
BiFrost
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 Guides 4
 Routes 356
 Photos 7,656
 Triplogs 911

51 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Garfias - Horse Creek - Burro Flat Loop, AZ 
Garfias - Horse Creek - Burro Flat Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 19 2019
BiFrost
Hiking12.76 Miles 2,084 AEG
Hiking12.76 Miles   6 Hrs   58 Mns   2.10 mph
2,084 ft AEG      53 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
First time in this area but Bruce had done several hikes here before so I was along for the ride. Interesting canyon starting out in Garfias Wash for the first couple of miles. Hell Canyon was a worthy journey eventually turning around at a deep pool and heading back to Horse Creek.

Eventually we picked up the trail by Horse Creek Spring and followed that through Burro Flat. As Bruce mentioned we saw several burros at a distance. We continued through a nice area around Burro Spring of saguaros and cholla over to some off trail. Bruce had drawn up a route to Pikes Peak but that turned out to be a peak to far. We ended up doing Peak 3019 on the topo instead which turned out well having some pretty nice views of it's own.

We made it back to trail and had lunch on wide saddle. From there we continued past 2 trailheads Burro Spring and Horse Creek on the way back to Garfias Wash. Good hike...much more to do in the area.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
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2 archives
Feb 11 2018
thirstylizard
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 Routes 2
 Photos 400
 Triplogs 32

female
 Joined Apr 27 2015
 cave creek, az
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 11 2018
thirstylizard
Hiking6.70 Miles 788 AEG
Hiking6.70 Miles
788 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
A friend wanted a hike where her Jeep would get dirty so I went straight to HAZ and found a few that might work. She picked this one and it did the job. We took the “sedan” route into the hike and drove out Castle Hot Springs Road at first light.

Arrived at the Horse Spring trailhead at 8:30a. Decided to do the loop clock wise from this point. Horse Spring was running at a little more than a trickle which made for a nice gathering spot for a few hummingbirds-- a few pools of water down stream too.

On this side of the loop, watch for the tree ties to get you where you need to be—otherwise you may find yourself grazing with some of the cattle. Not sure if we actually followed the actual trail or made a short cut somewhere around the "Burro Flats" area. The downloaded track showed an jag to the east, but we smoothed that jag on what we assumed was the trail and eventually reconnected to the downloaded route.

Saw some nifty geological views and a glimpse of Lake Pleasant before hitting the scenic Burro Spring pass. Great to see Big Jim Peak, 3465 from this angle. Climbed it last year. What goes around, comes around. Did not see water present in Burro Spring, but did not investigate more than the obvious.

From Burro Spring to Horse Creek Tank, tree ties fade and cairns grow and GROW. Overly unnecessary and indulgent and perhaps even view impeding. Makes one wonder if there wasn't a BLM field class in cairn building. Just shy of Sedona-level, which is something to be said.

Some water in the tank. Saw more Black-tailed jackrabbits than I have seen in a while.

Took the Morgan City Wash drive for the return trip which was easy enough considering this year's dry conditions and of course, we had a jeep. Another great day in Hell(s) Canyon Wilderness.
Fauna
Fauna
Wild Burro
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation None
Compared a to the day hike from last year (Governor's Peak) and could not believe the difference from last year. A few ground sprouts. We will have to look very low to the ground to see anything this year.

dry Burro Spring Dry Dry
didn't see anything

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Horse Creek Tank 26-50% full 26-50% full
low, but still had water

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Horse Spring Dripping Dripping
_____________________
Mar 25 2017
Nightstalker
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 Routes 86
 Photos 5,737
 Triplogs 890

52 male
 Joined Apr 25 2011
 Goodyear, AZ
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 25 2017
Nightstalker
Hiking5.90 Miles 913 AEG
Hiking5.90 Miles   3 Hrs   2 Mns   2.25 mph
913 ft AEG      25 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 no routes
Partners none no partners
Had a great hike on Walkin Jim trail last week and returned to the Hells Canyon Wilderness to enjoy the wild flowers. Saw a big pack of burros right off Castle Hot Springs road near the Walkin Jim trailhead on the way in this morning. Followed Castle Hot Springs Road out to Cedar Basin to the Burro Springs trailhead. Lots of water crisscrossing the road near Castle Hot Springs resort. Also noticed some new construction going on at the resort. Driving Cedar Basin is the toughest part of getting to this trailhead. High clearance required! Travel time from Carefree Highway to the trailhead was a little over 60 minutes in my Wrangler. 44 degrees and overcast start to the hike this morning. I certainly don't think this loop sees many hikers, but the log book was full of UTV'ers that felt the need to sign in at the wilderness boundary. Today we did the loop counter clock wise, last time I did the loop clock wise, so it was a nice change of pace. Waist deep wild flowers through most of the hike. Lots of thorn wielding plants encroaching the trail at spots. Definitely a great choice for the season. We left the wilderness and drove the Jeep south on Cedar Basin and Morgan City Wash back to Castle Hot Springs road. This route probably cut 10 to 15 minutes off the travel time. Morgan City Wash was definitely a treat and had running water at spots.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Extreme
_____________________
Jan 24 2015
The_Eagle
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 Guides 7
 Routes 798
 Photos 9,771
 Triplogs 1,337

64 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Peak 3465 Hiero Mtns - Morgan City Wash Loop, AZ 
Peak 3465 Hiero Mtns - Morgan City Wash Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 24 2015
The_Eagle
Hiking19.89 Miles 3,013 AEG
Hiking19.89 Miles   9 Hrs   45 Mns   2.34 mph
3,013 ft AEG   1 Hour   15 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Still dark, the day started off to a brisk and breezy 35 degrees. We covered the 4 miles to the "Big Jim Trail", quickly to warm up. From here you climb +2200' to the summit in less than 2 miles. This is the first time since the end of 2010, that I've done this hike. Back then, there was no defined trail from the end of the "Big Jim Trail" to the top. This has been getting noticeable traffic and has been flagged in spots.

The view from the top is still one of the best in the area. It took a while to re-find the 1902 inscription, but Joe spotted it.

The next person up, should bring a new summit container and log pad. The past records are getting trashed. It was too fragile to take out of the jar.

We picked a route down the backside that was slow going, but not too bad. We luckily ran into the "Burro Flats Loop Trail", saving us some brush fighting. We bailed on target two for the day and set our sites for the Morgan City Wash. The 4.5 miles in the wash drug on, but were easy miles.

On the way we stopped at the Bog Ranch area, right off the wash. This area is a disgrace with all the shot up stuff and shell casings everywhere.

We got out of the wash at Tule Spring and started the cross-country burro trail trek to meet up with the "Walking Jim Trail" and the truck.

Another fine day in the Hieroglyphic Mountains, with still some unfinished business.
Fauna
Fauna
Teva Wild Burro
Culture
Culture
Inscriptions
Named place
Named place
Pikes Peak Tule Spring

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Tule Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Catchment was full and pipe was dripping clear water

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Walkin' Jim Spring Dripping Dripping
There was some pooling in the area
_____________________
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
Jan 24 2015
joebartels
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 Guides 241
 Routes 830
 Photos 11,838
 Triplogs 4,679

51 male
 Joined Nov 20 1996
 Phoenix, AZ
Peak 3465 Hiero Mtns - Morgan City Wash Loop, AZ 
Peak 3465 Hiero Mtns - Morgan City Wash Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 24 2015
joebartels
Hiking18.95 Miles 3,034 AEG
Hiking18.95 Miles   9 Hrs   43 Mns   2.24 mph
3,034 ft AEG   1 Hour   15 Mns Break12 LBS Pack
 
no photosets
1st trip
Returned after a short sampler of Cottonwood Creek in 2007. A healthy forest of saguaros offers photogenic sun events on the horizon. Peak 3465 steals the show protected by waves of black jumbled rock on the ascent. Gnarly lichen accents demand your attention. Distant views are pleasing. My favorite being the Sierra Estrella range standing proud in the sonoran sea of wannabee peaks.

A large balance of this loop was nice yet forgettable after Peak 3465. We stumbled upon old jeep trails that now look to be cattle fairways. Anti cairnopelli would be no match for a few of the route guidance markers along the way. We only witnessed signs of cattle. The patties now in a styrofoam consistency may indicate winter absence?

We saw two burros and heard another pack out of sight. Two inch disintegrating hay bundles throughout with concentrated piles on occasion suggests a large presence.

Finishing up on the southern Walkin' Jim Loop offered the most stunning views of the day. Lake Pleasant sings on the horizon. Panoramic views sweep through downtown Phoenix with its tiny skyscrapers offering wow scalism.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Tule Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Immediate area looked dry. Looks to be piped to a tank in the creek. The tank was 2/3rds full with a healthy leak so it must be getting a good flow.
_____________________
- joe
Oct 05 2013
Nightstalker
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 Routes 86
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52 male
 Joined Apr 25 2011
 Goodyear, AZ
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 05 2013
Nightstalker
Hiking5.80 Miles 1,038 AEG
Hiking5.80 Miles   2 Hrs   22 Mns   2.95 mph
1,038 ft AEG      24 Mns Break6 LBS Pack
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Did this hike today with the 3H group. Excellent loop! Cedar Basin is definitely 4x4. We saw a very large group of javelina.
_____________________
Feb 22 2013
Owen
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 Routes 1
 Triplogs 2

46 male
 Joined May 08 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 22 2013
Owen
Hiking5.75 Miles
Hiking5.75 Miles   24 Hrs      0.24 mph
45 LBS Pack
 
no photosets
1st trip
Partners none no partners
I was a little hesitant after reading some of the previous posts be we decided to make the trek anyway. The trailheads were well marked and easy to find. We took the Morgan City Wash (4WD) from Carefree Highway all the way up to the trailheads and then went out and around Castle Hot Springs Road after we were done.
I have gps tracks for both if anyone is interested.
My wife and I, our four kids and dog all made the trek. We started at the Horse Spring trailhead and went clockwise around to the Burro Springs Trailhead. We backpacked in and planned to stay one night. We got a late start and chose the first flat spot we found about a half mile past horse spring to camp.
I marked several other possible campsites on the gps map. The best one in my opinion is on a saddle with great views of the surrounding peaks and canyons.
Horse Spring had some pretty murky puddles of water near an overturned water trough.
Burro Spring had some very small water holes but i guess they were more from the recent rain than the spring. I didn't see any sign of the actual spring but this would be a great area to picnic. Lots of trees and rock overhangs created very cool, shady areas.
We also found a good-sized water pool below the treed area in the SE corner of the loop.
Any water would definitely need filtered before drinking.
The trail was clear in areas and disappeared in others. Given the shape of the canyons, you just had to keep on course and would usually find the trail again. We used a gps also.
This area is magnificent. I've been on the OHV trails around the area a lot without ever realizing how beautiful this wilderness area is. This area seems to be a grazing area for cows and though we didn't see any they left their mark EVERYWHERE.
Overall a very good trip though.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Burro Spring Dripping Dripping
I didn't actually find a spring. Only very small pools of water in the wash bottom. Relatively clear but difinitely would need filtered. Could have also been rain water remnants as there was rain in the area within last week.
found a larger pool of water (hot tub size) below a grouping of large trees about 1/2 miles NE of Burro Springs.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Horse Creek Tank 76-100% full 76-100% full
big stock tank.
lots of water

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Horse Spring Dripping Dripping
I only say dripping because there was water there in very small pools though it was very murky.
could probably filter in dire circumstance but i think i would pass otherwise.
I did not see anything flowing at all
_____________________
Feb 04 2011
aleahsato
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 Triplogs 6

47 female
 Joined Sep 21 2010
 Phoenix, AZ
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 04 2011
aleahsato
Hiking6.70 Miles 788 AEG
Hiking6.70 Miles
788 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
Mar 05 2010
scottfyfe
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 Photos 214
 Triplogs 59

44 male
 Joined Nov 02 2006
 Sabattus, Maine
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 05 2010
scottfyfe
Hiking6.70 Miles 788 AEG
Hiking6.70 Miles
788 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
This hike is well marked and is actually well maintained considering how hard it is to get out to the trail head. I think all the rain we got has made theses roads much less passable then in previous years. Had a great time! A few little water holes made this hike a bit more interesting but they would probably be non existent most of the time. Quite a few interesting rock formations. I did come across a wild burro. He wasn't very happy to see me and made that known with his loud noise making. Castle Hot Springs road was in bad shape and had lots of deep flowing water. Is it just me or is the Castle Hot springs resort a creepy looking place? It's kind of weird is so out of place.
Fauna
Fauna
Dog
_____________________
Dec 26 2009
desert_boonie
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 Guides 2
 Photos 1,691
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40 male
 Joined Aug 05 2004
 Peoria, AZ
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 26 2009
desert_boonie
Hiking5.30 Miles 788 AEG
Hiking5.30 Miles   3 Hrs      1.77 mph
788 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Ragnarok
Just wanted to take some friends that try and hike to a remote area that is close by. Finding the road was the most difficult part of the day by which at the end of it my friend Mike and I moved a down road sign to the Castle Hot Springs Rd. so you will be able to see the turnoff. It is 7.2 miles from the white gate you pass through going by the old resort. Hopefully the marker will stay there as it tells you CB for Cedar Basin. Once on the road you will pass 3 TH markers the 3rd one being for the Burro Flats TH. The Burro Flats trail will connect to the Horse Spring Trail and make for a 4.4 mile hike if you go to the Horse Spring TH. We did and would have come back but decided to just hike the road back to the Jeep and shorten the day. Saw a group of 8 Burros and plenty of cows marking the land the best they could. The small rugged peaks are very tempting and I guess i'll have to go back and knock them out soon. All in all a great day with a nice off roading adventure. The Cedar Basin road should not be attempted in a car, high clearance is what you will need in a few spots.
_____________________
"Never Satisfied"
Dec 26 2009
Ragnarok
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 Photos 27
 Triplogs 24

33 male
 Joined Jan 05 2010
 Glendale,AZ
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 26 2009
Ragnarok
Hiking6.70 Miles 788 AEG
Hiking6.70 Miles
788 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Pretty easy hike. Some good views of Lake Pleasant and the Bradshaw Mt.
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Nov 25 2009
Randal_Schulhauser
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 Guides 71
 Routes 98
 Photos 9,967
 Triplogs 1,009

60 male
 Joined May 14 2003
 Ahwatukee, AZ
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 25 2009
Randal_Schulhauser
Hiking6.70 Miles 788 AEG
Hiking6.70 Miles   3 Hrs   30 Mns   1.91 mph
788 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Hell's Canyon Wilderness

OK, I was conflicted by the generally “negative” triplogs verses my curiosity to explore what is for me one of those “blackhole” areas on the map. Throw in a little bit of history with the landmark 1896 Castle Hot Springs Resort (see http://www.ghosttowns.com/states/az/cas ... rings.html ), frequent wild burro sightings, and a drive that’s included in a couple of my 4WD/Offroad guides – that tipped the balance in favour of satisfying my curiosity…


Took the day off work to create a 5-day Thanksgiving Weekend and headed out in the F-150 with Lynn and Skippy armed with the HAZ Hike Description for Burro Flats Loop. As we turn onto Castle Hot Springs Road you can’t help but notice the absence of traffic (in fact our only vehicle encounter was at about mile 20 when a yellow Toyota FJ passed in the opposite direction).

Nice views of Lake Pleasant (not a single boat in sight). Burro encounters in Garfias Wash and Castle Creek. An alien encounter with seemingly abandoned, yet immaculately manicured grounds of Castle Hot Springs Resort. Some curiously humble little working mines.

With some effort and a roll-of-the-dice, we found the Garfias Wash TH. Al_HikesAZ’s tip proved helpful;

“Bitter Creek crosses Castle Hot Springs Road about 7 miles beyond the Resort. Just past this point, head south on Cedar Basin Road. You will need 4WD for this stretch. About 2 miles south on Cedar Basin Road you will reach Garfias Wash and the parking area.”

We left the F-150 at the side of the road because there was no convincing evidence that this was the track to the TH – no signage, no recent tire tread marks in the dirt, in fact road grading had built up a bit of a barrier at the side of the road. The 2 mile trek to Garfias Wash TH was easy enough.

Back on the road we stopped at Picacho Wash. My GPS showed this as a 4WD trail following the wash. We followed the multiple tire tracks in the wash heading towards Cross F Spring. Was this the path towards Burro Flats TH? Nope! Appears we were on the 4WD path that takes you to the Burro Flats TH [N33deg 55.9980min W112deg 24.9540min] when we were at Garfias Wash TH [N33deg 57.3535min W112deg 25.4269min]… :wrt:

End verdict? Curiosity satisfied, probably not on any list for a redux though… Posted GPS track for Castle Hot Spings Road showing access to Garfias Wash TH. Appears that you continue further south along this same 4WD track to reach the Burro Flat TH. See http://hikearizona.com/location_g.php?GPS=7238
Fauna
Fauna
Donkey
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Nov 12 2006
Aprille
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 Photos 74
 Triplogs 45

47 female
 Joined Nov 04 2003
 Phoenix, AZ
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 12 2006
Aprille
Hiking6.00 Miles 788 AEG
Hiking6.00 Miles   2 Hrs      3.00 mph
788 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I would agree that this isn't worth it. You are on the Castle Springs Road for a while. When we thought we were at the road to get to the trailhead, we wern't. Ones never to waste a trip, we parked and created our own hike, using all the trails the dirt bikers use. Was a pretty area though. We did run into a group of Burros, which was pretty neat.
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Oct 28 2006
TerrySwicegood
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 Guides 5
 Photos 52
 Triplogs 4

75 male
 Joined Mar 05 2005
 Litchfield Park,
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 28 2006
TerrySwicegood
Hiking6.70 Miles 788 AEG
Hiking6.70 Miles
788 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Cline Prebble, Bob Bell & I did this loop on October 27th. The first thing you need to know is that the directions are off and confusing. From the T intersection above the Castle Hot Springs resort, it is about 4.5 miles to the jeep road where you turn left and begin the climb to the TH's. This is an obscure turn-off and easily missed because the road graders have made shoulders on both sides of the road. If you observe carefully, you will see a road paralleling the Castle Hot Springs road to your left, and if you see it, you've gone too far.

Second, the jeep road is definitely for high clearance vehicles only, and very slow going.

Third, the TH's are obscure and there are numerous turn-outs to your left. You actually have to get out of your car and walk 50 yards to see if this is a TH or just a turn-out.

Fourth, the area is remote and beautiful. We saw four burro's but the serenity and isolation is marred by lots of cattle and continuous cow pies on the trail.

Fifth, you should know that there is trail all the way around the loop. The route description doesn't indicate this. We parked in a turn-out about a half a mile beyond the Horse Springs TH and a half a mile short (south) of the Burro Springs We walked up the road, found the Burro Springs TH and headed on a gentle, obscure trail to Burro Springs. There was no water here in late October. From there the trail continues down the Burro Springs wash, then veers to the left and begins the hike on to Horse Springs across Burro Flats. There was a little water in Horse Springs, a nice shady spot for lunch. The trail continues along side the Horse Springs wash and climbs up and away from it, until it veers back left (pay attention, faint trail, no cairns here) toward the TH and the jeep road.

I can't truly recommend this hike because it is such a long and rugged drive for such a short hike. On the other hand, if you want a hike that is truly away from civilization and a slice of Sonoran serenity, this fits the bill.
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Sep 03 2006
dks
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 Photos 39
 Triplogs 7

58 female
 Joined Mar 24 2006
 Glendale, AZ
Burro Flats LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 03 2006
dks
Hiking6.70 Miles 788 AEG
Hiking6.70 Miles
788 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Don't waste your time going on this trip. The directions were off and by the time I arrived at Castle Hot Springs Resort, the road was closed. If I ever feel like in the Indiana Jones mood, I might try the second option for offroad trail, but I doubt it. Too bad. I was really looking forward to this hike! :cry:
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average hiking speed 2.3 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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