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E Cross L Trail #281 - 7 members in 7 triplogs have rated this an average 3.4 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Jul 18 2015
chumley
avatar

 Guides 75
 Routes 667
 Photos 13,221
 Triplogs 1,421

46 male
 Joined Sep 18 2002
 Tempe, AZ
Collins Venezia Senator ExL Loop, AZ 
Collins Venezia Senator ExL Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jul 18 2015
chumley
Hiking16.34 Miles 3,403 AEG
Hiking16.34 Miles   7 Hrs   28 Mns   2.81 mph
3,403 ft AEG   1 Hour   39 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners partners
John9L
The_Eagle
Bruce hadn't hiked the 1.5 mile Venezia trail and somehow we hiked 17 miles looking for it.

It was humid, but generally pleasant, mostly cloudy, and rain free. 9L got caught up in the poison ivy, and missed the waterfalls and swimming hole at the spring.

After a few detours we decided to cut a corner off the top of the route, and it resulted in a short but steep bushwhack from the top of Collins down to the Senator Highway. It wasn't at all prickly, so it was a worthwhile shortcut.

Venezia is a great trail and especially nice in cloudy or cooler weather. E Cross L is overgrown but can be followed if attentive. The GPS track helps. Collins is a pleasure. The road hike is great on Senator. Crooks Canyon is quite scenic. The hike on FR82 is not great, but the views make up for it. We missed the turn for 281, but once found, it was a really nice climb to the top of the ridge.

Notes: the Elouise Trail #306 doesn't exist ... at least if it does it's on well-marked private property. Don't plan a trip on that one.
HAZ lists the E Cross L Trail. One sign has it as E & L. The sign near Palace Station has it as E+L. So there's that.
Fauna
Fauna
Teva
Named place
Named place
E Cross L Spring Palace Station
_____________________
Profound observer
Jul 18 2015
The_Eagle
avatar

 Guides 5
 Routes 792
 Photos 9,159
 Triplogs 1,080

63 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Crooks Canyon - Ash Creek Canyon Loop, AZ 
Crooks Canyon - Ash Creek Canyon Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jul 18 2015
The_Eagle
Hiking16.88 Miles 3,392 AEG
Hiking16.88 Miles   7 Hrs   29 Mns   2.74 mph
3,392 ft AEG   1 Hour   19 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
With a 70% chance of Rain, we were all ready to get soaked on the day. Only problem, Ma Nature just decided to crank up the humidity a bit. Chums wanted to try the area Joe and I had been to before and I wanted to click off the Venezia Trail and search south of Palace Station on FR82 and Crooks Canyon.

I showed the guys Palace Station, the Palace Station Cemetery and headed down tree covered Crooks Canyon. Nice area w/ lots of camping opportunities. I still need to head further south in the future. The Elouise Mine area was posted "No Tresspassing", but it didn't appear that anyone had driven up there in quite some time.

We made a turn to the west, past the Bodie Mine area. At this point we were climbing and out of the trees, so none of us felt the urge to hike down to the area.

After 9L had us pass up the Collins Trail, we back tracked to get back on this single track. This short trail dead ends and the E Cross L Cabin Area and the E Cross L Trail. We searched around the shed and the the Cabin area. Found some old stone walls, steps and what appeared to be a pile of old lumber from the old torn down cabin. a newer cabin from the 60's (in rough shape, but has seen some use in the past 5 of years) stands just west of the pile.

Up the E Cross L now, it climbs steadily for 3 miles, up 1300', to an old forest road. Once at the top, we opted to cut a couple of road miles off by scrambling down a "steepish" slope to the Senator.

The Venezia trail does offer some pretty views as it climbs 400' up from the Senator to meet the E Cross L Trail. Anyone hiking the E Cross L trail, should either hike it, ending at the TH by Palace Station, or take the official GPS Track. The lower sections are overgrown and it's easy to see where Joe and I got offtrack last time here.

Temps for the most part were 75 - 80 with scattered clouds, so it made it real nice for hiking. Good company, good conversation, fun times.

Thanks for driving Mr. Chums
Named place
Named place
E Cross L Spring
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max E Cross L Spring Dripping Dripping
Small amount of water in the bucket. There are beter choices in Ash Creek.

dry Spence Spring Dry Dry
Nothing in the spring box. Pools in Crooks creek though.

dry Starlight Canyon Dry Dry
Dry at the Senator Highway

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max White Well 26-50% full 26-50% full
Water in the well, as well as trash from idiots.
Crooks Creek offers plenty of filtering opportunities
_____________________
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
Jul 18 2015
John9L
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 Guides 6
 Routes 170
 Photos 4,848
 Triplogs 1,619

male
 Joined Mar 12 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
Collins Venezia Senator ExL Loop, AZ 
Collins Venezia Senator ExL Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jul 18 2015
John9L
Hiking16.34 Miles 3,403 AEG
Hiking16.34 Miles   7 Hrs   28 Mns   2.81 mph
3,403 ft AEG   1 Hour   39 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Partners partners
chumley
The_Eagle
I got together with Chumley and The Eagle for a hike in the Bradshaws. We drove up on Saturday morning and started hiking making a clockwise loop. The first few miles were along road and went by fairly quickly. We explored some of the features of the area and continued our hike. We eventually left the road and hiked through a wooded section. There were some cool old buildings along the way. It must have been a cool place to live back in the day. This was a nice hike and I really enjoyed the historical aspect of this area.
_____________________
Aug 02 2014
The_Eagle
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 Guides 5
 Routes 792
 Photos 9,159
 Triplogs 1,080

63 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
E Cross L #281 Loop w/ Palace Station Cem., AZ 
E Cross L #281 Loop w/ Palace Station Cem., AZ
 
Hiking avatar Aug 02 2014
The_Eagle
Hiking12.20 Miles 2,582 AEG
Hiking12.20 Miles   5 Hrs   45 Mns   2.44 mph
2,582 ft AEG      45 Mns Break16 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Partners partners
joebartels
Hike one of two on the day.

Exploring new areas in the Bradshaw's, and this one was a gem!

Access from Mayer is on super smooth and recently graded FR67 for 12 miles to get to the Senator Highway intersection (FR52). Then 4 miles on the Senator Highway to get to the historic Palace Station area was high clearance.

Forecast for the day was 70's with a 90% chance of rain.

I'd done some sleuthing prior to the hike to get some ideas on what was around the area.

Plans for the day was to Check Out
:next: 2 new seldom traveled trails, under tree canopy.
:next: Historic Palace Station
:next: Palace Station Cemetery
:next: What appeared to be 2 cabins on Satellite and Topo.
:next: Ruins of the Venezia Town & Mil area and 2 more graves.

We parked by Palace Station, just off the road, not knowing there was parking for 10+ cars at the TH.

We checked out the Palace Cemetery area first and then from the exterior, the Palace Station building, one of the oldest in the state (1877). Access is not allowed and is now a Forest Service building and is manned.

The worst trail finding all day long, was close to the South Eastern TH. This goes through a burn zone from a fire in 2007 or 2008. After this, it was clear sailing with no trail finding issues. The trail is undercover for most of the way. There are remnants of bygone mining days along the way. We passed an old cast iron stove and other household items. A car or mining implement frame with a straight six engine was nearby.

We headed down the Collins #282 for a bit to check out the first of two structures I'd seen on Satellite. It appeared to be an old storage building. There were other building footings in the area.
:next: http://youtu.be/y3X9v5dtiyk

Next we mad the turn and headed toward the northern TH. We stopped and checked out the other building which appeared to be Mobile home like in size and shape, with no indications that it'd been one.

It seems like almost all the hikes I've been on recently was loaded with sign of bear. This hike had the occasional deer prints and the squirrels were quite active, but that was about it. So I was shocked when Joe yells (no too loud) BEAR!. Up on the hillside, and climbing swiftly, was a Momma and her cub, probably 75 yards away. I was only able to get off 1 discernible photo. But finally, my first bear sighting while hiking!

We continued up the incline to the Northern TH. Beautiful forest everywhere.

We hopped on FS70 :next: 81 :next: FR52B :next: FR52. Next stop the Venenzia townsite ruins.

We got rained on just a bit on the walk and then while at the Site, the sky opened up and lightning crackled around us. Didn't look too long for the other two graves in the area and also cancelled the other trail we were going to go on. It would have taken us up higher (closer to the Lightning). Should have gone because 10 minutes later we walked out of the storm and the road was even dry. Oh well, another reason to go back.

I really enjoyed this trail... and the Bear encounter made it even more memorable!
Fauna
Fauna
Black Bear
Named place
Named place
E Cross L Spring

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max White Well 1-25% full 1-25% full
Water could be seen at the bottom. Not sure how deep.
_____________________
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
Aug 02 2014
joebartels
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 Guides 213
 Routes 824
 Photos 10,865
 Triplogs 4,280

49 male
 Joined Nov 20 1996
 Phoenix, AZ
E Cross L #281 Loop w/ Palace Station Cem., AZ 
E Cross L #281 Loop w/ Palace Station Cem., AZ
 
Hiking avatar Aug 02 2014
joebartels
Hiking12.20 Miles 2,582 AEG
Hiking12.20 Miles   5 Hrs   45 Mns   2.44 mph
2,582 ft AEG      45 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners partners
The_Eagle
Bruce covered it well. I'll add this was better than anticipated, lots of tree cover. Boxelders lead to Blue Spruce... need I say more
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Hike Arizona it ROCKS!
Jul 12 2010
PrestonSands
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 Guides 168
 Routes 149
 Photos 5,534
 Triplogs 1,317

42 male
 Joined Apr 12 2004
 Oro Valley, AZ
E Cross L Trail #281Prescott, AZ
Prescott, AZ
Hiking avatar Jul 12 2010
PrestonSands
Hiking7.50 Miles 1,800 AEG
Hiking7.50 Miles
1,800 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
Billiam
ryan321
Tom Sands
The Sands family hike-athon continued on Monday. With a forecasted high of 95 in Prescott, I knew it was going to be hot!!! My dad, my uncle Bill, my brother Ryan, and I headed into the Bradshaws. Ryan, who had recently received his learner's permit, was faced with passing both a propane tanker truck and an 18 wheeler tractor trailer on the steep, one lane Senator Highway. He succeeds.

A bit later, we locate the trailhead, park, and begin the short hike along FR 70 to the E Cross L Trailhead. It is quite warm, and humid. We descend into the scenic confines of Ash Creek Canyon through a forest of ponderosa and gambel oak, spotting a few deer along the way. Soon the lush character of the creek bottom begins to show. Huge thickets of healthy lupines and columbines carpet the creek bed, which itself has a gentle flow of water and a few little pools. Very pretty! I dunk my shirt in the creek to cool off, and we break for lunch in the shade of ponderosas. Continuing on, we pass an old bathtub. We sit inside it for a photo op. The trail reaches the end of the Ash Creek stretch near an old barn, which we stop to investigate. It's hot now, at 90+ degrees, and we begin a 1000 foot, mostly shadeless climb to a saddle on Ash Creek Ridge, where the unmarked Venezia Trail joins the E Cross L.

From the saddle, we decide to follow Ash Creek Ridge back to our car, following the steep and rough route of Forest Road 70 (which no longer connects with the saddle, as the Forest Service blocked the lower end of the road with bulldozer mounds). The temps ease up on Ash Creek Ridge, and we enjoy fine views of the eastern and southern Bradshaws from breaks in the forest. We pass plenty of bluish tinged white firs as we approach our car in the soft, late afternoon light. Back in Prescott, I buy us a round of Gatorades.

Our hike was tough due to the July heat, but all in all, it was a great hike on a very scenic and well maintained trail. I'll likely do it again.
Culture
Culture
Wooden Dwelling
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
_____________________
"I'm going for a coffee, but you never know when a hike might break out." -Jim Gaffigan
Jul 15 2009
MEWhiteman
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 Guides 40
 Routes 91
 Photos 790
 Triplogs 351

75 male
 Joined Dec 24 2005
 Phoenix, AZ
E Cross L Trail #281Prescott, AZ
Prescott, AZ
Hiking avatar Jul 15 2009
MEWhiteman
Hiking4.60 Miles 995 AEG
Hiking4.60 Miles   2 Hrs   45 Mns   1.67 mph
995 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
We planned to hike Trail #281 according to Abe's description. However, when we hiked it in July 2009, the trail from FR52 to the junction with #381 and FR70 on the ridge was extremely difficult to find and follow. The trailhead was fine, but the trail became very overgrown with thorny brush. We couldn't see the trail on the ground due to the brush and a past fire and the ribbons which were noticeable early on the hike mostly disappeared. I would not recommend this part of the hike until trail work has been done.

At this point we decided to change our plan and hiked out to FR52 via Trail #381, the Venezia Trail, and then back to the car via FR52. This made a nice 4.5 mile loop. Trail #381 was much cleaner and easier to follow and was obviously more frequently used by hikers and bikers. For those wanting to do the E Cross L loop as Abe describes, I'd recommend using trail #381 to reach Ash Creek Ridge. There is limited parking though.

Getting to the trailhead was an adventure too. We came up from Phoenix and took County Rt 177 from Mayer to Goodwin, then FR52 to the trailhead which appeared to be shortest in distance for us. It was about 14.8 miles on unpaved road, with the section between Goodwin and the trail being especially rough. A high clearance 4WD is needed on this latter section. It took us 1.5 hours from Mayer. We returned via Prescott, and the route to/from Prescott, Senator Highway/FR52, is better (though longer for hikers from the Valley). It is only 9.4 miles unpaved and the rough sections weren't as bad as the southern route.
_____________________
average hiking speed 2.48 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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