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Hoolie Bacon Trail #111 - 22 members in 66 triplogs have rated this an average 2.9 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Oct 20 2020
ScottHika
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 Routes 1
 Photos 52
 Triplogs 4

male
 Joined Sep 19 2020
 Phoenix
Tortilla TH to Tortilla WellPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 20 2020
ScottHika
Hiking13.21 Miles 1,608 AEG
Hiking13.21 Miles
1,608 ft AEG15 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Back to Tortilla TH or a few more things. I usually hike with goals in mind like things I am interested in. My first goal was to check the water level at the original Tortilla Well. This is the 1928 well at the Tortilla Ranch, not the water tank that everyone knows about. Tortilla was a cattle ranch (not a gold mine) so there is no reason for anybody to risk going down into shafts like this. If you were to fall in, there is little chance anyone would find your body for a really long time. As far as I can remember, the level is somewhat lower than before. I didn’t think to have a phone app that could measure the depth, but I estimate water level to be 25-40 feet down? The staining on the side of the walls shows that at one time it was quite a bit higher. It’s been a brutal summer and pretty dry fall thus far. In early days this was a shallow well.

My second plan was to locate the remains of the “First Windmill”. This is not the windmill at Peters also called the “Second Windmill” or upper windmill. I'm talking about the Fist Windmill (lower windmill), which stood above the 1928 well behind the iconic T Frames at the Tortilla ranch site. The last I remember it was around 2005 and the blades were off but tail attached. If anyone knows what happened to it or has photo after 2005, please post it. I couldn’t find any part of it except a mounting bracket.

My third task was to look into what’s going on with Night Hawk spring in Cedar Basin. The problem with water report during wet months is that it’s difficult to tell the difference between spring activity and normal runoff. I found no water anywhere during my trip to Night Hawk spring and surrounding area. There also is zero chance that spring-fed water would ever be in the lower spring box or in the upper spring box (the one with the 7-30-37 date on it). The reason is because the water transfer system has been severely compromised. There are a half dozen breaks in the lines running from the spring source (1/4 mile up the canyon) down to the boxes.

As far as I could tell, the “spring” has nothing but damp sand and no standing water. There appears to be a pipe at the source (like the pipe at the McDowell Mountain spring) coming out of the rock but this one without water. There is a large cairn on Hoolie Bacon near the apparent source. (HB111 is loaded with other large cairns that have no connection). Would need to go back for better look to validate this, but I don’t plan on returning anytime soon. Back in the day, this would have been dealt with immediately. Water was literally life or death to the beeves.
I hiked the 13 mile trip from Tortilla TH down FR213 to JF to Hoolie and back. No expected water resupply so I packed it. Temperature was 90s and cooling. Catclaw and Mesquite are creeping over the trails. I did light trail maintenance.
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
Three Hackberry Trees at Tortilla Ranch
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
Chuparosa in Cedar Canyon


water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Night Hawk Spring Dripping Dripping
water report recorded in the field on our app Route Scout The spring source is up the canyon from the boxes and the pipes are broken. The spring does not appear to run year round.

dry Tortilla Well Dry Dry
water report recorded in the field on our app Route Scout
2 archives
Apr 11 2020
ShatteredArm
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 Guides 4
 Routes 82
 Photos 440
 Triplogs 84

37 male
 Joined Nov 30 2015
 Phoenix, AZ
Cedar Basin loop, AZ 
Cedar Basin loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 11 2020
ShatteredArm
Hiking20.00 Miles 2,977 AEG
Hiking20.00 Miles   7 Hrs   57 Mns   2.55 mph
2,977 ft AEG      6 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Wanted to find a place that's not too far away, without crowds; and, given the pleasant weather forecast, a good Central Superstition Wilderness explore seemed to fit the bill. So I met a couple of friends (people I've already been in contact with the past month or so, of course) at Tortilla TH, with a few ideas in hand. Got there and found at 5-6 cars at the TH, which is 4-5 more than I've ever seen there. The first three miles is all FR, so it remains an attractive "socially distant" option...

One route that seemed especially intriguing involved a trail that is marked on an old laminated paper map my friend gave me. It leaves Hoolie Bacon trail where that trail leaves Tortilla Creek, and follows Tortilla Creek a couple miles to a point where it climbs a saddle overlooking Cedar Basin. It then goes across Cedar Basin to another saddle overlooking La Barge Canyon. It then drops down into the canyon and follows it to Red Tanks trail. One of my friends brought a Green Trails map that actually had this route marked on it, so we decided to give it a go, knowing that even the official trails in this area can be hard to follow.

The amount of green in the Tortilla Ranch area was remarkable; I've never seen anything like it in AZ. Thick grass several feet tall. It was like being in Ireland if Ireland had catclaw and cactus. On Hoolie Bacon dropping down into Tortilla Creek, the wildflowers were various and popping, and there were thistles so big their stems could hardly hold them up. Couldn't find the trail once it's in the creek; I suppose most people just stay in the creek bed.

Where Hoolie Bacon leaves Tortilla Creek is a distinct geographical location, with Tortilla Creek making a hard turn to the south, and Cedar Basin Creek (dry) heading to the southwest. HB continues straight west. We didn't find any sign of a trail heading along Tortilla Creek, so we just followed the creek. There aren't any serious obstacles in the creek, and every now and then we saw a cairn with what seemed like a trail bed leaving the creek, but every time I tried leaving the creek, I regretted it.

A little over a mile and a half in the creek, the route leaves Tortilla Creek on the west side. This spot probably would've been easy to miss with a paper map; glad I had a GPS device. There is a large cairn, but it would be easy to miss. A few times on the way up the slope we would stumble on an old trail bed, but could never really follow it for more than 50 feet at a time. At the top of the ridge, there were some big cairns, a great view of Cedar Basin and a good spot to rest for a few minutes.

The trip down into and back out of Cedar Basin was easy; it's largely clear of any serious vegetation, probably due to the Woodbury Fire (I don't know exactly how far west the fire went, but most of this route has been burned). On the way out of Cedar Basin, we stumbled on trail bed again, which was actually fairly decent a good ways up to the saddle. Down into La Barge, I managed to find trail bed in two stretches on the way down.

A short distance down La Barge, we found a 20 foot pour off, with an easy bypass to the left about 50 feet back upstream. When we got back down to the creekbed, we found... A turtle! We went back to the pouroff; big pool with a dripping waterfall that could be pretty impressive with more flow. In the next half mile or so we saw three more turtles, one of which was a cute little baby.

After we hit Red Tanks trail, progress got a little faster. When we got back to Tortilla Creek, it started raining. Even got some small hail, but it only lasted 5-10 minutes and was over. We decided we might as well just stay in Tortilla Creek, and took that back down to the ranch.

Pretty good day, and with how much off trail and creek bed there was, I was surprised we were able to cover 2.5 miles per hour.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial

dry Brads Canyon Dry Dry
Dry at La Barge confluence.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Canyon Spring Dripping Dripping
Some seeps in this area. La Barge has water here.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Cedar Basin Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
No water at the Tortilla confluence. In Cedar Basin there are a few small trickles in places.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Dogie Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
There is flow in the creek here.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Horse Camp Spring Dripping Dripping
Some pools in the creek.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Miller Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
_____________________
Apr 04 2020
kyleGChiker
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 Routes 9
 Photos 138
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined May 28 2019
 Phoenix, AZ
JF Trail to Coffee Flat Loop, AZ 
JF Trail to Coffee Flat Loop, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Apr 04 2020
kyleGChiker
Backpack25.06 Miles 4,884 AEG
Backpack25.06 Miles2 Days   8 Hrs   12 Mns   
4,884 ft AEG40 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Went out last weekend for another epic backpacking trip in the Superstitions! The proposed itinerary was
JF Trail :next: Hoolie Bacon Trail :next: Red Tanks Trail :next: Coffee Flat Trail

I told my mom it would be an adventurous trip since it was more in the eastern Supes (I know, it's not really the eastern Supes, but it's further east than our previous trip). I didn't really know what to expect, since the Woodbury fire swept through the whole area last May. I scoured HikeAZ looking for triplogs, photos, and water reports of people who had done these trails since the fire and there wasn't much. Hopefully my report will be helpful to some of you.

Saturday:
We started off the day with an early morning drive from north Phoenix out to the trailhead (about two hours). The drive itself is very scenic...definitely worth it! You know how sometimes a long drive to get to a hike is kind of drudgery, well this one is not! You turn onto Queen Valley road a few miles past the Peralta trailhead turnoff on US-60. Pretty soon it turns into a gravel road that is in pretty good condition. It's a total of 11 miles on gravel roads to get to the Woodbury TH, the starting point for our loop. I was driving my old Chevy Suburban, so I didn't have any problems with the road, but be aware that there are places where high clearance is helpful. There are also numerous creek crossings (they're not big enough to be called "fording a river" :lol: ) you have to drive through. The deepest water was around 2-3 feet. I have 4WD on my vehicle, but kept it in 2WD the whole road and did just fine. Eventually you get to the intersection of FR172 and 172A, where the fork to the right takes you to Roger's Trough TH, and the fork to the left takes you to the Woodbury TH. We met some people in two 4Runner's that said the road to Roger's Trough was terrible--far worse than last year--and they even had trouble getting up it! And if you know anything about four-wheeling, you know the 4Runner is a very capable vehicle!

We did the loop in the counter clock wise direction, so almost immediately, we dropped into a creek with medium flow. If I'm not mistaken, this water ends up flowing through Randolf Canyon and makes a nice dayhike (the Randolf-Frasier Loop). One of the first things we noticed when we got to the area was that the mountainsides were covered in yellow and what appeared to be brownish coloration. Having never been to the area, we assumed the yellow was some sort of mineral and the brownish color was the charred areas from the Woodbury fire. We couldn't have been more wrong! The blankets of color were from wildflowers! :y: That was a nice surprise. I'll be posting a photoset soon with pics from the trip. Over the course of the trip, we saw over 20 species of flowers, and me being an animal guy (especially birds), I didn't know any of them except that the yellow ones were poppies. I was trying to figure out just now if they are Californian or Mexican poppies, but really, botany isn't my thing, and I wouldn't want to misidentify something. :scared: As I'm writing this, I'm looking at commonly seen AZ wildflowers, and putting the ones we observed into the "Wildflowers" section down below. Wildflower names seem really hard to me, but it's never too late to start learning!

OK, enough about wildflowers, let's get on with the trip description. The trail turns out of the creek and winds slowly up the ridgeline to Tortilla Pass. Looking at a topo map for the JF trail, you can see three "peaks" or high points that are climbed on this hike. I'm not sure which of these is the official Tortilla Pass, but we didn't stop for our first break until we hit the first saddle. This was at the junction where the Rogers trail takes off toward Angel Basin. The scenery was nice, although there were definitely evidences of the fire. I'll have a dedicated paragraph towards the bottom with info about the burned areas, our impressions of the beauty, etc.

After Tortilla pass, the trail became noticeably rougher (as I imagine many people day-hike to the pass but don't continue on the JF trail any further). There was a lot of vegetation on the trail, although the lack of catclaw was a nice surprise for the duration of our trip. With the recent fire, most of the trees and bushes were burned, so as you were hiking, your clothes and backpack would brush up against the charred branches, leaving black marks over everything. Not the end of the world, but I'd suggest wearing older clothes you don't mind charring.

Between "peak 2" and "peak 3" on the topo map, there was a large grass field we hiked through. Imagine green grass 3-4 feet tall, with only 6 inch cairns to guide the way. Yeah, it was fun route finding! Actually, the whole day involved tons of route finding, but especially after pass. My mom doesn't have quite the experience route finding, and if I let her lead, we were getting off trail all the time. So I ended up having to lead the whole day, which I found after 10 miles, takes a big mental toll on you. I arrived at camp exhausted from the mental effort of staying on the trail. The JF trail is not for the faint of heart. It is not for novice hikers. In my assessment, a medium to high level of route finding skills is a must for successfully completing the JF trail. Honestly, about 1/3 of the time, I couldn't distinguish the trail from the non-trail. And this statement comes with hundreds of miles of route finding experience in the Grand Canyon (I've hiked every trail and route on the South Rim). It was a bad trail, one of the worst I've ever done. I suspect the fire destroyed all the vegetation, and now it has grown back in full force, but with no regard for the trail. :)

And to make matters worse, the cairns are spaced very far apart (several minutes hiking in some places). So essentially they don't do anything for keeping you on the right path. They just give some psychological affirmation every now and again "you're not an idiot for hiking through all this vegetation. Just keep going, you're doing great!" No doubt I got off the "trail" hundreds of times during our three days, but usually realized it quickly and was able to route back on to it without Mom realizing. Only twice did I actually "get lost" to the point where I intentionally circled back to the last known cairn to get back on track.

To conclude this section about trail conditions, I'd say it mostly applies to the JF trail and the Hoolie Bacon trail. The Red Tanks trail was in better shape and was easier to follow. The Coffee Flat trail was the best of them all, very easy to follow and relatively vegetation-free. What all the trails had in common was grass growing on top of the trail, so you never actually had a defined dirt/rock path. However, trails like Red Tanks and Coffee flat are more commonly hiked, so the grass was trampled, making the trail easier to follow than the Hoolie Bacon and JF trails.

Getting on with the trip report, we had considered camping at Clover Spring (~7 miles) "if there's water." Well, turns out there was plenty of water, but no place to camp. We scoured the area and found 0 ideal campsites and only a couple places that could work in a pinch. Knowing that Cedar Basin was only a few miles further, we opted to continue on and camp there. The descent from Clover Spring to Cedar Basin was some of the most overgrown trail, with lots of thistle to stab you when you weren't paying attention. We got rattled at by two different rattlesnakes on this section of trail, one about 3 feet off the trail, and the other about 40 feet off the trail (not sure why that snake even bothered to rattle :lol: ).

By the time we got to the junction with Hoolie Bacon, it was late afternoon, so we opted not to hike out to the Tortilla TH. That was originally part of the plan "just to see it."

There was some nice camping once we dropped into Cedar Basin, so we were glad we chose to move on from Clover Spring. That was a long first day and we were glad to be at camp and relax for the evening. I had twisted my ankle/knee on the way down that descent, so with that pain coupled with the mental effort of route finding, a good night's sleep was well deserved.



Sunday:
Climbed out of Cedar Basin past a couple springs (Night Hawk and Horse Camp). They both had water, enough to filter if you wanted, but not an abundance. I'll leave a more detailed water report down below. Before long, we were in Horse Camp basin, where there was an abundance of water. We also noted several potential campsites here for future reference. This section of the hike had a lot of dead trees. Not just small shrubs that burned, but full juniper trees. It was honestly kind of ugly, but the beauty of the saguaros (which survived! :y: ) and of Herman Mountain helped to overcome the dead trees. Also, the abundance of wildflowers reminded us that even in the midst of the dead, new life often springs forth. By early afternoon we arrived at the Red Tanks trail junction, at the top end of Upper La Barge Box. With my knee still hurting somewhat from yesterday, we had decided that this would be our camp for the day. It was beautiful scenery, second to none, and all the saguaros and flowers made for an iconic view. We passed the afternoon with reading the Scriptures and playing our favorite backpacking games. Specifically, bocce ball on the beach (modified rules) and "Pass the Pigs." If you've never heard of pass the pigs, it is the absolute best game to take backpacking. You can have fun for hours with only 15 grams of weight!

We explored Upper La Barge box just a bit, but didn't venture too far because I wanted to take it easy on my knee. It was a refreshing, fun-filled afternoon, and then we went to bed. I don't think we realized quite how far we still had to go the next day, or we might have hiked further today. :D



Monday:
Being in school at ASU with classes only on Tuesdays and Thursdays gives me the flexibility to take a long weekend at hike on Monday too, which is great! The hike from the Red Tanks trail junction up to the next saddle was a pleasant stroll along a small creek. There was an abundance of green vegetation, which helped obscure the charred bushes and trees. We saw another snake (yet to be identified, but not a rattler). At the saddle we were thrilled to find a hummingbird that made her nest in a dead cholla cactus. It was so windy at the pass we don't know how she was able to stay in her nest and not get blown away! Descending from the saddle, we quickly made it to Red Tanks Creek (I'm assuming that's the unofficial name), which had a light flow of water through it, which increased steadily as more water came from other springs. From here to the trailhead was probably the most scenic part of the hike. We were hiking along creeks the whole way (first Red Tanks, then Randolf, then Frasier), the area had less obviously burned trees, and the mountains were really cool. We also got back into the poppies and lupines, which was just gorgeous!

When we got to Randolf Canyon, we were surprised to see how bad the water quality was. Due to the gravel streambed, the water was murky and full of silt and sediment. We opted to filter water from Red Tanks Creek before we left it. Once on the Coffee Flat trail, the progress was quick back to the trailhead, except that we forgot how far it really was. The trail is not at all steep, but rather a pleasant uphill grade, essentially the same gradient as the creek. On the way out, we explored the old JF Ranch, complete with a working windmill! From there, rather than hiking the road back to our car, we took the Woodbury trail cutacross back to the initial JF trail, then walked back to the parking lot from there. It added a little distance, but it felt good to finish out the hike on the trail, rather than on a road.

All in all, this was an amazing trip! It makes me wish i had started exploring the Superstitions sooner. Well, there's always next fall when the weather cools down again. Have fun and stay safe!


A note about the Woodbury fire and the burn areas: Please take a look at my photoset for this hike, as that will give you a good visual description of what to expect. Honestly, there was much more burned than I was expecting. I looked at every photoset since the fire for these areas, but most people don't post picture of the burned stuff because it's not as pretty. In my photoset, I made sure to post pictures of the burned areas too so you have a better expectation. We were a bit disappointed by the amount of burned vegetation, but like we said before, and as you'll see in the pictures, there was a lot of new vegetation growing in its place. For the most part, I enjoyed the hike as much as I would have without the burned trees. Sometimes they were an eyesore and sometimes they were beautiful in their own unique way.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Extreme
Complete hillsides covered with Mexican Gold Poppy and Coulter's Lupine (possibly tailcup lupine. After looking at 6 or 7 species of lupine, I just had to pick one)
Globemallow
Phlox
Brittlebush
Desert Chicory
Desert marigold
Desert Primrose (yellow and white)
Desertstar Daisy
Fairy duster
Fiddleneck
Parry's bellflower
New Mexico Thistle (there were so many thisles!)
Purple Owl's Clover
Yellow Cups
Hedgehog Cactus
Angel's trumpets
Indian Paintbrush


I say extreme wildflowers because of the complete hillsides covered with poppies and lupines. The other flowers were in abundance too. I would estimate of our 25 miles, at least 20 of those were walking through flowers of some type.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Brads Canyon Light flow Light flow
We camped about a half mile downstream of here at the Red Tanks - Hoolie Bacon trail junction. There was light flow down there, but the creek was underground about half the time, and above ground about half the time. Plenty of water for filtering--probably 10 gallons per minute flow.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Cedar Basin Canyon Light flow Light flow
Camped near the creek in Cedar Basin (actually we camped about a half mile north of this water drop waypoint). There was light to medium flow through the canyon, enough that we could easily hear the water running from our tent. The creek was probably 3-4 feet wide and 2-3 inches deep.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Clover Spring Dripping Dripping
There wasn't any water along the trail, as some former water reports have mentioned. We had to walk down into the creekbed to find the water. I would say it was flowing, but ever so slightly. In two weeks, I probably wouldn't depend on this water, but it was fine now.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Fraser Canyon Light flow Light flow
I would describe Frasier Canyon as light flow. It was very shallow, making it easy to walk in/around the water in the creekbed for those places where the trail drops into the creek.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Horse Camp Spring Dripping Dripping
Like Night Hawk Spring, there was water, with sufficient places to filter from, but I wouldn't depend on this past mid-April this year. In other drier years, I would only depend on this if it had rained recently.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Musk Hog Canyon Light flow Light flow
There was some good flow coming down musk hog canyon. Probably 10+ gallons per minute, although I'm not good at gauging water flow.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Night Hawk Spring Dripping Dripping
There wasn't much, but there was some water coming from Night Hawk Spring. There were places to filter, with very light flow. I don't know the year-round reliability of this spring, but I'd guess it'll be dry in a couple weeks

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Randolph Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
I don't know about the spring, but Randolf Canyon was flowing nicely at the JF trail and at the Coffee Flat trail.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Red Tanks Canyon Light flow Light flow
There was good flow all the way down Red Tanks Canyon. See photos in my triplog and photoset.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Whetrock Canyon Light flow Light flow
There was light flow in Whetrock canyon, about the same amount of water as Frasier Canyon.
Mar 14 2020
hikerdw
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 Routes 165
 Photos 2,582
 Triplogs 428

61 male
 Joined Aug 16 2009
 Mesa,AZ
Hoolie Bacon - Peters Trail LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 14 2020
hikerdw
Hiking14.23 Miles 2,142 AEG
Hiking14.23 Miles   6 Hrs   48 Mns   2.43 mph
2,142 ft AEG      56 Mns Break
 
Partners none no partners
This was my third trip to the area since the fire, the previous trips were in August and September, just prior to the lengthy road closure. Even in this short time, the recovery is very much evident. Mother Nature curing the carelessness of man.

FR 213 Walk
Always a soothing walk in the morning. Large puddles post rain. Evident that there hasn't been much vehicle travel in the last 6 or so months. Passed one set of campers near the ranch site. Saw two deer.

.8 miles of JF Trail
Pretty much a gully as this early section of the trail hasn't seen any recent maintenance. Once you hit the fence post it gets a little better but not much. Saw one deer near the JF/Hoolie Bacon junction.

Hoolie Bacon Trail
The section from the JF Trail to Tortilla Creek is in average condition compared to itself, but is in no way groomed. At the creek crossing the flow was fairly quick so knowing that the trail crossed back over we decided to stay on the east side of the creek off trail which worked out well. Re-joined the trail where it crossed back over. Fire damage was very evident near the Nighthawk Spring trough. This was always a very peaceful, mystic area for me. It has changed but still has that lure. The trail up to Horse Ridge was in fairly decent shape and we made good time. On the other hand, the trail condition on the decent down wasn't as good. We lost the tread a couple times.

Off Trail between Hoolie Bacon and Peter's Trails
The corral survived the fire :y: Off trail conditions were not too bad, as a lot of the Catclaw hasn't returned to it's full force yet. Ran across what appeared to ba a game camera. Had lunch on the ridge that separates the two trails then followed our typical route along a drainage down to Peter's Trail.

Peter's Trail
In comparison to the Hoolie Bacon Trail, Peter's is in worse shape. Passed a lone hiker in colourful attire near the Horse Ridge saddle. Lot's of burned trees encountered as we neared Kane Spring. Running water everywhere. As we did off Hoolie's, we went off trail in sections to avoid the fast moving creek where we could but in some areas we just got wet. Lot's of charred trees and brush along the creek so skin and clothes got black blazes along the way. Took a well earned break at the Well site before we made the road trek back to the car.

Even post fire I would rate this area of the Superstition Wilderness above most others. If you could match a hiker to a set or style of trails, this would be my perfect match.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Cedar Basin Canyon Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Kane Spring Dripping Dripping
_____________________
1 archive
Jan 18 2020
AndrewAZ
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 Guides 1
 Routes 1
 Triplogs 16

40 male
 Joined Feb 27 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
JF Trail #106Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 18 2020
AndrewAZ
Hiking23.71 Miles 5,075 AEG
Hiking23.71 Miles   11 Hrs   5 Mns   2.14 mph
5,075 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
From Woodbury TH: JF over Tortilla Saddle to Hoolie Bacon to Red Tanks to Coffee Flat to Woodbury.

This one was a real :pk: kicker. I left my place before 5am, left US 60 around 6am, drove FR 172 in the dark, and started hiking at 7am. After Tortilla Saddle, I saw a buck and doe along JF, but that was it for wildlife. I had lunch at the saddle on Hoolie Bacon at 12:30.

While hunting for trail along a burned/eroded part of Hoolie, I was down in a wash and found a stainless steel canteen. Cap was still on tight and it was about 3/4 full of water (I'd guess it's a quart-sized bottle). The little chain holding the cap on was rusted, but otherwise it was in decent shape. I dumped it and hiked it out. I wonder how long it had been out there.

My hopes were getting high that I was finally going to do it: over 20 miles on established trails in the Superstitions without seeing anyone (without hiking in July or something dangerous like that). My hopes were dashed along Red Tanks when I finally met a pair of hikers. Only people I saw all day.

I was tempted to go up Randolph Canyon instead of using Coffee Flat trail, but there was enough water coming out of Randolph that it seemed like it could be tricky to stay dry. Plus, I hoped Coffee had better trail. I was wrong on that part. If there was ever good trail along that stretch of Coffee, it's gone now (aside from one portion that goes up high along the canyon wall, I assume to avoid a pouroff). The easiest thing was to walk in the wash, which had enough firm sand to make for pleasant walking on my very tired feet. With all the greenery and the trickle of water down the center, it was a nice "I can hardly believe this is Arizona" walk.

I was running low on fun around mile 18. I was out of fun by mile 20-21. The last two miles were more of a forced march than I would've liked.

I had to hustle along Red Tanks and Coffee Flat when I realized how much daylight I had left. I made the final climb along Woodbury as the sun was setting behind me (that final climb can kiss my :pk:). I got back to my truck with just enough light to change my shoes and drink the last of my water. It turned out to be even less fun to drive out on FR 172 in the dark than it was to drive in.

Lots of water flowing in most of the major washes. Not much along the higher parts of JF or Hoolie Bacon, but water almost everywhere else. Probably the most along Red Tanks, and definitely the most once it combined with the flow out of Randolph.

This was my first time on JF and the final stretch of Coffee Flat. I've now done every major trail on the western side of the Superstitions on my Green Trails map except the 1.6-mile stretch from Tortilla Pass to Angel Basin. However, I'm still missing some of the less-used (unofficial?) trails like Randolph Canyon, the Cedar Basin alternate to Hoolie Bacon, and West Boulder Canyon.

Comments on the specific trails:

JF: alternating areas of burnt and unburnt. Some stretches of vague and indistinct trail due to too few feet stomping the grass down. A little brushy in places, but nothing too bad. In spots where it did burn, it didn't seem to affect the trail too much.

Hoolie Bacon: the climb over the saddle is still steep and hot. Lots of burn damage (and subsequent flood damage). No underbrush among the dead manzanita groves, so parts of the trail are hard to follow--where once there was a clear path through underbrush, now everything looks open and vaguely trail-like. More than a few places I was thankful for cairns.

Red Tanks: Even more burn/flood damage than Hoolie. If it weren't for cairns, parts of this would be incredibly difficult to follow. Much of this reminded me of the burned-out areas along the AZT in the Mazatzals. The creek appears to have had torrential floods in the last mile or so approaching Coffee Flat trail. I don't recall it being that deep or wide the last time I walked it. I'd say this was the most damaged of all the trails I walked.

Coffee Flat: as mentioned above, there's really not much of a trail for most of this. It's just walking in the wash.
_____________________
1 archive
Apr 12 2019
Xiled1
avatar

 Photos 105
 Triplogs 13

46 male
 Joined Feb 26 2009
 Mesa, AZ
JF-Randolph-RedTanks&Bacon, AZ 
JF-Randolph-RedTanks&Bacon, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Apr 12 2019
Xiled1
Backpack28.00 Miles
Backpack28.00 Miles3 Days         
40 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
We headed out on Friday afternoon for two nights in the Supes. The plan was to loop from Tortilla Pass trailhead through Woodbury, and then back up Red Tanks/Hoolie Bacon. We parked at the road since we only brought the Suby. Next time we're bringing the Jeep and saving 6 miles. We can pack more booze that way. We were not sure of the water situation in the high country so we packed in extra. We hit first water at Clover Spring, pools in the drainage, but did not go to the actual spring. We camped up high for the night, right before you drop down to the Rogers Trough intersection. This section of the trail is mostly overgrown and full of ankle cactus. You can say that for pretty much the entire loop. Lots of loose rock to make it interesting.

The next morning we made our way down the JF to Randolph Canyon and it was flowing strong. It looked too inviting so we decided to take the canyon route instead of the Woodbury/Coffee Flat cow pattie. Typical canyon/water hike, loose rock, deep sand, wet feet and thorns. But it was beautiful and a highlight of the trip. My back and knees disagree though. We hit Red Tanks and started the slog up the hill. Red Tanks is beautiful but its always a test. We made it up, over, and down into the Labarge basin. The water was flowing nicely on the way down, but dried up to just random pools by the time we got to the camp spots. I recommend topping off earlier. We filled up and headed up Hoolie Bacon for about a mile to the summit before Horse Camp Basin and camped there for the night.

Up early the next morning and headed into Horse Camp Basin. Pools at many of the creek crossings there. Lots of camp sites as well. We headed the rest of the way out, up and down for a bit and then through the Tortilla Creek valley; a thankful rest on our knees and back. Plenty of water flow as well. We finished the road hike out and headed for some breakfast.

We'll try and add the pics later. Get out while the water is good.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
Desert Mariposa Lily, Poppies, Desert Chircory, Hedgehog Cactus, Blackfoot Daisy, Spreading Fleabane, Brittle Bush, and a few Evening Primrose.
_____________________
Mar 18 2019
markthurman53
avatar

 Guides 104
 Routes 575
 Photos 6,927
 Triplogs 477

67 male
 Joined Jun 27 2015
 Tucson, Arizona
Hoolie Bacon Trail, AZ 
Hoolie Bacon Trail, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Mar 18 2019
markthurman53
Hiking17.21 Miles 2,827 AEG
Hiking17.21 Miles   8 Hrs   41 Mns   2.45 mph
2,827 ft AEG   1 Hour   40 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Hoolie bacon Trail attempt 2. The last time I tried this hike Tortilla Creek was running to high and decided to turn around. Gave the creek a little over two weeks to settle down and it appears it did. Started once again at the Tortilla Trail Head and took the 3 mile SVR 213 to the JF Trail. Much easier on the JF and Hoolie Bacon without the snow and slush. Tortilla Creek was low enough to allow rock hopping. Still 3 foot deep pools in the area of the crossing, don't know how deep it would of been last time I was here. The only concern this time was keeping my feet dry, failing that would only mean I get wet feet. If I do fall in the task will be to keep the camera dry at all cost (well almost all cost). The trail I thought was in fairly good condition, easy to follow. The cat claw that was overhanging the trail was either broken back or in a few places cut back. The big climb out of Cedar Creek to Horse Ridge was not that hard, I found the climb on Peters Trail more difficult. Once on the saddle at Horse Ridge it is a gradual descent down to the Red Tanks Trail on LaBarge Creek. There is a small ridge to climb as you exit Trap Canyon and cross over to LaBarge Canyon. Trap Canyon Creeks and it's tributaries were all running. There are some really nice camp sites along the trail where Trap Canyon Creek heads west through a narrow canyon between Music Mountain and Herman Mountain. Very large Cedar trees and plush grass.

Ran into 3 people on the Hoolie Bacon Trail, a group of two and a loner.They were both doing the Grand Enchantment Trail. Heard of this trail but know nothing about it, supposedly it ends up in Albuquerque. Was kind of surprised to find anyone on this trail. The water report is everything is still running but will probably dry up on the smaller creeks like cedar and upper Trap Canyon in the next few weeks unless we get more rain/snow.

The 3 mile walk along SVR 213 is getting old but only have to do it one more time to do the JF Trail. Getting pretty good at it, can almost do it in my sleep. I could drive the Jeep up the next time but it would seem like it defeated me so I will probably just sleepwalk it again.
_____________________
Feb 27 2019
00blackout
avatar

 Routes 22
 Photos 420
 Triplogs 24

46 male
 Joined Mar 14 2016
 Phoenix, Arizona
Hoolie Bacon Trail #111Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 27 2019
00blackout
Hiking6.50 Miles 856 AEG
Hiking6.50 Miles   5 Hrs   30 Mns   1.18 mph
856 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Second try today to make it the entire way down Hoolie Bacon to the Upper La Barge Box entrance . Only made it to Horse Ridge again. :( Tortilla Creek is not cross-able right now without getting knee high in freezing cold water (which we did), however, Hoolie Bacon is beat to shit at the moment and actually I would say to completely avoid it right now. The snow has broken numerous holly and cat claw trees/bushes through out the hike and most blocked the trail (go figure lol). Once you start climbing up to Horse Ridge the trail turns into a muddy creek from all of the snow melt and then once you hit the first ridge the trail turns to snow. Extremely slow going and we decided to cut it short on the top of Horse Ridge. Also, between the first ridge and the top of Horse Ridge there is an area roughly 30 yards wide where a flash flood or possibly an avalanche came down the side of the mountain and destroyed every bush in it's path. Everything in that area is broken apart/snapped or fallen over. I have never seen anything like it before. Would like to head back and finish it when everything dries up and give it another try.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Cedar Basin Canyon Heavy flow Heavy flow
_____________________
Feb 25 2019
markthurman53
avatar

 Guides 104
 Routes 575
 Photos 6,927
 Triplogs 477

67 male
 Joined Jun 27 2015
 Tucson, Arizona
Hoolie Bacon Trail Partial, AZ 
Hoolie Bacon Trail Partial, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 25 2019
markthurman53
Hiking9.91 Miles 1,100 AEG
Hiking9.91 Miles   4 Hrs   3 Mns   2.70 mph
1,100 ft AEG      23 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
Partners none no partners
This was my day to hike the Hoolie Bacon Trail from the Tortilla Trail Head. Or so my plans were. The walk along SVR 213 to the JF Trail went as expected, just another stroll along a three mile road, second time for me. I had the song "On The Road again" stuck in my head almost the whole way. The Snow capping all the peaks around me made the trek along the road seem different almost like I was doing it for the first time. Temperatures were in the upper 30's at the old Tortilla Ranch site and the Pools of water along the road had a layer of ice on them. Not thick enough to walk on so the usual detours around these puddles was still required (about a dozen of them).

Once on the JF Trail the snow was covering the ground and the trail where it wasn't icy was running with water. The ice made the rocks on the trail slick and where the water was running the mud was gooey and sticky, found walking on the snow just off to the side of the trail much easier as it was still a bit frozen. The Hoolie Bacon Trail was the same. The trail had a lot of cat claw across it because the snow pushed or broke the branches onto it. Needed a pair of clippers. Made it down to the first crossing of Tortilla Creek and this is where my plans changed. The creek was running really high and was unable to get across without getting wet up to the waist (Didn't want to bag this trail that bad). I also figured by mid afternoon with the snow melt it would be even higher. (I also didn't want to have an encounter with the blue lilies that Joe encountered on his hike on the Bluff Spring Trail.) Will have to reschedule this hike for another time and include a pair of clippers for the cat claw.

On the return trip I went over to the Peters Trail to check out the creek there, quite different from when I was there a week or so ago. I still had a half a day so I picked another trail and I decided on the lower First Water Creek if it wasn't running too high. First though I thought I would drive over to Fish Creek and check it out. Glad I did because I was thoroughly impressed. Nice drive down a very narrow road. I was probably the only car from Arizona, the rest were from snow bird country from Dakotas to Minnesota and Ohio.

Water report: Water Water everywhere and not a bit that can't be drunk.
_____________________
Feb 02 2019
rayhuston
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 Guides 1
 Routes 81
 Photos 3,688
 Triplogs 604

63 male
 Joined Mar 09 2012
 Gilbert, AZ
Hoolie Bacon - Peters Trail LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 02 2019
rayhuston
Hiking14.96 Miles 2,241 AEG
Hiking14.96 Miles   6 Hrs   55 Mns   2.27 mph
2,241 ft AEG      20 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Trip #41 of the Hikers Guide to the Superstition Wilderness. I walked SR213 to Tortilla Ranch, as most do given the nearly impassable start to that road. Once on the JF trail, I followed their instructions as much as possible. I also brought a track left by @hikerdw just to make sure I had a way out if I needed it. This area is all new to me; safety first. The hike is described as difficult. There are a few stretches where I would agree with that.

I had overcast skies and a nice breeze for most of the day. The sun came out during the last half mile of Peter's trail and for most of the walk back on SR213. I saw a father and son at the start of the loop and another couple in the exact same location four hours later. Though not warm, it was humid. I brought 3 quarts of water and drank 2.

The open terrain on the Hoolie Bacon trail provides great views of the distant mountains. The views from Horse Ridge pass are excellent. The bushwhack to Peter's trail is way more than tedious. Long pants and long sleeves are required or there will be blood. Once on Peter's trail it was like being on a freeway. Let's get moving!

I stopped at the high pass on Peter's trail for lunch before starting down the steep and loose descent to the canyon below. Aside from the steep and loose, I found this section to be the best part of the loop. Lots of water in Tortilla Creek at the bottom. With the forecasted rain this week, it should be amazing next weekend.
Flora
Flora
Coulter's Lupine
Culture
Culture
Horseshoe
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation None
Nothing to speak of. Some desert mallow in one spot and a lone Coulter's Lupine on the road back.


water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Indian Spring Dripping Dripping
Plenty of water in Tortilla Creek

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Kane Spring Dripping Dripping


dry Tortilla Well Dry Dry
_____________________
Jan 05 2019
wallyfrack
avatar

 Routes 91
 Photos 4,623
 Triplogs 1,319

59 male
 Joined Mar 11 2003
 AZ
Brad's Camp, AZ 
Brad's Camp, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 05 2019
wallyfrack
Hiking18.85 Miles 3,327 AEG
Hiking18.85 Miles   7 Hrs   38 Mns   2.47 mph
3,327 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
I was looking for photos of Brad's Camp but I couldn't find any. I know a few people have been to Brad's Water but maybe the extra 100 yards to the camp was too much? I guess if you want something you need to get it yourself. There are three trailhead you can use to get here. Hikes in from Peralta, Tortilla or Woodbury trailheads are all about the same distance but if you can drive FR 213 it will save you 6 miles. I chose to hike in from Tortilla because I knew I'd see fewer people on the Hoolie Bacon Trail. I didn't see another hiker all day until walking back on FR 213. The HB trail is in good shape. There is some catclaw in a few spots but being the remote location I don't expect the trail to be perfectly groomed nor would I want it to be. The weather was perfect and there was snow, flowers and a butterfly. A great hike and I got photos of Brad's Camp.
Culture
Culture
Horseshoe
Named place
Named place
Brads Water Music Mountain
_____________________
Nov 12 2017
wallyfrack
avatar

 Routes 91
 Photos 4,623
 Triplogs 1,319

59 male
 Joined Mar 11 2003
 AZ
Cedar Basin, AZ 
Cedar Basin, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Nov 12 2017
wallyfrack
Hiking14.90 Miles 1,526 AEG
Hiking14.90 Miles   6 Hrs   5 Mns   2.45 mph
1,526 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Since I hid the past 3 hikes I guess I should post one. :lol: After realizing I'd never hiked to Cedar Basin it was time to go. The Tortilla trailhead had several vehicles there because hunting season has begun. Some hunters drove ATV's down FR 213 and waited and watched from a ridge. The hike down the road is a good warm up and saves on the vehicle. There were also two mules and a campsite down by the start of the JF trail. Once I started down the JF trail the people seemed to vanish. The Hoolie Bacon trail was a bit overgrown but that's just how I like it. Once I crossed Tortilla Creek I saw 3 white-tailed deer including one buck. The hunters should have followed me. :o Next, I started up Cedar Basin Canyon and hopped down the rocky creek bed. The canyon was more open than the trail so not too bad. While in Cedar basin I checked out the corral but the spring? was no where to be found. On the hike out I saw one more doe. The overcast sky and the canyon brush helped keep the sun off and made for a nice hike.
Culture
Culture
Corral
_____________________
Feb 25 2017
AndrewAZ
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 1
 Triplogs 16

40 male
 Joined Feb 27 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Hoolie Bacon - Peters Trail LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 25 2017
AndrewAZ
Hiking23.98 Miles 4,004 AEG
Hiking23.98 Miles   10 Hrs   40 Mns   2.25 mph
4,004 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
I parked at the 2wd trailhead just after 6:30 am and was hiking by 6:50. Wisdom being the better part of valor, I opted not to drive the 4wd road since I've never been up it before. I'm glad I made that choice. I probably could've made it up the road with my Tacoma with a skid plate and all-terrain tires, but it wouldn't have been fun.

The three road miles were quick and a good warm-up (or so I told myself). Started up JF to Hoolie Bacon to do the clockwise loop. At the first major water crossing, I startled three whitetails. Until the spot where one can bushwhack over to Peters Trail, HB was pretty easy to follow. After that point, it became awfully theoretical in places. Parts of it reminded me of Two Bar Ridge Trail, and that's not a good thing.

One of my brand-new Black Diamond Z Poles snapped 5 miles into the hike. The internal string broke inside the handle. My first pair of Z Poles lasted over 1000 miles, and this one gave out at under 20 miles. Defective, I hope, and not a sign of decreasing quality at BD. Having one break was frustrating since my 3wd speed is not nearly as good as my 4wd speed, and my stability is definitely worse.

Red Tanks was better quality than the second half of HB, although that's not saying much. After climbing up and over along the canyon wall, it disappeared for a while when it dropped back down to the creek. I assume it goes down the wash, but that's a challenge when there's several feet of water flowing down it. I ended up bouldering down the center of the creek, which was perhaps a bad idea. Some pretty big drops and leaps. Eventually found the trail again and it was well-marked from there to the Whiskey Spring junction.

In comparison, the part after the junction was a highway. I passed one woman along that stretch and she was the first human I'd seen all morning. She had a Gossamer Gear Mariposa and looked to be loaded for camping. I recently got a GG Mariposa and was using it for the first time as a day pack. What are the odds?

The water crossings on Dutchman were a little easier than in January, but not by much. Still some very large pools of water in places.

The drop in trail quality from Dutchman to Peters after taking 10 steps was amusing. It was a steep, hot climb in the afternoon sun, and once again the trail reminded me of Two Bar. Once I was up on the mesa, there was a little bit of air movement and the temperature was pleasant. The trail dropped again into a drainage, and it was the climb from that drainage where I could feel that I was running out of gas. I had powered up the climb from Dutchman, but this smaller climb took it out of me.

I had hit 18 miles, and I was getting pretty smug. I had only seen 1 person, and I had seen 3 whitetails. How many times can you see more deer than humans in the Superstitions? Of course, I ran into 2 hikers shortly thereafter to ruin the ratio. They were loaded for camping and looked a little tired. I discovered why when I made that drop past Kane Spring. Talk about steep and rocky and unstable trail. I was very thankful to be going down that section and not climbing it with a full pack.

About a mile from the 4wd trailhead, I ran into two guys and a dog splashing in the big pools of water and drinking beer (the dog looked like he might've been underage). I got my feet wet at the second-to-last water crossing when the rocks rolled under my feet, so I got to do the roadwalk with wet, sore feet. However, I was thankful I wasn't trying to navigate the road with my truck (manual truck + sore feet + rough road = not a good time).

On the way out, I caught and passed a guy on a bike with a very large hunting pack (at least two rifles). I think he was training or practicing, but he appeared to have more of a cyclocross bike than true mountain bike. He was having a tough time on the rocky shelves and it looked hard to balance with the big pack.

I carried a filter all day, but the 2L of water I started with ended up being enough. Just barely. This was a great hike and one that can finally be crossed off my to-do list.
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1 archive
Feb 25 2017
The_Eagle
avatar

 Guides 7
 Routes 797
 Photos 9,720
 Triplogs 1,308

64 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Woodbury Coffee and Red Bacon with JF, AZ 
Woodbury Coffee and Red Bacon with JF, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 25 2017
The_Eagle
Hiking24.29 Miles 5,200 AEG
Hiking24.29 Miles   11 Hrs   50 Mns   2.29 mph
5,200 ft AEG   1 Hour   14 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
The drive in on 172/172A was uneventful. Queen Creek had a decent flow, but nothing a vehicle that would be driving these roads couldn't handle. Close to our TH, we saw a large Ford Transit panel van coming down 172A.

Woodbury Trail #114
There was one truck at the TH when we got there.
This trail down to the Woodbury TH appears to be and old road.
Probably a one and done

Coffee Flat Trail #108
This eastern stretch of the Coffee Flat Trail to Red Tanks was new for me. It was an easy stroll through Fraser Canyon. Very pleasant with the green and water everywhere. This would make a nice loop with other canyons in the area.

Red Tanks #107
I'd done this section before but did not remember much of it. It's quite scenic with the views of the surrounding areas and all the flowing water.

Hoolie Bacon # 111
Hoolie Bacon for me, is just a way to get to other places in the Supes. We had lunch at Horse Saddle and it did have some great views. The only hikers we saw all day, were at this saddle. One dayhiker, one backpacker and us just happened to all meet at the same time there. The hike down from Horse Saddle to the North is steep, rough and loose. Once down in the lower sections the trail is much nicer. You easily cross the flowing Tortilla Creek numerous times.

JF Trail #106
The northwestern portions of this trail is just OK. There are BIG views of the surrounding areas that help a bunch.
The trail finally starts to get interesting in the mid section around unnamed Peak 4597. [ photo ] . It seemed to take forever to get to Tortilla Pass. Dropping down JF from Tortilla Pass, there is also some steep, loose washed out areas. Towards the bottom we hit sunset and donned our headlamps.

The 1.2 mile 500'+ climb out on Woodbury to the truck, could not end quick enough.
It was a full day in the Supes.
You couldn't ask for better hiking weather.

With this this loop I'm getting closer to hitting all the trails in the Supes (37 of 39 done).
I Just have the 2 shortest left, with just 1.1 Total miles to go!
Named place
Named place
Horse Camp Spring Tortilla Creek
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Fraser Canyon Medium flow Medium flow
flow all the way up to JF HQ

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Horse Camp Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Spring Box has not held water in quite some time. Plenty of water in the spring area

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Musk Hog Canyon Light flow Light flow
Flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Night Hawk Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Hard to tell what was from Tortilla Creek and what was from the Spring

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Red Tanks Canyon Medium flow Medium flow
Plenty of clear cool water

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Whetrock Canyon Medium flow Medium flow
flowing

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Whetstone Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Did not examine the spring, but plenty of flow in the area
_____________________
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
Feb 25 2017
joebartels
avatar

 Guides 241
 Routes 830
 Photos 11,805
 Triplogs 4,647

50 male
 Joined Nov 20 1996
 Phoenix, AZ
Woodbury Coffee and Red Bacon with JF, AZ 
Woodbury Coffee and Red Bacon with JF, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Feb 25 2017
joebartels
Hiking24.14 Miles 5,147 AEG
Hiking24.14 Miles   11 Hrs   50 Mns   2.28 mph
5,147 ft AEG   1 Hour   14 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Most high clearance 2wd vehicles should be able to make the drive. Several water crossings. The only likely issue is for those timid with a gas pedal crossing Queen Creek.

Woodbury Trail #114
Hiked this to scratch if off a list.

Coffee Flat Trail #108
The cow patties get your attention when it's dry. It's a slice of heaven when the creeks are flowing. Really nice saguaros either way.

Red Tanks #107
Five years after our first hike on the eastern side we returned. It didn't ring a bell. A little rough. This trail has four distinct personalities: La Barge Creek, Upper La Barge Box, North of Red Tanks Divide, Red Tanks Canyon. I like 'em all. It's not a trail for flip flops and shorts, come prepared.

Hoolie Bacon # 111
The best part of this trail is Bacon in the name. Horse Ridge saddle is a fine lunch stop with great 360 views. 4143 is better, please keep that a secret.

JF Trail #106
I've jigsawed this in the past, mainly Tule to Peralta. I do not care for either end. The 2.3 mile middle segment from 4597 to Tortilla Pass is worthy. It has a Reavis spirit of intrigue that I find relaxes the mind.

Synopsis
Bruce suggested JefF out-n-back. Meh... do I know you? He came back with this loop and it was game on! We had perfect temps with all the creeks in taper down flow. I didn't blink at 22+ miles. Boy howdy, 12 hours sucker punched my body.
Hurts so good, great hike!

carried 3.5 quarts, consumed 2.5
Culture
Culture
Horseshoe Mascot
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
a few sprigs of paintbrush was the main attraction, several dozen blue dicks scattered throughout our loop, two poppies... yeah not much

lots of wiry lotus, which is like getting excited over dollar store cookies
_____________________
- joe
Jan 28 2017
BiFrost
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 354
 Photos 7,472
 Triplogs 899

50 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Hoolie Bacon - Peters Trail LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 28 2017
BiFrost
Hiking19.56 Miles 3,895 AEG
Hiking19.56 Miles   10 Hrs   11 Mns   2.05 mph
3,895 ft AEG      38 Mns Break
 
1st trip
With all the water in the Supes we set out again to see just how much was flowing. But before starting we decided to drive the crappy 4wd road from the Tortilla TH to the start of Peters Trail. It's about 3 mile road but the first 1/2 mile is the really bad section and after that uneventful. Arriving at Peters Trail it was still cool at 39 degrees and the trail immediately goes into a fork of Tortilla Creek. Lots of water in the creek and it became apparent that keeping feet dry would either be impossible or take too much time. The trail is in decent shape besides the crossings and follows one of the Tortilla Creek forks until it goes over a saddle and then dropped into Peters Canyon. Here again there was plenty of water flowing in the creek just like Tortilla.

Followed Peters downstream for another mile and half where the trail abruptly leaves the canyon and heads up a side drainage to another saddle. We went up and over the mesa before dropping into La Barge Canyon but just before that we ran into a trail crew clearing their way up Peters Trail. Surprised to see a crew clearing this trail but it was welcome maintenance since Peters is in rough shape compared to other popular Supes trails.

Upon reaching La Barge Canyon we headed over to Charleblois Spring and had lunch. Several people camped before the spring but we had the spring to ourselves. However, just leaving the spring we ran into @lindaagm and @The_Whit coming from Peralta TH. We took a few minutes to chat...nice to see Linda and Whitney again! After that we headed up La Barge Canyon towards the Red Tanks Junction. Now on Red Tanks this was new trail for us and pretty fast section with a few creek crossings and more water. At the top section of Red Tanks it goes through the most scenic section of the loop the Upper La Barge Box. Really awesome section but unfortunately it was getting late and would have been nice to explore the canyon especially with so much water.

Continuing on we reached the Hoolie Bacon junction and headed up this trail making the turn back towards the vehicle. Hoolie Bacon trail was like Peters being very rough and added cats claw for fun. But again there was plenty of water at virtually every drainage crossing. Up and over a couple of ridges the trail eventually makes it back into Tortilla Canyon to finish up the loop. We made it to the vehicle just as it was getting completely dark. Definitely would like to come back and spend more in Upper La Barge Box and Trap Canyon when there is water like right now.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Cedar Basin Canyon Heavy flow Heavy flow
heavy flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Charlebois Canyon Heavy flow Heavy flow
heavy flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Charlebois Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
mini waterfall coming out of the spring

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Upper LaBarge Box Canyon Heavy flow Heavy flow
heavy flow with many pools
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1 archive
Jan 28 2017
slowandsteady
avatar

 Routes 67
 Photos 966
 Triplogs 694

46 female
 Joined Jan 05 2012
 Phoenix,AZ
Hoolie Bacon - Peters Trail LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 28 2017
slowandsteady
Hiking19.56 Miles 3,895 AEG
Hiking19.56 Miles   10 Hrs   11 Mns   2.05 mph
3,895 ft AEG      38 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
_____________________
Jan 07 2017
joebartels
avatar

 Guides 241
 Routes 830
 Photos 11,805
 Triplogs 4,647

50 male
 Joined Nov 20 1996
 Phoenix, AZ
Dutch Whiskey Red Bacon Peters, AZ 
Dutch Whiskey Red Bacon Peters, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 07 2017
joebartels
Hiking22.69 Miles 4,679 AEG
Hiking22.69 Miles   11 Hrs   15 Mns   2.29 mph
4,679 ft AEG   1 Hour   20 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Started about a half hour before light and finished just after sunset. Breezy and brisk for a couple hours then fab. Quick chat with Kyle and company waking up near Whiskey Springs. First time I glanced at the gps we were at 7.4 miles and 2k. Was it possible I under planned?

Covered a new mile to myself on Hoolie after Trap Canyon. After 15 years I finally have #111 complete.

Next up was one mile off trail to keep the loop in respectable mileage range. Aside from near the Tortilla TH this is as close as Peters & Hoolie get to each other. Several all stars have done it and there is a nice [ description ] too. It would suck in shorts. Wearing pants it wasn't terrible. With a break in the middle we slow poked the mile in 1h 10m.

Bruce wasn't impressed with terrain/views after passing Trap Canyon. With water running and Tortilla Peak towering I think we both enjoyed the views again heading down Peters Trail. On the same token each step seemed annoying. Fatigue was a factor and it was about the warmest of the day.

We lunched mid way down the canyon at a nice cascade. Rain drops blew in from a good angle. Not only was it blue sky above, the nearest cloud seemed suspiciously far.

Temps slowly dropped as we finished up after sunset. Nothing mesmerizing, just a good ol' loop in the Superstitions.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
fairy duster in areas, yellow in some low scrub bush, hint of Brittlebush, one isolated red penstemon type

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Barks Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
pools to a trickle

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Bluff Spring Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
pools observed from above on trail, La Barge Canyon was running nice nearby

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Peters Mid-Upper Along Trail Light flow Light flow
light flow along great pools, nice cascades

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Upper LaBarge Box Canyon Light flow Light flow
running nice, easy to cross

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Whiskey Spring Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
large pools
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- joe
Jan 07 2017
The_Eagle
avatar

 Guides 7
 Routes 797
 Photos 9,720
 Triplogs 1,308

64 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Dutch Whiskey Red Bacon Peters Bluff, AZ 
Dutch Whiskey Red Bacon Peters Bluff, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Jan 07 2017
The_Eagle
Hiking23.06 Miles 4,930 AEG
Hiking23.06 Miles   11 Hrs   13 Mns   2.33 mph
4,930 ft AEG   1 Hour   20 Mns Break14 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
A nice loop in the Mid Supes to hit some new sections of trail.

Barkley Basin never disappoints in the early morning light.

At the Whiskey spring area, I hear a "Hey Bruce". We stopped in and chatted with Kyle @toughboots as his camp was waking up.

Hoolie Bacon #111 past Trap Canyon was new to me. It could use a little love.
Joe led us through a prickly off trail shortcut from Hoolie Bacon to Peters Trail #105. First time on Peters Trail. It had some sweet views, but full of ankle twisters. This trail is also thin in places.

Lunch time Video/Screen saver :next: [ youtube video ]

There in no shortage of water, anywhere out there in the Supes right now. Everything was flowing.

Just a great day and weather in the supes.
Started in the breaking light, finished in the waning light.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Barks Canyon Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Crystal Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
Plenty of water in the area

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Music Canyon Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Peters Mid-Upper Along Trail Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Upper LaBarge Box Canyon Light flow Light flow
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There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
1 archive
Dec 27 2016
knmurphy
avatar

 Photos 281
 Triplogs 222

40 male
 Joined Aug 03 2008
 Chandler, AZ
Tortilla Super LoopPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 27 2016
knmurphy
Hiking17.80 Miles 3,500 AEG
Hiking17.80 Miles   8 Hrs   24 Mns   2.38 mph
3,500 ft AEG      55 Mns Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Great hike, perfect weather today. There is water everywhere, all the creeks are flowing.
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average hiking speed 2.27 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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