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Canyon Creek - Tonto NF - 14 members in 32 triplogs have rated this an average 3.4 ( 1 to 5 best )
1, 2  Next
32 triplogs
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32 Triplogs
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Jul 28 2019
Falke
avatar

 Routes 3
 Photos 6
 Triplogs 25

45 male
 Joined Sep 13 2013
 Phoenix, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Jul 28 2019
Falke
Hiking6.39 Miles 415 AEG
Hiking6.39 Miles   22 Hrs   13 Mns   2.11 mph
415 ft AEG   19 Hrs   11 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Route Scout Route Recorded  on Route Scout Popup | MapDEX
This is a very easy backpack trip. Maybe perfect if you’ve got kids and want to find something for a first time backpacking trip? At first the hike follows canyon creek through some beautiful meadows. The next part is basically a hike along a very well maintained, and well travelled dirt road. Canyon Creek seems to be primarily frequented by fly-fishermen most of whom were surprised to see actual backpackers. Once the road curves up and west stick alongside the creek. From here its all beautiful and its really what makes this trip worth it. The night was perfect, day was a bit hot, but there are plenty of opportunities to dip in the creek for a nice cool-off. :)
_____________________
Nov 03 2017
TheNaviG8R
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 37
 Photos 2,911
 Triplogs 452

51 male
 Joined Jul 26 2008
 Mesa, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 03 2017
TheNaviG8R
Hiking2.00 Miles 250 AEG
Hiking2.00 Miles
250 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
Oct 14 2017
TheNaviG8R
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 37
 Photos 2,911
 Triplogs 452

51 male
 Joined Jul 26 2008
 Mesa, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 14 2017
TheNaviG8R
Hiking1.60 Miles 250 AEG
Hiking1.60 Miles
250 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
Sep 16 2017
Steph_and_Blake
avatar

 Guides 100
 Routes 61
 Photos 2,522
 Triplogs 176

72 male
 Joined Nov 21 2015
 Grand Junction,
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Sep 16 2017
Steph_and_Blake
Hiking2.80 Miles
Hiking2.80 Miles   1 Hour   15 Mns   2.80 mph
      15 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
This morning my hubby, Blake, and I drove to Canyon Creek so he could wet a line. Upon getting out of our vehicle we were greeted with lots of bugling. No, not brass bugles. Elk! I'd read in the Payson paper yesterday that elk were in rut and thought nothing more of it. My intent for the morning was to find a nice sunny spot to catch up on some reading while Blake scared the trout. My plans quickly changed, however, as I made up my mind to find me some elk. I've only seen them "in the wild" near the South Rim and thought this would be a real treat. Never mind that I (a) haven't a clue about tracking elk and (b) have heard about photo-obsessed tourists getting killed by bulls in rut. This would be far more exciting than reading magazines! I crossed the creek to get to the east side and hiked in a northerly direction and about 1/4 of the way up the mountainside. Before long I came across a trail of sorts and continued on it. At first I thought it might be a path cut by cattle, but there didn't seem to be enough cow pies around and those that I did see were rather old. I did see, however, plenty of elk scat and some quite fresh. I also noticed numerous patches of matted grass where I guessed the elk had bedded down. Did I mention that I know nothing about elk and their habits? Anyway, I followed the path for well over a mile then had to make my way back to meet Blake for lunch. I crossed back across the creek and walked south along FS Road 188 to dine with my favorite (and, today, unlucky) angler. I never did see any elk but, at least in my imagination, I had just missed them.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
wild aster
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Stephanie and Blake Barnard
Sep 03 2017
nonot
avatar

 Guides 96
 Routes 239
 Photos 2,001
 Triplogs 486

male
 Joined Nov 18 2005
 Phoenix, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Sep 03 2017
nonot
Backpack12.00 Miles 1,050 AEG
Backpack12.00 Miles3 Days         
1,050 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
outdoor_lover
Thanks for the invite Outdoor_Lover!

This is a peaceful creek that flows through some fairly pristine parts of the forest that has generally nicely recovered from the Rodeo-Chedeski fire. The small waterfalls were a nice find, the meadows were full of flowers, and the elk trails connected together fairly nicely. Saw a few deer, but all the trout seem quite small. The weather was nice, just getting hot enough to make swimming in the cool creek more desirable. Other than the leeches, it went off pretty much flawlessly.

We took a different route on the way out, avoiding most of the people cramming into this place on the holiday weekend.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Mule Creek Medium flow Medium flow
Quite a lot of flow coming down mule creek.

dry Valentine Canyon Dry Dry
Appeared to be dry at the mouth, and a bit upcanyon that we explored.
_____________________
http://hikearizona.com/garmin_maps.php

Hike Arizona it is full of sharp, pointy, ankle-twisting, HAZmaster crushing ROCKS!!
Hike Arizona it is full of sharp, pointy, shin-stabbing, skin-shredding plants!
Hike Arizona it is full of striking, biting, stabbing, venomous wildlife!
Sep 01 2017
outdoor_lover
avatar

 Guides 7
 Routes 53
 Photos 12,949
 Triplogs 568

58 female
 Joined Aug 19 2011
 Scottsdale, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Sep 01 2017
outdoor_lover
Backpack11.00 Miles 400 AEG
Backpack11.00 Miles3 Days         
400 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
nonot
Now that the Ankle is Healed up and the Toes fixed so I can wear Shoes again, I've been busy trying to get back in Shape...After losing a little Weight, hitting the Gym, getting quite a bit of Hiking in and some Canyoneering too, it was time to think about Backpacking once more. It's been about 3 Years since I've been and I want to get back into it...

This one has been on my List for a long Time, and it seemed to be a Perfect Fit to get started... Steve mentioned he hadn't been out with a Pack in awhile, so I invited him along... :)

The first Day, going in, I was pretty rough around the Edges. We decided to try to keep our Feet Dry going in, and between trying to do that, adjusting to the Pack Weight, and not being totally prepared to keep my Camera dry if I slipped, I was having a hard Time through the first few Creek Crossings. It didn't help that my Confidence is just up from Basement Level after being pretty much off with Injury for over the last Year... But, I had the Foresight to bring Hiking Poles. (A Lesson learned from a Backpack with Alex, when I had to use his for Crutches a few Years ago, due to an IT Band Issue) After I broke out the Poles and figured out a way to Protect the Camera if I went in, I was doing much better, although I just felt a bit Rough and Discombobulated that First Day. Ended up getting my Feet Wet anyway just before we settled in on a Location for Camp... :sweat:

Found a nice Spot to Camp next to the Creek and Steve got a small Fire going, and I was able to get my Shoes mostly Dry... Got up the next Morning and Explored Down the Creek some more... There had to have been a Thousand Butterflies around the Water and the Flowers. Most of them were Blues, but there were several other Species as well, just not in the same Numbers... The Blues were in Clusters near Water, Mud and even on the Flowers... If you stepped anywhere near a Cluster, you were immediately Enveloped in Blue as they all took Flight... Between the Water, the Wildflowers and the Wildlife, my Camera stayed extremely busy for the 3 Days. It didn't help that the Area was all New to me either... Steve was a Saint about it, but I probably wouldn't have been Offended if he had Bitch Slapped me a few Times to snap me out of Tibber Mode... :lol:

After a couple of Hours, I decided to Stop in a small Meadow as I wanted to go into Full On Tibber Mode for a while. Steve decided to keep going for a ways and we set a Meet-Up Time to be back at the Meadow for the Return to Camp. After Steve got back from what I will describe as a "glad I didn't go any farther trip", we headed back to Camp, gradually getting there, as I kept running the Camera... Once back in Camp, we decided to take a Swim and although the Water felt great, there were some Blood Thirsty Suckers in that Pool, much to our Surprise... After Stripping down even more and picking a ton of tiny Leeches off of ourselves and each other, we settled back in at Camp with another nice Fire... Not quite the HAZfest Standard Fire, but it was Perfect for getting the Clothes dry...

Got up the next Morning, packed up, and started Heading for the Escape. As we got closer, the people started to be Noticeable, so we decided to take a different Route on the other side of the Creek. That worked out extremely well and we avoided most of the Masses where the Creek was more Accessible. Back to the Vehicle and a late Lunch in Payson before heading to the Barn...

Perfect Choice for a Rusty Backpacker with Confidence Issues. Got things Ironed Out, figured out what to do different next Time and even though there wasn't always a Trail of some kind or another, it was an Easy Trip all around... Thanks for joining me Steve! :y:

I did a Short Video of some the Blue Butterflies along the Water, so here you go.... [ youtube video ]
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
The Poison Ivy is starting to turn...
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial
All kinds of different Wildflowers going right now...

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

dry Sheep Creek Dry Dry
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Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"
Aug 13 2017
MountainMatt
avatar

 Guides 3
 Routes 194
 Photos 3,407
 Triplogs 514

male
 Joined Jan 24 2016
 Arizona
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 13 2017
MountainMatt
Hiking4.58 Miles 246 AEG
Hiking4.58 Miles
246 ft AEG25 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Not sure why it took me so long to check this long awaited place out but wow!
CC has all my favorite components and I would most definitely rank this as one of my favorite places in the state with this short visit alone.
Went down into where it narrows up and the "good stuff" begins or the "fun stuff" as @te_wa referenced.

A bit of storm activity was going on that day and and expected to pick up in the evening so I did not stay as late as my usual trips but I already have a backpacking trip date planned within the next few weeks.
Big things in the works to explore the many wonders of this major sacred creek!
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May 28 2016
JoelHazelton
avatar

 Guides 16
 Routes 10
 Photos 967
 Triplogs 406

35 male
 Joined Mar 22 2006
 Phoenix, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar May 28 2016
JoelHazelton
Hiking5.00 Miles 250 AEG
Hiking5.00 Miles
250 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Relaxing Memorial Day weekend overnighter. Such an easy hike and so few people, even on a popular weekend. About a half mile from camp, while I was setting up photos and Kristen was reading, Cholla started barking like crazy and took off downstream. We quickly noticed a black bear and her cub standing on a ledge 20 feet above the creek, about 100 feet away. Fortunately Cholla only went to the edge of the creek to yell at the bears to go away. Once they turned around and left (which took a concerning 5+ seconds before they reacted) she retreated back to us. Needless to say, all of our smellables got hung far away from camp that evening. Canyon Creek is beautiful through the grassy meadows near the campgrounds, but is even better downstream once it enters the canyon.
_____________________
"Arizona is the land of contrast... You can go from Minnesota to California in a matter of minutes, then have Mexican food that night." -Jack Dykinga

http://www.joelhazelton.com
May 14 2016
OdinWiski
avatar

 Photos 2,351
 Triplogs 99

49 male
 Joined Jan 31 2015
 Chandler, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar May 14 2016
OdinWiski
Hiking7.09 Miles 374 AEG
Hiking7.09 Miles   4 Hrs   5 Mns   2.13 mph
374 ft AEG      45 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Friends wanted to do an easy and relaxing hike and picked this one out. So off we went. Airplane Flat must have been reserved for some huge group party. It and the fish hatchery were like a busy zoo when we arrived. We wanted to follow the creek when we started instead of going over the barbed wire fence and continuing on the meadow. Bushwhacked quite a bit before we got back on the trail. The rest was easy going. The creek was flowing nicely and the riparian green was pretty. Friend is a birding enthusiast. High reward of 18 species being spotted in the short few miles, which were added to his annual log. Took our time having a 45-minute lunch watching a lazy and docile 5-foot bull snake before heading back. The huge party was gone and only a couple of vehicles were there.
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1 archive
Aug 02 2014
Lucyan
avatar

 Routes 1
 Photos 20,071
 Triplogs 1,027

41 female
 Joined Jan 18 2011
 In the Wild
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Aug 02 2014
Lucyan
Backpack10.00 Miles 250 AEG
Backpack10.00 Miles2 Days         
250 ft AEG20 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
Jul 19 2014
trailzrus
avatar

 Routes 69
 Photos 3,130
 Triplogs 1,053

68 male
 Joined Jul 24 2009
 Mesa, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Jul 19 2014
trailzrus
Hiking2.00 Miles 250 AEG
Hiking2.00 Miles
250 ft AEG
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
Jun 22 2013
ultrazona
avatar

 Routes 7
 Photos 1,137
 Triplogs 187

34 male
 Joined Mar 07 2009
 Phoenix, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Jun 22 2013
ultrazona
Backpack5.00 Miles 250 AEG
Backpack5.00 Miles1 Day         
250 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
May 04 2013
ultrazona
avatar

 Routes 7
 Photos 1,137
 Triplogs 187

34 male
 Joined Mar 07 2009
 Phoenix, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar May 04 2013
ultrazona
Backpack5.00 Miles 250 AEG
Backpack5.00 Miles1 Day         
250 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Great overnighter for beginners. Make sure to explore down creek as the landscape improves dramatically.
_____________________
Mar 23 2013
DaveB96
avatar

 Photos 269
 Triplogs 21

38 male
 Joined Oct 07 2010
 Phoenix, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 23 2013
DaveB96
Hiking13.00 Miles 1,000 AEG
Hiking13.00 Miles   5 Hrs   35 Mns   2.33 mph
1,000 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Added quite a bit to this one, decided to do a little cross country, so pulled off at airplane flat and set off. We got distracted by a small run off and followed that for 2 miles before finally giving in to the fact that we were going the wrong way. climbed the ridge and saw our creek and road. It was kind of a nice side trek, that's where we saw about 50 elk in three different herds, and got properly introduced to the local thorns :? . After that it was smooth sailing, hit the road for about 3 and a half more miles, crossed the creek at a sketchy log jam and made camp. Followed the proper way back to the cars. Still a bit cold up there. We still saw a lot of snow and standing water on top of the rim. But the road is in good enough shape we made it in a prius ;) .
Fauna
Fauna
Elk
Culture
Culture
Camp-fire
_____________________
Apr 29 2012
coltonalxndr
avatar

 Routes 1
 Triplogs 42

31 male
 Joined Jan 08 2010
 Peoria, Arizona
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 29 2012
coltonalxndr
Hiking2.19 Miles 250 AEG
Hiking2.19 Miles
250 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
Apr 22 2012
coltonalxndr
avatar

 Routes 1
 Triplogs 42

31 male
 Joined Jan 08 2010
 Peoria, Arizona
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Apr 22 2012
coltonalxndr
Backpack4.50 Miles 250 AEG
Backpack4.50 Miles
250 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
allanalxndr
_____________________
Aug 28 2011
gbpckrsfan04
avatar

 Triplogs 11

33 male
 Joined Aug 18 2011
 Surprise
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar Aug 28 2011
gbpckrsfan04
Hiking1.80 Miles 250 AEG
Hiking1.80 Miles      54 Mns   2.00 mph
250 ft AEG12 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial
_____________________
May 29 2011
kenandjude
avatar

 Photos 637
 Triplogs 94

44 male
 Joined Jan 30 2007
 Gilbert, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Hiking avatar May 29 2011
kenandjude
Hiking2.00 Miles 250 AEG
Hiking2.00 Miles   1 Hour      2.00 mph
250 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Took my 8 year old son and just followed the creek down a mile or so and headed back. Wonderful views!
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
_____________________
-Ken

Aizona is God's country
2 archives
Aug 22 2010
cabel
avatar

 Guides 4
 Photos 2,750
 Triplogs 400

56 male
 Joined Nov 13 2005
 Cave Creek, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Aug 22 2010
cabel
Backpack10.00 Miles 250 AEG
Backpack10.00 Miles2 Days         
250 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Beautiful place. Creek is great and we saw plenty of fish. THERE IS NO TRAIL! Follow the creek and have fun.
_____________________
All who wander are not lost...just me.
Aug 21 2010
Thoreau
avatar

 Routes 10
 Photos 466
 Triplogs 679

male
 Joined Mar 10 2008
 Phoenix, AZ
Canyon Creek - Tonto NFPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Backpack avatar Aug 21 2010
Thoreau
Backpack5.00 Miles 250 AEG
Backpack5.00 Miles2 Days         
250 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
_____________________
average hiking speed 2.23 mph
1, 2  Next

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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