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Tag: Tonto National Forest (page 6 of 7)

An Infrared View from the Pine Creek Loop

I took this shot using a Hoya R72 (infrared) filter on my RX100 III while hiking the Pine Creek Loop on Saturday:


This is what it looks like without the filter:



Update: It was suggested to me that the IR version be brightened…



I also tried processing it another way:



Barnhardt Trail Hike

Bob, Nick, Marilyn, and I hiked five miles out (and five miles back) on the Barnhardt Trail on Sunday. Total ascent was over 2,000 feet.

We heard, and then saw, an Arizona Black Rattlesnake. I had never seen this type of rattlesnake before.


I think this might be fleabane:






A view of the waterfall; only a small trickle of water was flowing through it on our visit.


Just outside of the alcove leading into the waterfall:


A dead tree – one of many – a short ways up the trail from the waterfall:


Bob scouted ahead while I was taking shots of the waterfall with my tripod. He recommended this shot of the pincushion (mammillaria) cacti.


This shot was taken near the intersection with the Sandy Saddle Trail.20141026-_DSC9799-Edit-medium-2

This panorama was constructed from 33 separate exposures. Eleven three shot brackets were processed individually to form eleven exposure merged files. These eleven files were edited in Lightroom and then combined into a panorama in Photoshop.





Pine Creek Loop

I hiked the Pine Creek Loop late on Wednesday afternoon…

20141015-_DSC2570_1_1_2-Edit-medium 20141015-_DSC2627_8_9-1-Edit-medium 20141015-_DSC2639-Edit-medium 20141015-_DSC2648-Edit-medium 20141015-_DSC2675-Edit-medium

Sunset from the Pine Creek Loop



Ballantine / Pine Creek Loop

On Saturday, Marilyn and I hiked about four miles on the Pine Creek Loop and Ballantine Trails.

Midway up the steep part of the Pine Creek Loop, we encountered this saguaro.  Most of it is clearly dead, but one arm still seems to be living.

20140830-DSC06011-Edit-medium Morning views…

20140830-DSC06032-Edit-medium 20140830-DSC06041-Edit-medium 20140830-DSC06056-Edit-medium Marilyn spotted this caterpillar.

20140830-DSC06083-Edit-mediumWe saw this large multi-armed saguaro when we were nearly back.


July 4 & 5 Hikes

Bob and I hiked out to the top of Apache Leap on July 4.  On July 5, we returned to the area and approached Apache Leap from the west side.  We hiked up some old roads and eventually started following some cairns to the base of Apache Leap, but turned back before we got there because, without climbing gear, it looked doubtful that we would be able to proceed much further once we arrived at the base.  We then went on to do a short hike in Upper Devil’s Canyon.

Bees and other insects around an agave flower.

20140704-_DSC6094-Edit-medium Bob standing atop a boulder at the northern edge of Apache Leap.

20140704-_DSC6130-Edit-medium A view of Superior with Picketpost Mountain in the distance.  We’ve added Picketpost Mountain to the list of hikes we want to do.  There is a hike which goes to the summit.20140704-_DSC6157-Edit-mediumWe could see Weaver’s Needle from this vantage point too.

20140704-_DSC6193-Edit-medium Another view of Picketpost Mountain with the town of Superior in the foreground.

20140704-_DSC6223-Edit-medium We hiked further south along to reach another view from the top of Apache Leap.

20140704-_DSC6241-Edit-medium This shot, taken at a 10mm focal length (on an APS-C camera) gave a wide enough angle to include my feet.

20140704-_DSC6253-Edit-medium Bob is taking a photo of the terrain towards the mine.

20140704-_DSC6280-Edit-medium Yet another view from the third (and last) area at the top that we visited.

20140704-_DSC6325-Edit-mediumA view looking back towards where we had come.  The terrain is quite rough; we only hiked 3.5 miles in 5.5 hours, though our moving time was about 3 hours.  There were cairns leading us out and back, but spotting them was difficult.  We would frequently stop for a minute or two and try to spot the next cairn.  We’d then have to figure out a reasonable looking path over to(wards) the cairn.

20140704-_DSC6331-Edit-medium We saw many agave flowers on our hike.  Near the edge of the leap, I noticed a flowering agave plant just below one of (the many) boulders.  That particular boulder as fairly close to the flowers and placed me and my camera about level with it.

20140704-_DSC6343-Edit-medium 20140704-_DSC6373-Edit-mediumExamples of some of the vegetation that we saw along the way.

20140704-_DSC6394-Edit-medium We came across a hole dug into the ground.

20140704-_DSC6397-Edit-medium A short ways further on, as we were hiking back, we saw what looked like a stone wall. We have no idea what its purpose might have been.

20140704-_DSC6400-Edit-mediumA lizard that stayed still long enough for me to get this shot.

20140704-_DSC6418-Edit-medium Views from the wash that we hiked on the way back…

20140704-_DSC6424-Edit-medium 20140704-_DSC6430-Edit-mediumThese rock formations are part of the climbing area known as the “Mine Area”.  I think these might be in Lower Looner Land.

20140704-_DSC6448-Edit-medium 20140704-_DSC6463-Edit-mediumA view of the mine.  It’s expanded a lot since I used to climb in the area.  There’s a lot of exploration and drilling going on elsewhere in the area too.  We saw thick black hoses snaking along the road and across the terrain.

20140704-_DSC6469-Edit-mediumAfter we finished our hike, drove as close as we could from the west side.  We hiked a short ways up one of the roads where I got this picture (stitched together from several shots).



This is what the west side of Apache Leap looked like on Saturday morning.  You can see the old road that we hiked in the foreground.

20140705-_DSC6508-Edit-Edit-2-medium A look back towards Picketpost Mountain in the early morning light.

20140705-_DSC6517-Edit-medium Ditto:

20140705-_DSC6532-Edit-medium A view of the southwest portion of Apache Leap.  (Though it’s possible that there’s more that can’t be seen here.)

20140705-_DSC6535-Edit-medium This is the northwest corner of Apache Leap.

20140705-_DSC6583-Edit-medium 20140705-_DSC6595-Edit-medium Views towards the north.

20140705-_DSC6601-Edit-medium A view of a balanced rock formation from the bottom of Upper Devil’s Canyon:

20140705-_DSC6625-Edit-medium A large and textured boulder in the wash at the bottom of Upper Devil’s Canyon:


Little Saddle Mountain Trail

Bob, Marilyn, and I hiked the Little Saddle Mountain Trail on Sunday.  This was my second time hiking it after the Sunflower Fire of 2012.  Marilyn, Joe, and I had attempted to hike it roughly six months after the fire, but had difficulty due to the trail disappearing under new growth and washed out areas.  The Little Saddle Mountain Trail is now part of the Arizona Trail; it was in very good condition.

It was cool and hazy during most of our hike.  There were still wildflowers growing alongside the trail and in and around the creek.  The haze forced me to take more flower pictures than I might otherwise.

We made it all the way up the the Saddle Mountain Trail.  Distance from the Trailhead to the Saddle Mountain Trail was about 4.2 miles.  Bob and I hiked a short ways on the Saddle Mountain Trail, bringing our distance up to 4.5 miles for a 9 mile hike total.  Total ascent was just over 2200 feet according to my GPS.  (Bob’s GPS showed an additional 200 feet or so of ascent.)20140511-_DSC1662-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1668-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1689-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1704-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1710-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1713-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1722-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1728-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1792-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1803-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1826-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1892-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1901-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1913-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1919-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1946-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1949-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1979-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC1997-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2003-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2009-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2024-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2030-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2045-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2102-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2117-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2123-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2126-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2138-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2150-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2153-Edit-medium 20140511-_DSC2156-Edit-medium

Friday Hike – Ballantine Cabin & Corral

Nancy, Bob, Janet, Allen, Savannah, and I did the Ballantine Cabin & Corral hike on Friday. When we were done, my GPS showed a distance of eleven miles with over 2300 feet of total ascent.

For many of my hikes, I simply use the GPS as a trip computer, however, for this one, we used it to find our way for several miles of the hike.  If you do this hike, I recommend using one of the GPS tracks for this hike as it is easy to miss a turn past Ballantine Cabin.

We started just after 7:00am; we got to see the sun rise as we drove to the trailhead.  This was one of the views as we hiked up the Pine Creek Loop.20140307-_DSC6181-Edit-medium Another view from the Pine Creek Loop.  We went up the steep way so that we’d have an easier descent on the way back.

20140307-_DSC6208-Edit-mediumAnother view from the Pine Creek Loop.

20140307-_DSC6214-Edit-medium The Pine Creek Loop is about 2.5 miles long.  The Ballantine Trail intersects the Pine Creek Loop halfway around the loop.  We took the Ballantine Trail out toward Boulder Flat.

20140307-_DSC6226-Edit-mediumMore areas of sun and shade.

20140307-_DSC6229-Edit-medium 20140307-_DSC6232-Edit-medium 20140307-_DSC6274-Edit-mediumOne of many interesting rock formations along the hike:

20140307-_DSC6292-Edit-medium This rock formation can be seen at the 2.5 mile point in the hike.

20140307-_DSC6325-Edit-medium Nancy, Savannah, Allen, Janet, and Bob:

20140307-_DSC6364-Edit-medium 20140307-_DSC6367-Edit-medium Bob, Janet, Allen, and Nancy.  (I’m sure Savannah is in there somewhere too.)

20140307-_DSC6373-Edit-mediumThis prominent rock formation is just on the other side of Camp Creek.


A fence can occasionally be seen while hiking.  I always marvel at the fact that there are fences out here. This hike is quite strenuous. The ranchers who constructed these fences must have been in excellent physical condition.

20140307-_DSC6397-Edit-medium Savannah hiking with Janet:

20140307-_DSC6418-Edit-medium A view of that same reddish rock formation from high on the hill that we had to climb to get to Ballantine Cabin.20140307-_DSC6421-Edit-mediumWe got our first view of the cabin shortly after reaching the top of the hill.  From there, we had to descend a steep(ish) trail with occasional loose rock.


A view of Ballantine Cabin. I didn’t take many photos of it this time and I had gotten more than a few from last year’s hike out to the cabin.

We continued on our way to the corral crossing through an opening in the fence in the process.  There was probably a barbed wire gate here at one time.20140307-_DSC6466-Edit-medium We saw a lot of black caterpillars on a short (1/2 mile to 1 mile) of the trail.  The caterpillars looked much darker than this; I used the +2 EV exposure for this photo in order to get a better look at it.

20140307-_DSC6477-medium We saw this large flattish slab of rock along the way.

20140307-_DSC6478-Edit-medium I think this is Fleabane:

20140307-_DSC6484-Edit-medium Savannah waits for the rest of the group to ascend the steep, thorny path on our way to the corral.

20140307-_DSC6499-Edit-medium An interesting rock formation somewhat past the corral.

20140307-_DSC6541-Edit-medium I took this photo from a large granite slab.

20140307-_DSC6568-Edit-medium This is the start of another steep, loose, and rocky descent.

20140307-_DSC6577-Edit-medium But the views are great from this location!  I took several photos here…

20140307-_DSC6598-Edit-medium I think this is the same reddish rock formation that we has passed earlier on the way out.

20140307-_DSC6607-Edit-medium A view of Red Mountain off in the distance.  Fountain Hills is off to the right.

20140307-_DSC6610-Edit-medium20140307-_DSC6628-Edit-medium I saw this dead tree as I was making my descent.



20140307-_DSC6643-Edit-medium A look back at where we had come from:

20140307-_DSC6646-Edit-medium Looking ahead again as I try to catch up with the rest of the group.

20140307-_DSC6655-Edit-medium Globemallow:20140307-_DSC6658-Edit-medium Nancy waits by the prominent rock formation at the intersection with the trail leading over to the cabin (which we had hiked earlier in the day).

20140307-_DSC6676-Edit-medium We had some big puffy clouds for a while, which made the sky more interesting.

20140307-_DSC6682-Edit-medium A saguaro at the top of a small rise on the way back.

20140307-_DSC6724-Edit-medium A look back as Bob, Allen, Savannah, Janet, and Nancy make their way along the Ballantine.

20140307-_DSC6730-Edit-medium 20140307-_DSC6736-Edit-medium We had some great views on the way back too…

20140307-_DSC6745-Edit-medium 20140307-_DSC6766-Edit-medium Brittlebush (and a great view):

20140307-_DSC6787-Edit-medium Another great view…

20140307-_DSC6793-Edit-medium A saguaro with lots of arms crowded together.  It has even more on the other side.  This saguaro is on the Pine Creek Loop with less than half a mile to go to the parking area.


Weaver’s Needle

A view of Weaver’s Needle from the Probrecito Staging Area, near Saguaro Lake.


A View of Four Peaks from the Lost Dutchman State Park

I took this photo in November, 2012 when we hiked Siphon Draw to the Flatiron.

I took this one near the end of the hike.  I looked at it when I was processing the other photos from that hike, back in November, but it kind of looked blah to me then, so I didn’t do anything with it.  I’ve been experimenting a bit more with setting the color temperature to match certain parts of the scene.  This is what I came up with.

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