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: