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Tag: Tonto National Forest (page 1 of 8)

Friday Hike – Flatiron

Nora, Marilyn, Sara, and I hike to the top of the Flatiron and back on Friday.

Early morning photos looking up Siphon Draw towards the Flatiron were almost all back lit.  Sorting through my photos, I found that I liked the afternoon shots better. But this one was okay.  At this point, we’re nearly two miles in, close to the point where those who don’t go to the top will turn around.

At the top…

After looking over the edge of the Flatiron, we walked east for a short ways (probably less than a quarter mile) where we got this great view looking east. I took a few photos looking west from the top, but I didn’t find them to be especially compelling.

Prior to heading down, we stopped at a memorial commemorating the 2011 plane crash victims.

Continuing on, we got some great views of the Flatiron from the side. If you look closely, you can see someone near the edge.

Looking east again from the massive outcropping north of the Flatiron.

Looking ESE from this prominence.

Looking over the edge…

Nora, Sara, and Marilyn, making their way down.

Looking back up at the Flatiron. Several of the photos above were taken while making our way out to the point of the prominence left of the Flatiron.

We saw these flowers near the top of the slickrock area.

This is the slickrock area. Traction was pretty good, though care had to be taken because some of the rock has been smoothed by the water.

Slickrock area below; Flatiron above:

Globemallow:

We’re nearly done now – this is a good view of where we had been earlier in the day.

Sunday Hike – Deer Creek

Marilyn, Marilyn, Ben, Mike, Nick, and I hiked part of Deer Creek Trail #45 on Sunday.  We hiked nearly ten miles; Marilyn H and I were forced to turn around just before the five mile point after being stymied by a section of creek which didn’t have enough exposed rocks to allow for easy fording.

Deer Creek had the most water that I’ve ever seen in it.  It’s been mostly dry when I’ve seen it in the past.

At about the three mile point, we saw Davey Gowan’s grave. According to the accounts that I’ve read, he had a cabin elsewhere in the area, but was buried where he was found beside Deer Creek.

Friday Hike – Miner’s Needle Loop

For our hike on Friday, March 8, Sara, Marilyn, Ben, Marilyn, Mike, Nick, and I hiked the Miner’s Needle Loop in the Superstition Wilderness. Starting from Peralta Trailhead, we hiked the Dutchman Trail #104 and returned on Bluff Springs #235.  I took a brief detour on Whiskey Spring #238 while the others ate lunch.

Weaver’s Needle seen from the Whiskey Springs Trail.

From this vantage point on the Whiskey Springs Trail, I was able to see both Miner’s Needle, below, and Weaver’s Needle, above.

Sara, Marilyn, Nick, Ben, Mike, and Marilyn:

Sunday Hike – Ballantine in the Snow

On Sunday, Michael, Aldo, Marilyn, Ben, Marilyn, and I hiked the Pine Creek Loop and a portion of the Ballantine Trail. Early on, the trails were mostly clear of the snow that accumulated on Thursday and Friday of the previous week. Higher up, however, snow covered the trail in places.  We hiked 7.7 miles with a total ascent of 1800 feet.

Kevin, Michael, Aldo, Marilyn, Marilyn, and Ben:

Friday Hike – Cave Creek / Skunk Tank Loop

Heather, Marilyn, and I hiked in the Seven Springs area on Friday…

Sunday Hike – Crazy Horse Loop

I hiked a little over 13 miles on Sunday, visiting Peak 2972 along the way. This is the highest peak in the Usery Mountain range. (Pass Mountain, which is in Usery Mountain Park, is higher, but is part of the Goldfields.)

This was the view of Red Mountain as I neared the summit:

I saw another peak south of the peak I was on. It looked lower to me, but the presences of flags there suggested that it might actually be higher. I’m pretty sure that it’s Peak 2959.

This is a panorama from the summit:

A look back through the saguaros at the summit:

After reaching the summit, I did a mostly off-trail section which led down to this wash on the left. The wash was very relaxing; descending off-trail from the summit, prior to this wash, not so much.

Another view of Red Mountain. I think I got this shot from the Saguaro Trail while looking for a mine. (I never found the mine, but I only left the track for the loop that I was on for about a quarter mile.)

I think I was on the Twisted Sister Trail (which is part of the Hawes Trail System) when I got this shot of Red Mountain near sunset.

Another shot near sunset…

Sunday Hike – Usery Area Explorations

Marilyn and I did a hike in the Usery Mountain area on Sunday. We parked in the lot next to the western gate of Bulldog Canyon, then crossed the road and hiked west of the road. It’s a very scenic area. I want to do a longer hike in this area someday.

Sunday Hike – Bronco Trail #245

Marilyn and I hiked the Bronco Trail on Sunday afternoon – 9.8 miles with nearly 1800 feet of total ascent.

Sunday Hike – Spur Cross Limestone Loop

Marilyn and I went out to Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area on Sunday. Marilyn hiked the Elephant Mountain Loop. I hiked out on Spur Cross and then hiked the Limestone Trail. At the end of it, we met up and hiked most of the way back together, first on Elephant Mountain, then Tortuga, and Spur Cross.  I ended up hiking Metate and Towhee before returning.  Total distance for my hike was about 9.5 miles. Marilyn hiked 7 miles.

Sunday Hike – Saddle Mountain Trail #91

Marilyn and I hiked the Saddle Mountain Trail from the Mormon Grove Trailhead. I hiked the entire trail, including the small loop at the end. On the way back, I hiked a bit of Sheep Creek Trail. The loop at the end is not worth doing – there was a lot of bushwhacking and it was slow going. Sheep Creek Trail was easier to hike and very pretty too – I wish I would have spent my time on that trail instead of doing the short (but long in terms of time) loop at the end of Saddle Mountain.

I ended up with 8.9 miles for this hike.

This flower looks like globe mallow, but is somewhat smaller and redder than the globe mallow flowers that I’m accustomed to seeing at lower elevations. It was identified by someone on HAZ as a Trans-Pecos Morning Glory.

That’s Mount Ord in the distance. We had views of Mount Ord throughout our hike. Marilyn also found that she had a cellphone signal when Mount Ord was in view.

Indian Paintbrush:

Both Marilyn and I liked the small mountain with the exposed rock.

This is Saddle Mountain after which the trail is named.

We encountered this snake on our way back. It’s not a rattlesnake – I’ve been told that it’s a Western Patch-nosed Snake. Marilyn observed it’s tongue flicking in and out of its mouth, but beyond that we didn’t observe any movement.

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