Stories of Upper Peninsula Hiking

Jacob is crazy passionate about hiking in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. From the worn outcroppings of the Huron Mountains to the swamps and old growth forest deep within the Peshekee Highlands, he's either been there or is planning an adventure right now. One of Jacob's particularly fond hiking goals involved tracking down Keweenaw waterfalls.

Ives Lake, surrounded in color

Back to Sheep Bridge

A quick descent along a deep tributary

Ten miles sat between me and the trailhead as I began my descent from the unplanned bivouac site. My original plan, which had started yesterday, was to do the Midnight Mesa Loop, a 36 mile adventure in the central Mazatzal Wilderness, in a single day, and I would have made it if it wasn't for some…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted November 25, 2018
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Red Hills Romp

Easy, cleared trail beyond the creek

Hopping across Wet Bottom Creek was lovely, clear water trickling around the red rocks in the most scenic of fashions. On the far bank was a large cairn and wide path, an open invitation to continue forward on Midnight Trail on my long walk around Midnight Mesa, and yet I paused. It was just after…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted November 19, 2018
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Around Midnight Mesa

Early morning light on the Mazatzals

Sheep Bridge towered above my vehicle, steel foundation rising dimly in the starry sky, a stoic sentinel guarding passage across the Verde River and into the wilderness on the other side. I shuffled humbly underneath its watch, collecting my gear and checking everything twice, more in an effort to…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted November 14, 2018
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Butcher Jones Trail

A wide, wild trailhead on the bach

There are few trails that take advantage of the Salt River as it meanders between Superstition and Four Peaks Wilderness, with most of the recreational focus on watercraft either on or between the reservoirs. I had already taken the boys to one area, Coon Bluff, and we had had a great time climbing…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted October 23, 2018
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Two Hikes in Show Low

Three little hikers on a dirty path

With uncomfortable summer temperatures in the Phoenix valley, Katie and I decided to take advantage of a long-standing invite from some of her relatives up in Show Low, a small town that sits above the Mogollon Rim and is surrounded by pine trees and mild temperatures. The drive was a small…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted October 17, 2018
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Rim Trail and Aztec Peak

Early start in the Sierra Ancha

While sleep was hard to find, perched on a hammock near the Pueblo Canyon overlook, watching the moonlight play over the Sierra Ancha cliffs and Cherry Creek valley was simply breath-taking. I didn't begrudge the multiple times I woke up from a rustling branch or distant twig break much - they gave…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted September 19, 2018
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Center Mountain to Pueblo Canyon Overlook

Big trees along FR 410

Tall pines shushed in the light breeze over the narrow two-track, and I practically had to pinch myself to make sure that I wasn't dreaming about the Huron Mountains of Michigan. I was in the Sierra Ancha range, still in Arizona, and I didn't even have to drive all the way to the Mogollon Rim to get…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted August 25, 2018
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Sheep Bridge Loop

Early morning light over Sheep Bridge and the Verde

Sheep Bridge, and the greenery around the Verde River, did not look far enough away. Sunlight was beginning to leak into the five o'clock sky and I had already walked five miles along the Dutchman Grave Trail this morning, yet from this saddle my progress looked minuscule. I sighed in frustration. I…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted August 3, 2018
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Barnhardt - Sandy Saddle Loop

Early morning light on Barnhardt Canyon

When June rolled around I had a startling revelation: it was almost halfway through 2018 and I hadn't stepped foot in the Mazatzal Wilderness. That's a dirty shame. With time constraints holding me back from doing anything too intense I came up with an easy day hike starting from Barnhardt Trailhead…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted July 12, 2018
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Hackberry Springs via Needle Vista

Boys playing along the wash

Hackberry Spring is a great destination for a family hike. It's a short distance from the First Water horse lot, a good portion of it is in the shade, and there is a pleasant spot to rest (and play) near the spring. The only annoying thing is that we've done this hike… four times now? Maybe…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted June 15, 2018
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