Posts about Hiking, page 6 of 31.

The Park of Mazatzals: Retreat down Barnhardt

Dim morning light from the park

All things considered I had a decent night in the Mazatzals, camping at The Park. My tarp kept the wind from stealing too much of my heat and I never woke up from the cold. However, my sleeping pad burst early in the evening, and I had left the patch kit at home and had to make due with overlapping…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted October 13, 2016
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The Park of Mazatzals: North of Hopi Spring

Ascending right into pines and grass

Rock Creek Trail was likable enough beyond the rock pools. It climbed a short distance under the shade of low pines, swung around on a little ridge, and then swung back to cross Rock Creek above the pools over dry boulders. And then it started to climb up a ridiculous slope of gravel and manzanita…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted October 10, 2016
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The Park of Mazatzals: Climbing Rock Creek

Dark, gloomy clouds rising over the Mazatzals

Dark gray clouds boiled and churned above Barnhardt Canyon. Turning my back to them I pulled my gear out of the van and tried to put them out of my mind. Of course it would be cloudy - the forecast had promised rain and storms up there into the early hours. But it was supposed to clear up, and there…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted October 6, 2016
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DIY Gravity Setup with the Sawyer Mini

The basic water system for a gravity-based Sawyer filter

Early in 2016 I started using a Sawyer Mini as my primary water filter for hiking and backpacking. It was a huge weight savings, going from a one pound MSR down to a little thing that weighs a hair over two ounces. However, I immediately ran into two problems while using it. I couldn't come up with…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted October 2, 2016
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Experimenting with a Hammock

Perfect hammock site at Barbershop Springs

This year I've been experimenting a lot with new gear and new backpacking practices. After a few adventures with thirty or more pounds (including nine days on Isle Royale) I've shifted to an ultralight setup that sometimes sinks to a wonderful sub-five base weight. My water system has gotten lighter…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted September 29, 2016
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Ballantine to Boulder Flat

Blue skies over Ballantine Trailhead

The clear sky was a giant blue mirror reflecting back the heat of the rocky earth. At least, that's what it felt like as I stood near the van and looked over at Ballantine Trailhead. The hot air swam around me and my skin prickled with the promise of a sweaty afternoon. With a long sigh I walked…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted September 22, 2016
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Willow Springs Loop

A mostly full moon over First Water Trailhead

A mostly-full moon hung high over First Water Trailhead and my lonely car parked there. I gazed up at it, debating once again on simply turning around and driving back to a warm bed. My breath wheezed in and out through the congestion of a week-long chest cold as I stood there and let the darkness…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted September 7, 2016
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Pine Creek Loop and a Bail

A plain-looking Ballantine Trailhead

Cars, trucks, and semis roared out over the desert mere yards away from Ballantine Trailhead. I guess this is the alternative to long, rocky roads that usually prelude my desert hikes; parking next to a busy highway and doing my best to ignore the traffic. Wincing as my shoulders took on the heavy…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted September 1, 2016
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Silly Mountain with the Boys

A slowly waking sky over Superstition Ridgeline

Hiking with the boys has, for the most part, been limited to short outings in San Tan or South Mountain. There are a number of loops in these parks that are less than five miles with wide, easy trails that are perfect for them to wander along. I've tried taking them to the Superstitions a few times…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted August 21, 2016
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Mount Peeley Summit

Beautiful sign at the Mt Peeley Trailhead

Forest Road 201 was a long and winding ordeal, stretching north from AZ-87 and circling around numerous ridges and peaks on a slow climb up into the Mazatzals. All three of us were impatient to get on the trail. My dad and I had woken up at four this morning in order to meet Chris at six in Fountain…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted August 17, 2016
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  • Blogged about hiking | Short Visit to Coon Bluff.
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