Backpacking posts, page 3 of 8.

Copper Camp Loop: Road to Copper Camp Creek

Early morning light on Davenport Peak

Pale light began to seep through the morning sky, throwing the Mazatzal mountains into sharp relief in the distance. It wouldn't take long for my route, sitting far to the west and blocked from the sunrise by those mountains, to be in full sunlight. I paused and stretched and looked at the…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted May 1, 2017
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Mazatzal Wilderness Dreaming

The idea of conquering the Mazatzal Wilderness has slowly taken over my daydreams and random internet browsing. And why shouldn't it? Hiking in Arizona has not been as free-ranging as my Michigan adventures, thanks to hostile terrain and less-than-amiable property owners, and exploring designated…

  • Category Personal
  • Posted February 13, 2017
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Camping on Battleship

Morning sun over lower La Barge

When Chris and I talk about going out on a hike together, it always starts with a general idea of where we want to go and quickly devolves into long phone calls with dozens of possible destinations discussed. Weather forecasts, trail conditions, endurance, points of interest, time constraints are…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted January 8, 2017
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2016 was Okay

As 2016 draws to a close, I've been more reflective than normal about how the year went. In a lot of ways it's been a good one. Work is going great, especially considering how I was thrust onto a brand new team using unfamiliar technologies in early January. My boys are growing up fast and I can…

  • Category Personal
  • Posted December 30, 2016
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Overnight at Brown's Peak

Brown's Peak poking up in the distance

Chris, Kirsty, and I paused on the trail to Brown's Peak for a long breather. It was warm this afternoon, unnecessarily warm for this late in the year, and all three of us were hauling a lot of weight. I was in the lead with a solid fifty-pounds plus (mostly water) and Chris was a close second. When…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted October 30, 2016
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What Kind of Hiker Am I?

Even after living in and exploring the wilderness of Arizona for two years I still consider myself a Michigan hiker. It's only fair, in some ways: my hunger for the outdoors started in the Upper Peninsula and I spent seven years up there hunting waterfalls and old growth and forgotten places. Two…

  • Category Personal
  • Posted October 24, 2016
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Cave Loop Overnight in the Supes

Late afternoon sun over Peralta Trailhead

Late afternoon sun heated up Peralta Trailhead as Chris and I stepped out of his car and pulled our packs on. The temps were in the upper eighties thanks to a storm-ridden cold front that had been rolling through the area this week, and it felt surprisingly reasonable out. I might be singing a…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted October 20, 2016
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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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