Superstition Wilderness posts, page 4 of 6.

Rainy Supe Loop: Cold Drop to JF Ranch

Hints of the too-distant sunrise

Ice cracked and shattered off my tent's rainfly in large, unreal chunks. If I had any question on how cold it was this morning before getting out of my comfortable sleeping bag the ice chunks gave me a clear image. This wasn't a bit of sparkly frost or some clothes that were left out and stiffened…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted January 7, 2016
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Rainy Supe Loop: Wet Slog up the JF Trail

Dark, cloudy skies over the JF Trail

Rain drummed hard on my poncho as I slogged south on the JF Trail in the heart of Superstition Wilderness. I was so sick of being damp and cold. Six hours of rain with only two brief, twenty-minute pauses had sucked away most of my motivation for this trip. I kept my head low, glancing around…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted January 5, 2016
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Rainy Supe Loop: Crossing Peter's Mesa

Dark blue-grey clouds over Bluff Spring Mountain

The day had such a promising start. There was some spitting rain over the night, just enough to lull me into some of the best sleep I've ever gotten while backpacking. I woke up before dawn and had my gear packed without waking up the two men I had shared a campfire and stories with last night. The…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted January 3, 2016
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Rainy Supe Loop: Fremont Saddle to Marsh Valley

Cloudy grey skies over Peralta Trailhead

With the cooler temperatures of the Arizona winter something unexpected happened - backpacking in the Superstition Wilderness suddenly sounded appealing. And I'm not talking about the eastern end, the green hills around Reavis Ranch and Campaign. The western and central Superstitions, the desert…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted December 30, 2015
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Mound Mountain - Highpoint of the Superstitions

Orion's Belt under a bright moon

Frost sparkled evilly on the tent's rainfly under the dim light of my headlamp. Against my will my teeth began to chatter ferociously and I shuffled in place in a vain attempt to warm up. It was terribly cold this morning in the eastern Superstitions, much colder than either Chris or I expected, and…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted November 22, 2015
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Robber's Roost Loop

Dim morning sky over Three Sisters

Trying to get motivated to go for a hike in the hot Arizona desert was tough after Isle Royale. Nine days of midwest weather on Lake Superior had spoiled me, and I still had sore knees and feet to heal. Chris finally convinced me to head out on a relatively easy loop, one that we had been eyeing up…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted October 26, 2015
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Wave Cave of the Superstitions

Dim light in the eastern skies

When I exited the small restroom at the Peralta Trailhead I was tempted to simply jump in the car and head back to Gilbert. For the last two days I had been suffering from a stomach bug that left me feeling drained and weak. In a fit of optimism I had drove the long hour to this trailhead an hour…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted August 28, 2015
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Moonrise Visit to Miner's Needle

Shade falling down Dacite Cliffs

Since moving to Arizona my hikes have taken on a predictable pattern: start in the early morning (sometimes in the predawn), hike until mid-day, and then escape back to civilization before it gets too hot. It's how one rolls when the afternoon temperatures soar into the triple digits and there is no…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted July 4, 2015
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Family Hike on the Hieroglyphic Trail

Hot morning sun over the trail

Katie and I stepped out of the van like a pair of well-oiled machines. She immediately got Noah out of his seat and started applying sunscreen while I took Thomas, our six-month old, and got him situated in the Tula. Within a few minutes the four of us were ready to go, and after a brief distraction…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted June 25, 2015
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Early Morning on Black Top Mesa

Light pollution from Phoenix

Another summer hike with Chris, another predawn stumble down a dusty trail in the Superstitions. We were on the Lost Dutchman, headed towards Parker's Pass from First Water Trailhead, and it was dreadfully early in the morning. There were two reasons for starting so early: I wanted to catch the…

  • Category Hiking
  • Posted June 13, 2015
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