11-16-2013 Today we took Mom Maybelle on a 4 hour tour that lasted 13 hours. We started looking for the Black Canyon Trail TH’s further north of Phoenix and was doing great till we got north of Bumble Bee and thought we could go by dirt road to Bloody Basin. We did find Cleator but then lost my sense of direction to find the way point on Bloody Basin Rd. Must have been east. We ended up in Crown King thinking about a TH we saw a few years ago at the lookout, Whoops, not it, Castle Creek Wilderness TH. OK, now that we are here do we want to go back the way we came, go to Wickenburg or Prescott? We chose Prescott down the Senator Hwy. This proved to be a bad choice. 29 miles of bad, ugly and just ok dirt roads with 96 year old Mom in the back seat. What were we thinking! We should have went back the way we came. Oh well, next time.
We did find the trailhead on Table Mesa Rd. Along with more people totting guns than I ever wanted to be in the vicinity of. One sign said there was a pumpkin shoot nearby but it could have been an old sign. We started thinking about how Phoenix has grown in the last 25 years so we guessed that this is where people practice handling their guns now. Scary!
Many years ago we used to go down Table Mesa Rd to get to Lake Pleasant. Not any more unless you want to walk for a quite a distance. It’s gated off and now you have to pay a fee to use the area. This is messed up! Maybe when the lake is full the water will come back here.
We had already found the trailhead for Rock Springs several years ago so we drove on to the Bumble Bee exit off I17. It didn’t take long before we found the trailhead of Gloriana Mine TH. Pretty large parking lot. Then on to find where the trail crosses Bumble Bee Rd. 34.15000N 112.15200W. Wasn’t hard to find as it is just over the bridge but if you pass the town of Bumble Bee you’ve gone too far. As we drove on we encountered some friendly beast who didn’t mind sharing the road with us.
This was the next sign we found on the BCT north of Bumble Bee. Way too funny. Is this for the cows or cyclist cuz I know I don’t hike fast enough to warrant a sign.
Well, the rest of the story rest on the road to Crown King, Senator Hwy., Prescott and home to Phoenix. What a day. 200 miles long.