Circlestone, Reavis grave,Reavis Ranch, Az

001-DSCN1020 1-DSCN1034   A trip I have been wanting to do for a long time so finally the time has come! Connie, June, Nancy & I headed out from Pnx, it took 2 1/2 hrs to get to Rogers Trough & 200 miles later. Temps were in the 70s for the high & 29 to 32 for low.
First we stopped off at Reavis Grave as the girls had not been there before. The cross had been redone & looked like a postcard. Manzanita, wall flowers & Fuchsia were in bloom to set the scene. 007-DSCN1028 010-DSCN1031 127-DSCN1187 128-DSCN1188 004-DSCN1023
Our goal was to find Circlestone which the next morning we set out to hike up Fireline Trail. It was right on target that I had down loaded on my gps so here is the coordinates to help anyone else out. The cairn was large on fireline trail at this time – N 33.48761 W 111.13240. The trail up to Circlestone was steep but cairns were placed so no issues. N 33.47777 W 111.13430. This is also located NE of Mount Mountain the highest Mt in the Superstition’s. When you read about Circlestone there are a few theories but most agree it is a ancient solstice & equinox sun watch station, ceremonial site. Built by ancient Sinagua which dates back to 1250AD. This is also called Az Stonehenge, we have a few around the state.042-DSCN1078 049-DSCN1090
051-DSCN1093040-DSCN1076Circlestone in Superstition MtsThe next day we did a day hike to the ranch which was only 1/4 mi from where we camped, to my surprise all the apple trees were in bloom! Oh my gosh I thought most of them had died off since they are quite old, so this fall there should be plenty of apples. I miss the old ranch house, only a foundation stands, vinca still come up around the steps, old machinery still lay around. I had seen the place before it burned down but no matter what its still beautiful! We also met up with a solo hiker that was doing section hikes of the Arizona Trail, she was a stewart from passage 40b, I believe her name was Liz Good. 101-DSCN1155077-DSCN1126


The day only gets better as once we got back to camp I ran into a gal from Flagstaff, Deb Linda. We did a trip in Colorado a few years ago, so we got caught up on what was happening & hope to hook up with her for a hike in the future, it’s such a small world! We met 2 Arizona Trail Hikers coming out but only got one name which was Porcupine- Kara from Alaska.
Be aware of bee’s we had to go by 1 nest coming & going, rattlesnakes are out do to the warm days.054-DSCN1098035-DSCN1070 This time of year it gets very cold at night so be prepared for that as day temps you sweat like its summer and freeze like its winter! Also best to be aware of unusual activity from animals as at the trailhead mentioned rabid fox in area. Here are a few flowers & bushes that were in bloom, fernbush, catclaw acacia, juniper, oak, ponderosa pine, western wallflower,firecracker, desert marigold, thistle, fleabane, tidy tips, tufted evening primrose, verbena, love grass.

Take time to check out the rest of the pictures on the media, great time by all!




2016 Superstitions- Apache Lake “Boulder Canyon to 1st water Trailhead

DSCN0454First backpack for the New Year. Starting off the season with a Rookie Carolyn Mahon Cope, first time with a backpack on & she did great, also Glenda Cope, Connie Simmons, Nancy Vail Colleen Hunt & Judy Eidson. The Rookie was promised a Paris hike, this is what it’s called from Hikengirls nice & easy- like a hike where you can hike out incase you run out of trail ale ;).

Well this wasn’t quite that way, but regardless there were plenty of water, snack, rest & veiw breaks.




DSCN0536It was slow going as Boulder Canyon got its name for a reason! Most of the 1st day was cloudy which gave a relief due to no shade trees & very exposed. The evening temps were chilly but had a nice fire, it did get below freezing during the night.


Day 2 We decided to hike to next location over by Hackberry Spring, where we found lots of boyscouts which we expected due to MLK holiday But found a nice location away from all the noise. We had not set up camp yet before Glenda Cope had tripped & hurt her wrist. Wow just got my Solo Wilderness 1st Aid in Nov & already got to practiced it twice. My diagnosed was correct she fractured her wrist. So I did what I was trained & did a line & traction which pain level went from a 11 to 7. That made us happy along with Advil, cold water bags, & ace bandage with a nice sling. It was to late in the day to hike out, so made her as comfortable as we all could including a bit of wine & she was set for the evening.


We had one more incident which is where Connie spilled boiling water on her leg!20160116_190424

Day 3 I’ve hiked all the trails in the Sups but years since I hiked out to the horse parking lot. This is not on any maps, & I could not remember if it was more bouldery than the hike up to Garden Valley & 1st water but knew it was shorter so we went for it & it was the right decision. We all felt we needed a burger & beer at Dirt Water Springs.
The doctor on Monday confirmed Glenda did have a fracture, which as of now she is wearing a brace. Connie’s leg is healing. The Rookie got a 1st hand on a Paris hike, not quite what she visualized, but she said she will be back !



January 5th, 2015 First hike of the year is always amazing in the Superstitions. Started hiking the Peralta Trail to Freemont Saddle around 10. The terrain is always rocky but that is what gives the Superstitions so much character. Along the trail we met Mike, a volunteer, trimming the bushes along the path. Later, at the Saddle he showed up again just in time to show us how to get to Geronimo’s Cave. It’s about 1 mile from the Saddle. You can also access it from the lower trail on the Peralta. What a great lookout place for Geronimo! You can see in all directions. No wonder he liked it here. Almost stepped on a Bull snake on the way back. Continued over the Saddle to find a compact, icy, snowy path. With perseverance we were able to get down to an altitude with little evidence of snow. However, the trail was in dire need of maintenance. We camped at the base of Weaver’s Needle. We thought the creek would be running but could only find water in the holes. Our water filter, Sawyer Squeeze Water Filtration System, quit working. Nothing would come through it even though it worked on several trips in the past and it has always been cleaned out after every trip. The weather couldn’t have been better even though it was 82 degrees hiking out.

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Coffee Flats & Red Tank Superstitions Mt- snow storm‏

temps 28 to 70’s, nancy vail, june storment, judy eidson, 2-19- to 2-21 2013
Not a long hike, but a beautiful one. Knowing there was a storm coming in what a better place to go but the sups.   There won’t be a lot of detail on the is hike as pic’s are louder than words in this case. Beautiful wet snow on the saguaros, hummingbird holding on to her nest for dear life. Fun snow storm in the Superstion Mts valentines, bp Sups, 2-2013 042 valentines, bp Sups, 2-2013 047 valentines, bp Sups, 2-2013 061 valentines, bp Sups, 2-2013 064 valentines, bp Sups, 2-2013 066making snowman, & water running in every trail & creek near by.

Peralta Master Map/ Largest Saguaro in AZ

Peralta Master Map/ Largest Saguaro in AZ

Nancy, Jane & Judy  19 miles loop 40’s to 70’s

We were to do Dogie & Sycamore Canyon but do to the cold front that was bringing in snow, wind & rain we changed our plans to Superstitions. Jane came down from Flagstaff, we had never met but knew a mutual friend & had conversations over the phone. Since she was tired of the cold & wind this was ideal for her. Jane was trying out her new Gossamer backpack, Nancy with her new Exped Synmat UL7, & I my new schnozzel bag that works with the mat. Each of us loved our new purchase & the comfort outweighed the cost. Water started to show up near Whiskey Springs, & pots here & there to La Barge Trough. It was a perfect time of the year for the cactus to be in full bloom, beautiful! Once we got to our camp Nancy found out that she wore one old Keen & one new Keen boot, thank goodness it was for the right feet! We ooed & ah’d over Jane’s extremely light weight BP. She had a Big Sky 2 person tent, mat, sleeping bag etc & all fit very nicely. I got to demonstrate how my schnozzel bag was a compression bag for my clothes & also filled up our mats with ease. It had predicted rain thru the evening so we nestled our tents in the brush/trees & tied them off as they were predicting high winds with 60% chance of rain, & it did hit, but we all stayed dry. Nancy & I had made Ray Jardine’s quilt last year for our trip to Hermit Canyon so with the new matt, my new Reactor from Sea & Summit stayed extra warm. (now we need to make Ray’s bomber hat). Sat morning we had heavy clouds a good day to do our day trip to find the Peralta Master Map. (the story behind Peralta Master Map is detailing the location of 18 gold mines but others believe they are Indian Petroglyphs) The volunteer ranger at the trailhead advised us don’t look at the springs & do exactly what the book tells us, which to my surprised after looking for them 3 other times & was able to locate them. Nancy & Jane had hiked over to the Charliebois Spring & came across 3 hikers that advised the location of another set of Pet’s back by Bull Pass, so made note for the next time. Bruce was the owner of , Cameron (wore a fun kilt) the owner of the cutest goat named Winston, he had carried in 13#’s & was in training, then Mike, & 2 dogs. They had come back after 3 yrs of caching some goodies & wanted to see if they were still there, so departed our ways & went to show the girls my findings. My day was complete, by the time we got back to camp it had pelted ice & rain & was time to find some wood for our campfire. The rain moved on & we were in a paradise of cardinals. The 3 guys was making their way back to their camp when they stopped off to give us one of their caches, yea who would ever think we would be gifted with happy hour! That night was a little cooler as Nancy did not sleep as warm, I was cozy maybe do to the reactor, Jane was fine in her tent. The clouds had lifted & was predicting a warmer day. It was fun swapping dehydrated recipe (such as dehydrated yogurt, black bean chili, super-terrific bars & spackle), & hiking stories with a new hiking friend. Never understand why people that like the wilderness has to be such slops, so I went around & picked up a lot of broken glass they shot up. Was not able to take out the cans that was left, but maybe if each hiker would pick up just one it will be cleared up by the next time they go back. We set off on Bluff Springs Trail to find what the internet is saying is the largest Saguaro in the state at this time. It is not difficult to locate, the Saguaro is Az state flower. I would like to see the 50 arms in bloom, but not sure I will be back in June. Fun by all!

p.s. Jane Jackson “Clamity Jane” & Tom Conover “silver” completed  the AT Sept, 2013 6 months to complete, yea you two!!


Squaw Canyon, Superstition Wilderness 2-2012

Squaw Canyon Superstitions 2-2012
June, Connie, Judy backpacked Once again out to investigate another canyon in the wilderness. 46 degrees perfect hiking weather. & decided to go in from Canyon Lake Trail head as it would be less crowded. I had not been in from this direction for years so it was time.

We always went down La Barge Creek in the past, but do to the trail being so well define on trail #103 Boulder Canyon Trail we decided to take this route. A long exposed trail up & over the mountain so was glad to get to the creek with brush & some shade. The scenery is always breath taking with Weavers in the distance & Battleship Mt.  We stopped off at Indian Paint Mine to take a few pictures & continued on. Water was running nice & clear at 2nd water, but Boulder Creek was dry, it had snowed the week before so was a bit surprised not to see the creek running  in places only pot holes had mossy water. But you could see the land was enjoying the bit of moisture, the poppies, sqoripine weed, vetch, even the lupine were starting to bloom. I love this area with all the boulders, shadows & vegetation & less people do to them not liking rock hopping. We made camp below the Malapais Mt for 2 nights as this was the place we were going to investigate. How wonderful the shadows were in the evening as it looked bright yellow, we had a glimpse of Weavers from camp, pots of water up canyon. The first evening were down in the low 40’s but by the 3rd day we had ice on the water bottles, but quickly warmed up. Squaw Canyon was interesting as it’s the back side getting up to Peters Mesa. Found the trail up the canyon the following day which took a large part of it. We only came across 4 backpackers in the 2 days that we had camped. All so very interesting & none from AZ. Squishy “Mike” from Alaska, Carl from San Diego, which had extreme amount of knowledge of the Sierra’s so will be helpful when we take a week or more this summer out to Calif & a father & son from Maine & Mass, they were here to do a week trip to scout out the area. This was a 20 mile week end, & was not ready to go back as there is so much to scout out. We ended our trip at Canyon Lake bar & grill.

Superstitions, Boulder Canyon

12-27-2011, Superstitions, Boulder Canyon


    We were out to find the perfect “Backpacker 101” trail to accommodate all the people who had never backpacked and wanted to try.  Setting off down the Dutchman Trail #104 and taking the Boulder Canyon Trail #103 to where the Needles Canyon intersected was perfect!  Just long enough at about 6 miles long, just strenuous enough to make your ankles ache going over boulders and way too beautiful with Weaver’s Needle in the horizon.  The creeks were full of water with minor waterfalls everywhere that tickled the ears and stimulated the curiosity to want to see more.  Our campsite was perfect.  Lots of wood and water and level locations to put up several tents.  Not much wildlife but found several species of footprints while hiking down Needles Canyon.  The hike down Needles Canyon to Bull Pen Trail was only about 3 miles but took several hours as there was no trail and cris-crossing the creek took up time.  At waypoint 33.27. 59.1, we found a small campfire ring that someone had left a beautiful “Fire King” milky green glass coffee cup.  Hadn’t seen one of those in years!  Perfect condition.  Why someone would bring a glass coffee cup back here is beyond me.  Total hike was 4.4 miles back to camp and took us 5 hours.  There were several places to watch where the canyon split.  I think all went to the right. 


    Judy only took her homemade backpacking quilt and put on most of her clothes but with the temp. at night hovering the low 30’s it became necessary to put on an emergency blanket and silk liner.  Second night was better with a tent.


12-29-2011, played around all morning practicing knots and using bird tweeter to bring in the almost non-existent birds.  Only one came close.

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Pinto Creek Trail 213

Judy writes “We are down to the last 2 hikes to do on the Superstition wilderness map. This is a abandon trail now (Trail 213 Pinto Creek towards Horrell), we had the option to come into the trail 2 different ways.

Because we had been on this road for Cuff Button we decided to come back this way again & it was closer to where we lived. Now we needed to get on rd 306 and drive acouple miles farther, the rd was no different the 1st half, rocky & catclaw to dodge. We carcamped at the beginning of our trailhead and did a day hike to Campaign Creek where you meet up with trail 256, N33 31’54.3 W111 04’42.1. It was not a bad hike other than finding trail over and around Bear Springs but once up on the ridge we were able to fine rock cairns. Wild flowers & hedgehogs were in full bloom. Mt Spring had old artifacs laying around making it a kodak moment, the pipe was broken & no water in the area that we found. We had lunch at Campaign Creek that was flowing well & stopped off at Morman Corral Spring that fills into a large tank, toads were jumping in & out with a cheerful croak. Beacause of carcamping supper were steaks complements of Colleen. This was April hike so weater was perfect.

Frog Tank Superstition Wilderness

Judy writes “This will be short, Yea! the last hike I needed to do to finish all the trails on my Superstition Map. 4-14,15,16 2011. We started at the same time as the Az Backpackers were going in to Reavis Ranch, met Lucky.

I belong to the group but have never hiked with them, so will put that on my to do list.
Weather was beautiful, lots of Chia, poppy’s, & other wildflowers. Found a great place to camp near Frog Tank Spring. 4-15 day hiked approx 10 miles near Angel Basin, we were fortunate as much of the time this creek is dry, but we had plenty of water. We took pictures of a bear print & had it verified with Cousin Bob with AGF. We took video of one of the largest rattlesnakes we have come across. We tried to give him lot of leeway but he was very curious what we were doing. We had a nice lunch break as we soaked our feet & took pictures of again one of the largest type cactus in the area. The trail was not as bad as my book described, but possible someone had come in and cleared a portion of the catclaw out of the way. We checked out an Indian Ruin which was not much left. We have been experimenting with tarps the last few backpack trips, this has worked out well, but also we didnot have rain or wind. The trip going out was easy as mostly down hill. Lunch to celebrate at Tortilla Flats.

Rock Creek Eastern Superstions

Judy writes Rock Creek, Eastern Superstitions Down to 3 left to do in the Superstitions, Yea!!

Nancy, Colleen, Judy & June was dropped off on road 650 by husband – Possum. It started off knowing it was only a rock cairn at the trailhead due to the trail had been abandon many years prior. But due to it been on my original map that I was going by to finish the trails in the Superstitions I had to do it.

As we were approaching my way point we came across a cowboy with his 8 Walker Blue Tick Hounds, that was in training for Mt Lion hunting. This was a experience for all of us, as we were in a remote area & it was like a western movie. He was very interesting & said he had been in every trail in the Superstitions & the route we would be taking was treacherous as him & his mule had taken a few years back. He asked if it wouldn’t be better to go to Haunted Canyon instead. I mentioned to him that trail had been done & this had to be finished to hi light my map, he seemed to understand the challenge & put a comfort tone in his voice & said we would be fine just follow the ravine till we got to the Rock Creek & it would take us into Miles Ranch. Without a lot of way points that was reassuring, as we were looking for the rock cairn I found a heads up penny in the middle of know where, so now I knew it was going to be a great hike. No rock cairn at where we started so made a small one & took off down the ravine. Yes it was steep, rocky in places but I so enjoyed the not well traveled trail, the scenery, huge boulders & clear stream running. Walking sticks, gaiters & leather gloves came in very handy. . We had lunch at the corral found the cement water trough mentioning 1-39 Even though it was more of a scramble, & brushy we did hit cat claw in sections that was unavoidable, after the old corral it was worst. The history in this area was another reason I so enjoyed this section, as I imagined what it must have been like. Once you approach Bull Basin a nice camp area with water & the trail becomes a trail, & it was a breeze to hike into Miles Ranch. We got in about dusk, so we averaged 1 hr a mile. After looking back on this trail vs. Spencer Trail which is the trail next to this one, I enjoyed this one much better. Check out 3-17-10 story. Now our real surprise came, 2 weeks before we had gone to a AZT meeting in Superior & decided to check out Miles Ranch area, so we decided to cache, some whiskey, wine, water, food & any thing left over in our packs that was not used for the car camp to make it easier for us for this backpack as we still are doing Wildcat & Cuff Button Trails & had 4 more days on this trip. To our shock 2 different caches, 1 hidden with tree bark, the other literly buried under dirt ( in coffee & tupperware ) in a totally different location had been dug up or missing. The joke for this trip was some hunter was enjoying our whiskey, water, newpaper & toliet paper. For some reason the cache that had our food in coffeee cans our bottles of wine was left alone, just opened with a knife, & placed in plastic bag that we had covered it with before shoveling dirt on top. The bag on it was Patient Bag from a hospital, & I wrote on the outside, plz do not remove backpacker coming thru. It gave us the weebe geebe’s at 1st knowing there was no vehicle there when we cached. I decided it could have been a person with a metal detector that found it as it all had metal someplace in the cache, & lots of history in this area for people to scout out. This is also Javaline hunting season.Fri we had a day off as we were waiting for Connie to show up on Sat to finish the hikes with us. Colleen & I did 4 miles of Wildcat to the fence line, this is not on my map nor do I need to do it to finish the trails. But this would make a loop out of Cuff Button to Oak Flats & back to Miles Ranch. In the meantime a storm was being predicted & June & Nancy decided to move our tents to the old barn, got dry firewood prepared & made a nice home while we wait for Connie to show up. What a great place, we found metal sheeting to make a fire on top of & one for the side to radiate heat which would not destroy the ground. It did rain on & off so once Connie showed up we decided to do just a short hike to Paradise Trail as she came with the weather report of heavy rain & high winds. We were so glad we decided to spend a day in or around the barn because the real down pour & heavy rain was just beginning. It was comfortable, & by Sunday it was not letting up so decided the Cuff Button Trail would need to wait & we headed home after having lunch at Superior- Dos Hernandez.”