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Spur Cross Day Hike
Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area
March 25, 2017
by Gabrielle McConnell
  GPS Map 
by Jim Buyens

All 15 of us had a fantastic hike at Spur Cross. The weather cooperated (never above 74), the flowers were out in full force, the scenery was ‘Arizona lush’, and the natural camaraderie all made for a great day.

Group picture. [photo by Monika H.]
Dave, Marilyn, Melissa, Kenneth, Rebecca, Amy, Gabe, Jim, Nicole , Kari, Lin, Diva, Carl, Danielle

The scenery was incredible, lush by Arizona standards, with wildflowers all over the place.

Cactus and flowers. [photo by Monika H.]

Interestingly enough, since I was last at Spur Cross, several benches were placed on the trail. But of course, we had to sit on the old saguaro for a little break. It’s what we do!

Taking a Break. [photo by Diva]
Gnarled Saguaro. [photo by Lin]

There is a solar oasis along the Metate trail, and it is always fun to stop and check out the water lilies.

Solar Oasis. [photo by Lin]

After the Solar Oasis we took the Spur Cross trail up the Tortuga loop. This was a bit of a climb, but as Diva pointed out, a great workout. We then joined the Tortuga trail and hiked down towards Dragonfly. As we hiked down the Tortuga trail, it was like hiking through a green meadow, everything was so lush and green that one might be forgiven for thinking we were in Switzerland ... just kidding, but it was lovely.

Walking through ‘Swiss Alps’, Arizona style. [photo by Lin]
Lush Scenery. [photo by Kari]
Creek view. [photo by Lin]

We continued down the Dragonfly Trail and into the Jewel of the Creek Preserve. This is a gorgeous place. We’re so very lucky to have it close to Phoenix.

Beautiful creek. [photo by Monika]

Bridge jumping could be a new activity on our hikes. Having fun was part of the game!

Fun on the bridge. [photo by Lin]

After playing in the water we made our way back to the parking lot. The hike was just right at 6 miles and by noon we were hungry. Most of us went to Tonto Bar and Grill for a wonderful lunch al fresco. In thinking about lunch, I had failed to consider that Carefree had a big event on that same Saturday morning and most restaurants were booked. But, not to worry, Rebecca worked her magic and secured this excellent restaurant for us.

Relaxing at Lunch. [photo by Lin]
Relaxing at Lunch. [photo by Lin]

Thanks to Monika for making sure we did not lose anyone, Jim for doing the stats, Dave for helping navigate and especially, a Big Thanks to everyone for enjoying the day together!

Supplemental Report
by Jim Buyens

Thanks again for leading this hike, Gabe, and thanks to everyone else for coming along. I haven’t been able to do a lot of club hiking lately and really appreciated being back and seeing you all again. It was great.


Jim’s Hike Statistics
Total Distance:6miles
Starting Time:8:26AM
Moving Time:2:52hrs:min
Stopped Time:0:32hrs:min
Finishing Time:11:51AM
Avg. Speed Moving:2.1mph
Avg. Speed Overall:1.8mph
Starting Elevation:2,373ft
Minimum Elevation:2,192ft
Maximum Elevation:2,603ft
Total Ascent:838ft
Starting Temperature:56°
Finishing Temperature:74°
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Arizona Trailblazers Hiking Club, Phoenix, Arizona
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updated March 30, 2017