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Aylors Caballo One-Way Hike
Superstition Wilderness
February 7, 2004
by Ted Tenny
  GPS Map 
Bill Zimmermann
Lunch and Key Exchange south of Palomino Mountain.

“We can see you,” Ted announced on the radio as the northbound hikers rounded a bend and walked toward the picnic area.

We had started from Peralta Trailhead on a cool, crisp morning with lots of sunshine.

Geronimo Cave tops the adjacent ridgeline.

Fremont Saddle was our biggest climb of the day as we saw Geronimo Cave and Calico Rock on our way up.

The southbound hikers had started earlier from First Water Trailhead, walked faster, and met us a half mile south of Aylors Caballo Camp.

Calico Rock cheers us on our way to Fremont Saddle.

Weaver’s Needle is a volcanic plug. From the north or south it looks like a gigantic stone phonograph needle, with very steep sides then tapered at the top. But when you see it from the west, it’s a much more intricate structure.

Weaver’s Needle from Piñon Camp.

The main part is a mitten with the thumb separate from the other fingers. All around the base of the mitten are rock decorations – brightly colored boulders eroded into fantastic shapes.

A dozen people signed up for the joint outing with the Sierra Club and the Arizona Trailblazers Hiking Club. We took the express route on this scenic walk between First Water and Peralta trailheads. Highlights included world class views of Weaver’s Needle and the Superstition Ridgeline, colorful Palomino Mountain, the patchwork of East Boulder Canyon, and historic Pinion Camp as we made our trans-wilderness journey.

There was no auto shuttle. The two parties hiked in opposite directions and met near Palomino Mountain for lunch and exchange of car keys. Dan Varner and Doug Hawkins led their hikers and three dogs south from First Water, while Ted Tenny led his hikers north from Peralta.

Colorful rocks of Palomino Mountain.
The patchwork of East Boulder Canyon.
Black Mesa: we’re more than halfway to First Water Trailhead.

The weather was glorious, with the sun shining, the air clean and cool, and a light breeze all the way from Peralta to First Water Trailhead. It was a long but delightful hike: 11½ miles on the Dutchman’s Trail and Peralta Trail, with 2200' of climbing. Everyone did fine.

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Arizona Trailblazers Hiking Club, Phoenix, Arizona
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updated April 4, 2019