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Sunflower Foothills Day Hike
Mazatzal Mountains
March 16, 2019
by Ted Tenny
  GPS Map
  GPS Map
group
We started at Cross F Trailhead.
Ron, Joe, Mimi, Rebecca, Barb, Barbara [Ted is behind the camera].

Seven of the finest Trailblazers started out from Cross F Trailhead on a one-way hike to High Water Access. We wouldn’t attempt to cross Sycamore Creek today, because we could see the water was high and swift.

We started west on the Little Saddle Trail, which goes through scenic ranch land on its way up to the Arizona Trail.

sign
They’ve put up signs to mark the trail. [photo by Barbara]
water
The trail goes through ranch country.
hikers
Climbing up to the Arizona Trail. [photo by Barbara]
rock
Rock formations along the Little Saddle Trail.
view
But this isn’t the way.
face
Stone Face is watching you.

When we got to the Arizona Trail we turned left to go south. Passage 22 of the AZT was muddy today in many places. There were a few flowers out, but mostly just mud and many water crossings. Along the way we enjoyed fine views of the mountains on all sides, especially Mt. Ord and Diamond Mountain.

water
Barbara is next to cross the water.
water
Mimi shows us how it’s done.
Ord
There’s still some snow on Mt. Ord.
Diamond
Diamond Mountain is west of the Arizona Trail.
water
Water in the desert!  Plenty of it.
pond
Why did they build a fence across the pond?  To keep the frogs on one side?
Ted
Hoofing it on the Arizona Trail. [photo by Joe]

Joe remarked that there were signs and cairns where the trail is easy to follow, but not where we really need them. Sure enough we lost the trail in a place where it’s hard to find. Both Rebecca and Joe went looking for a trail, one on each side. Rebecca found a road. Later we saw a sign confirming that it was the Arizona Trail.

hikers
This part of the trail is well defined. [photo by Barbara
view
Where’s the trail?
Rebecca
Rebecca finds the way.
Joe
Better close that gate!

The day stayed cool and nice for us. We met only one other hiker, a fellow with his dog.

canyon
The Arizona Trail crosses a rocky canyon.
Barbara
Barbara has less than a mile to go. [photo by Joe]
hill
A pleasant hill with Boulder Mountain in the background.
yellow
Desert Evening Primrose
pink
Desert Wishbone-bush
green
Everything is so green!
garden
Natural desert graden.
moss
This stone isn’t rolling. It gathers moss. [photo by Joe]
lichen lichen
Each color of lichen is a different species.

My thanks to Ron, Barb, Mimi, Rebecca, Barbara, and Joe for going with me! You all made the hike special.

Ted   


This hike is described in Footloose from Phoenix, by Ted Tenny, pages 85-91.

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updated March 17, 2019