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Garden Valley/ Hackberry Loop Day Hike
November 18, 2023
by Michael Humphrey
     GPS Map    
by Kevin
group A
Trailblazers doing the Garden Valley / Hackberry loop in the Superstitions. [photo by Michael]
Michael, Debbie, Kevin, Terri .

This was a nice day to get pictures of the clouds on the Superstitions. In Arizona this does not happen often. It had rained the night before so no dust on the road, but the chance of rain for the day was high. Just after we started we got maybe 30 seconds of rain, I did not even put on my rain gear.

The clouds are rolling in. [photo by Debbie]
Starting down the trail. [photo by Kevin]

We then continued upwards on the Second Water trail. No rain until we are up on the plateau. We get to see the Garden Valley arch when we first get into Garden Valley. This is the flat part and with no rain so far it is easy walking to the old ruins. It just looks like a dirt mound now, but there is plenty of pottery shards around.

Going up Second Water to Garden Valley. [photo by Debbie]
Garden Valley arch from Hackberry trail. [photo by Michael]

As we are about to leave the ruins, I can see rolling down the mountain the storm front. It is time to put the rain gear on. This part of the Hackberry trail until it starts down is bad when wet. The good news is this is just a light rain, but it is enough to get the top layer of the trail turned into mud.

The storm clounds rolling in. [photo by Debbie]
Foot prints in the mud. [photo by Kevin]
The trail is getting a little wet. [photo by Debbie]
A little bit of mud got on our shoes. [photo by Kevin]

Finally, we get out of the rain as we head down. There is a trail over to the arch here, but it crosses slick rock. The slick rock would be bad to cross when wet, so we just go down. The rain stops as we start down, so the rain gear can be removed. This is the last rain while we are on the mountain. About half way down there is the unsigned juction with the old military trail, we take a short stop here. The break in the fence for the gate is still here, but the gate is gone. We continue on Hackberry to the spring. This spring has water all year around, even in droughts.
We then contine up though the slot canyon First Water has cut until we get to the old correls. We then exit using the old road back to the horse parking lot. We then follow the horse trail back to my truck. This was a fun day in the Superstitions.

Gate for the old military trail. [photo by Debbie]
Debbie by the spring. [photo by Kevin]
Trailblazers get though the slot. [photo by Michael]
The sun comes out at the end of the trail. [photo by Debbie]
Note: these links are temporary. Look at the pictures while you can.

→   More pictures, by Debbie
→   More pictures, by Kevin
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Arizona Trailblazers Hiking Club, Phoenix, Arizona updated January 6, 2024
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