Hiking Trip #11
Goal: Scheelite Canyon Trail then on to Ramsey Peak (8,725 FT)
Trail: Scheelite Canyon Trail
Date: June 24, 2014
Partner: Scott Weiss
Distance: 7.2 Miles
Start Elevation: 5,521 FT
End Elevation 8,350 FT
Elevation Change: 2,829 FT
Accumulated Gain: 3,173 (Source: Hike AZ)
Do It Again: Yes, because we did not make it to Ramsey Peak due to time constraints! That is unless we find a better way!
Comments: The “Hike AZ” Guide lists best months the hike this trail; April, May, Sept and Oct…reason why; it is hotter than hell at the end of June and this is June!
We can also answer that age old question “Do Bears S#%T in the Woods”? Yes, and we have proof….see picture!
Currently this is our second favorite trail, Hamburg being our favorite. Scheelite Trail is very beautiful BUT very strenuous, did I mention beautiful!! The trail is not very well marked (understatement) and where this spring’s fire burned, the trail is all but none existent. Guess what; we had to go “cross country”, yes again, BUT with WAY better results than when we did our first Lutz Canyon hike (See Lutz #1). We ended up on the “Crest Trail”. Scheelite dead ends into “Crest Trail” so we just followed “Crest” until we found where “Scheelite” and “Crest” meet. Oh we had to do this as we lost the trail due to the fire. The two trails meet at gate #2 on Ft. Huachuca. The clearing at gate #2 is one of the nicest places we have seen. Fantastic views to the west and south, plenty of pine trees and plenty of pine needles to relax under. Ramsey peak is SO close but too far to make today, so back down we go to do this again on another day.
An item to note: we came across some stones with what looked like rust spots all over them, very neat looking. At that point 2 lady hikers were heading back down the trail (they gave up as they kept loosing the trail….us being, guys would NEVER give into that! NOT when you can go “CROSS COUNTRY”!) anyway we asked (yes we can ask questions) and they said it was the fire retardant dropped while the “Hot Shots” were putting out the spring fire.
Hiking Trip #10
Trail: Finish Comfort Springs Trail and do Ramsey Vista Camp Ground to Old Saw Mill Trail, Trail
Date: June 18, 2014
Partner: None, Scott was with his family fishing in the White Mountains, Dana at work.
Distance: Finish Comfort Trail about 5 miles round trip, Ramsey Vista about 1 mile round trip
Start Elevation: 7,381
End Elevation 7,381 Start finish same point
Elevation Change: 350 ft
Accumulated Gain: 350 ft Does not sound like much but it IS
Do It Again: Now that I have finished these trails, probably not
Comments: Weather: The weather was fantastic. There where large white fluffy clouds with bright blue sky behind, very pretty! Most of sun was blocked by clouds and there was a nice breeze/wind, with very low humidity…GREAT day for a hike!
Comfort Springs Trail: I started out at the Ramsey Vista campground which is the end of the trail, walking back to where Scott and I thought the spring was. After 20 minutes I past a concrete water box with a pipe coming out of the ground, if there was any water it would fill the box so animals/people could drink out of it. But alas no water (I would latter find out that this IS the spring the trail was named after, VERY underwhelming, see picture of box). I continued on to where we thought the spring would be. I went down what looked like a side trail about 8 feet and the “trail” dropped off over an 8-10 foot cliff…..oh well no trail here. Since we had already done this part of the trail I headed back to the car. As it turns out when Scott and I were hiking we were only 250-300 yards from what is actually the spring.
Ramsey Vista Camp Ground to Old Saw Mill Trail: After getting back to the car I decided to do the part of Old Saw Mill trail we had not done. This trail is just another way to access Carr Peak Trail. Trail is very rocky. A decent, short hike with nothing much to note.
Hiking Trip #9
Trail: Hamburg Trail to Comfort Springs and almost to the Ramsey Vista Campground
Date: June 9, 2014
Partner: Scott Weiss
Distance: 9.6 Miles round trip
Start Elevation: 5,550 FT
End Elevation 5,550 Ft (started and stopped at Ramsey Preserve)
Elevation Change: O Ft (started and stopped at Ramsey Preserve)
Accumulated Gain: 1,763 FT (Highest Peak we hiked over was 7,313 Ft)
Do It Again: Since this is in the same area as Hamburg and we actually use most of Hamburg this whole hike is the prettiest we have hiked. The trail once you leave Hamburg is actually prettier than Hamburg …if that is possible??!! So answer yes, after we do other trails.
Comments: Today was sunny and HOT projected to be 98, so we opted to do Hamburg to Comfort Springs trail to Ramsey Vista Campground as it is mostly follows the river bed (actually a big (HUGE) wash that directs the runoff from the mountain) and is mostly in the forest/woods. As mentioned above this is just BEAUTIFUL, it looks and feels like Colorado! We did not see any special wildlife but did hear a rare Elegant Trogon and passed a hiker “communicating” with these birds (too much heat??) We did not make it all the way to Ramsey Vista Campground as we had a late start. The Ramsey Preserve is a fee area that we have to pass through and they opened up late due to a computer problem, so we simply ran out of time. We were only about .2s of a mile away (Scotts new favorite term)!
Hiking Trip #8
Lutz Mine Trail, 2nd Try We Made It!
Trail: Lutz Mine Trail
Date: June 4, 2014
Partner: Scott Weis
Distance: Approximately 7 plus miles
Start Elevation: 5,800 Ft
End Elevation 5,800 Ft (this was our starting point)
Elevation Change: 8474 Ft
Accumulated Gain: 3,074 Ft That is a lot!
Do It Again: Probably not as there are so many other trails to do, but is a good hike, as long as you don’t miss the trail and go on a cooler day!
Comments: Do not hike on the hottest day of the year (so far) by the time we finished is was 95 degrees, no clouds, low humidity equates to VERY HOT!!!
Unlike our last attempt we stayed on the actual trail and made it to both the small mine ( about 15 feet into the mountain) and the much larger mine (have no idea far it goes back as all we had was Scotts iPhone flash light). Unfortunately the larger mine had a large amount of debris for illegal aliens. It was a cloudless day and the whole hike was on the Southeastern side on the mountain, hence in the sun hence we cooked! Since the fire 3 years ago there is no shade! We tried to make it up to Crest Trail (the top of the ridge) but due to heat stopped short by about a quarter of a mile! At the smaller mine there were 2 large pieces of equipment that we think were used to power jackhammers….pretty cool. The debris from the mines in the area are really neat. Folks back in the day were some hardy souls! We hiked here and were tried, they had to work up here AND bring everything they used, ate and drank up to the mines!