Nov 2, 2013 · 9:00 AM
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This hike is rated: INTERMEDIATE BACKPACK
DISTANCE: 6.8 miles each way
ELEVATION GAIN: ~900 ft (TH elevation ~4700 ft
DURATION: 2 days!
TRAIL STYLE: Out and back
DOGS: Not recommended, but must be leashed.
The Hike: This extremely pleasant hike through the Eastern Superstitions begins at the Rogers Trough trailhead and takes the southern section of the Reavis Ranch Trail (109) northbound to the old abandoned Reavis Ranch homestead.
From Rogers Trough trailhead we’ll take the Reavis Ranch trail north into Rogers Canyon. This will be downhill as we pass the West Pinto Trail intersection at about a quarter mile and then the Rogers Canyon Trail at about 1.5 miles.
At the Rogers Canyon Trail intersection we will bear right or northwest and begin the long uphill climb to Reavis Saddle. The climb, although lengthy, is not too difficult and the views from the upper portions are spectacular. Initially it stays in the creek bed till just beyond the 2 mile point where it climbs out to the north and begins a series of numerous switchbacks to the top of the saddle at ~3 miles. Just before the switchbacks, we can stop at Reavis’s gravesite (he was apparently buried where he died – on the trail) to pay our respects and have some refreshment before the climb to the saddle. This is the part of the hike where you will be glad you didn’t pack too much stuff in your pack!
The reward at the top is a refreshing terrain of Junipers and Pinon Pine. This is a great place to stop for a quick breather. From here there begins a gentle and consistent descent down to the floor of Reavis Canyon all the way to the ranch. This is where the beauty truly begins as you are quickly engulfed in the shady forest of Ponderosa pines and open grassy meadows.
At about 5.5 miles we’ll cross the flowing creek (clear and filterable) and at 6 miles arrive at the Fire Line trail intersection. From here we quickly enter the main meadow on which the ranch is located. There is an abundance of camping spots in this popular area, some of which are likely to be already occupied! This is where we plan on camping for the night. The ruins of the old farmhouse consist of little more than the foundation, but a little poking around will yield some very interesting antique farming implements and cattle enclosures. If you want to see the entire ranch property you must proceed north to the far end of the orchard and the intersection with Reavis Gap trail at 6.8 miles.
Car Pool Location: Home Depot Parking Lot (Power Rd & US-60) - south-east corner on Superstition Springs Blvd at 8:00am sharp. If you miss us there, meet us at the Trailhead before 9:00 am
Directions to Rogers Trough Trailhead: From Phoenix, take U.S. 60 east about 40 miles to Florence Junction. Two miles past the junction, between mile markers 214 and 215, turn north onto Queen Valley Road. Go 1.7 miles to Hewitt Station Road (Forest Road 357). Turn right and go 3 miles to FR 172, then north 9.2 miles to the sign where the road splits to the Rogers Trough and Woodbury trailheads. Take FR 172A almost 4 miles to the Rogers Trough Trailhead. A high-clearance vehicle is required, four-wheel drive is recommended.
What to bring:
- 3+ liters of water for the trail. Water available at Reavis Ranch (but must be treated/filtered)
- Sturdy shoes or boots
- Rain gear (rain shell or poncho)
- Cold weather clothes - ~20 degrees cooler than Phoenix
- Walkie-Talkie / FRS Radio
- GPS, maps, compass, first aid, etc.
- Backpack/camping gear. We can sort out 'group equipment' such as water filters, stoves, kitchen gear, etc. closer to the date.
Note: This hike is within the boundaries of the Superstition Wilderness, which limits group sizes to maximum 15 people to help protect the delicate ecosystem!