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Coon Bluff Loop (Lower Salt River, Bush Highway, Tonto National Forest)

Description: The trail begins near the far Southwest corner of the parking area.  Almost immediately you will begin a steep, but short, climb up to the ridge.  The trail often gets washed out here and can be loose gravel but not very difficult to walk for this short distance if you walk carefully. Continue to the top of the rocky bluff which provides a pleasant view of the Lower Salt River looking back toward the recreation area, a nice view of the Fountain Hills Fountain (hourly , on the hour) looking to the West, or a nice view of the Superstitions facing to the East. I have read postings with descriptions of Wild Stallion sightings in this area, but I have yet to be blessed to see them myself. This is a good birding area too, so it might be a good idea to bring some binoculars. Continue on a south eastern direction (off trail) heading further uphill to the ridge crest where you pick up and old Jeep trail. From here the trail is very easy and continues along the crest of the ridge. Continue heading east to return to the parking area. It’s possible to squeeze in a Salt River splash at the end of the hike, so bring (wear) a bathing suit and towel if that’s your thing.

Difficulty: Very Easy

Total Distance: Less than 2 miles

Start Elevation: 1402 ft.

Elevation Gain: 200 ft.

Water to Bring: 1-2 liters

Drive Time: 45 minutes

Alternate Meeting Time/Place: 8:30 AM, Power Road Commuter Parking Lot, Power Road & Rte 202 (Red Mountain Loop). Look for group members near the Bus pick-up area. This pick-up site is optional, (I might be picking up a pair of guests who live near this lot)

Estimated Return Time: 1:00 PM

Special Instructions: I usually park just outside of the Coon Bluff Recreational area to avoid paying the Tonto Pass fee of $6.00. There is room for several cars there. Depending on how many hikers and drivers attend, it would be wise to have a Tonto Pass with you if you are driving (incase all the outside parking spots are taken). 

Weather


Not sure what to bring? Checklists are available here.

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  • Jeff

    This was a great relaxing Sunday hike. The small bluff delivered some grand views of the Salt River including Four Peaks as a background. Thanks for organizing it Dave.

    March 16, 2014

    • A former member
      A former member

      Jeff

      March 18, 2014

    • A former member
      A former member

      Jeff. Thanks for joining me a Nova on this hike. I agree it was relaxing with great views and the weather was perfect. I'm glad we saw one of the Wild Stallions at the end of the hike. I'll explore for so longer distance adventures in this area and get back to you.

      March 18, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Pat, there's room for you + guest if you still want to join us. We keep changing the meeting place since we are a small group. If you're coming meet us at 8:30 at the Power/202 (Red Mtn Freeway) Park-and-Ride.

    March 16, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    It looked like nobody was coming!!!!! (So I too quickly made changes). We can meet at Pyle, I'll be there to make sure everyone gets a ride and drivers know where they are going. Sorry to confuse. I'll see you there.

    March 15, 2014

  • Teresa E.

    So is anyone meeting at Pyle?

    March 15, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    I have invited 4 non-members to attend so the group size for this hike is 6 plus my dog Nova. We will meet at the Power Road Park & Ride ( Power Rd and the Red Mountain Freeway Rte 202) at 8:30 AM instead of the Pyle Rec Ctr and WSHC members should plan to meet us there instead of the Pyle Rec Ctr.

    March 15, 2014

  • Mark G.

    Hi David, thanks for hosting a hike so soon after joining! It came up quickly and not sure whether I will make it Sunday but still possible. It sounds nice, relaxing and scenic as you described at the planning meeting. Mark

    March 12, 2014

    • A former member
      A former member

      I realize the short notice and the short distance. I choose this hike to be different. If it doesn't work out ill lead another, more interesting event later. Thanks for your comments!

      March 13, 2014

5 went

  • Jeff
    Organizer
  • gary b.
    Member
  • A former member
    +2 guests

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