This is a very popular hike to a cave in the side of Pass Mountain and a great view of the entire valley.
The trail is 1.6 miles up about 800 ft. (switchbacks that get steeper as you get closer to the cave) and then 1.6 miles back. There is only one area that is considered even mildly difficult, but as always we take it slow and the great view of the valley will be worth it.
Our hikes are generally at a pace conducive to social banter of interest to heathens, and allowing for time for photography of the local geology and wildlife. Expect this hike to last 3 hours.
Here are links to photos from our previous trips:
At this link is a “virtual” trip to the “cave” (click on 2nd panel below index):
… We won’t take the additional hike to the top (too difficult for our group?)
At this link is a short video of someone’s trip:
For the asking, I have handouts discussing, geology of the area, and plant and animals we’ll likely encounter. Also I carry reference books for after the hike.
One of the special geological features we will see is the Geronimo Formation:
Distance: 3.2 miles
Time: 3 hrs.
Difficulty: moderate . . steep in few places but short
Trail: gravel and rock
Elevation: [masked] ft.
change: 830 ft..
Parking: lot with facilities
Tailhead GPS: 33° 28’ 26.23” N, 111° 36’ 26.00” W
Entry fees: $6/car
Always carry and drink plenty of water!
Sunscreen is advised.
Supportive footwear is also advisable.
SAFETY FIRST… we have no medical provisions
How to find us: Meet at the trailhead parking lot (See directions below)… If lost or late, my cell is[masked]-5945.
To get there:
Take US 60 east. Exit Ellsworth Rd. and go north to the Usery Mountain Regional Park entrance. Then drive ahead to the wind cave trail head.
Take the 202 east to exit 23a and south on power rd to left on McDowell and then left on Ellsworth and right into Usery Park on E Usery Park Rd.
See this link for help on locating the park:
IMPORTANT MESSAGE FOR CARPOOLERS:
Carpooling can save gas but also enhance the social experience. If you’d like to carpool, you must ontact others for arrangements. You could email members or post on this announcement page comments.
Although you may know of better choices, and I want to hear of them, I can suggest these carpool locations around the valley:
Those traveling from north or northwest of Phoenix could meet at the park-n-ride or Fry’s just west of I-17 on the south side of Bell Rd. From there you can take the 17 to the 10 to the 202. Allow about an hour to get to the trail head.
Those traveling from the Tempe/Mesa area could meet at the parking lot just north of the 60 on Alma School Rd. . . enter Fiesta Mall toward the west from Alma School Rd. and park straight ahead at the perimeter of the parking lot across from Best Buy. From there you can follow the 60 to the 101 north to the 202 and east to the park and get there in a little over 30 minutes.
Following the hike we will reconvene at Old Chicago near Power Road and the 60. They have outside patio seating allowing dogs. To get there from the 60 take Power Rd. south a few hundred feet to Superstition Springs Blvd. and turn left (east) a few hundred feet to 6821 E. Superstition Springs Blvd… restaurant is obvious on right (south side).
REHYDRATION STATION OPTION:The Monastery restaurant/bar/playground/picnic area. http://www.realfunbar.com/
Reviews on the internet say it is a great place with great food.
“You buy the meat there and cook it up yourself on the grill. You also can purchase alcohol while you wait. After getting grub, play horseshoes, darts or sand volleyball, or just mingle”
“It is very fun to go there with family and friends. It is also fun to play ping pong, pool, foosball and listen to the live bands. It is a great time any time to go at all times of the year.”
“It’s a great place to hang out and have a beer outside in this large patio area. The best part is that I can bring my dogs. As long as you have them leashed the place is the most dog friendly place I have ever been to in the East Valley.”
TO GET THERE:
from the east on 60 go North on 202 and then take McKellips exit and go About 3 miles west
from greenfield exit on 202 go south 2 miles to McKellips and turn east (left) ½ mile
from greenfield exit on 60 go north 4 ½ miles to McKellips and turn east (right) ½ mile
ADDRESS: 4810 East McKellips Road, Mesa, AZ