What we're about

Just what meetup needs! Another Phoenix based backpacking group. As founder of this group I have been in a number of hiking and backpacking groups since the dawn of the internet. I've seen groups fail, flounder or thrive for various reasons and plan on incorporating the best of what I've seen into this club and steering clear of the worst. Beginner backpackers will always be welcome (I was one) however most trips will be geared to seasoned backpackers of all ages who like challenging trips to remote and less visited destinations. Trips will be in Arizona at first but as this club grows and temperatures rise, so will the mileage to our destinations. This will not solely be a backpacking group, day hikes will also be posted as will special events. Well behaved dogs are welcome. I pledge to all members to lead fairly, use good judgement, not allow any unwelcome harassment and eventually I would like to have others on board to steer and guide this club for years to come. I plan on not having a membership fee but instead a user fee, most likely a modest $1-$2 per participant per night to only fund the meetup fee. Cu on the trail!

Upcoming events (4)

Memorial Day weekend in Arizona's Blue Range (Intermediate trip)

Due to a good amount of snow at the original destination, I came up with a plan B for Memorial day weekend. Lets stay in AZ and explore one of the best kept back country secrets, "The Blue". I've been exploring this area for years and still haven't seen it all! This trip will head to my favorite part of "The Blue", the eastern side along the NM border. This area is special since it has survived the big modern fires that have wiped out most of the best AZ summer backpacking destinations. My plan is to meet on Thursday night and drive partway to the TH and car camp. The following morning we will complete the drive to the State line TH on Pueblo Park Road. The TH is located on the AZ/NM border far from modern civilization. I'm planning this trip as a 4 day/3 night backpack of about 30 miles. We start at 7200' and mostly stay in the 7000'-8000' range so there aren't any real big climbs. This plan can be tweaked into a shorter trip, it depends on interest. Day 1; Backpack in about 7.5 miles into the area of Cow Flat/Franz spring via the Bonanza Bill and Cow Flat trails. Day 2; I'm hoping to backpack about 6.5 miles and camp on the top of Bear Mtn. (8550'). There's an out of commission fire lookout and cabin here. Its a memorable destination but we'd have to carry our water up to camp. This is subject to discussion. Day 3; Backpack about 8.5 miles (mostly down hill) to Franz Cabin via the WS Lake and Franz spring trails. Day 4; Backpack out about 7.5 miles on the Cow Flat and Bonanza Bill trails and head home. High clearance vehicles are needed to drive the last 4-5 miles of Forest road to the TH. Don't be surprised if you see large animals (bear and elk) and no one else besides ourselves. The few people that I've encountered out here are real "Cowboys". It may not sound right but this trip is on the Mogollon Rim. I'm not a professional guide but do have 100's of nights out of experience backpacking. I've created this meetup since I enjoy getting to know other backpackers and reconnecting with ones that I haven't seen in some time. Most places I venture to are remote with help being many hours away, sometimes days. When you attend my trips you must realize that you are responsible for yourself and bad things can happen. However I intend on using good judgement when leading and watching out for all. I may not be with you at all times but in the event something bad happens, I will attempt to get help ASAP and/or help get you out. I expect the same in return. I watch your back and you watch mine.

Intermediate (beginner friendly) backpack, Winter Cabin near Flagstaff

Hey everyone. With the temps rising, its time to head up north to cooler temps! This trip will be to the Sycamore Canyon Wilderness southwest of Flagstaff. The canyon will be hot this time of year so I'm planning to stay above the rim of the canyon exploring the forest. There's a number of springs in the area and after the very wet winter we had, water will not be an issue. There are a number of TH's that are used to access the cabin and springs. I'm planning on using the Dorsey Spring/Hog Hill TH since it sounds like the easiest to access and form a loop backpack. From Flagstaff there's about 20 miles of driving on dirt forest roads to get to our TH. The dirt road driving is listed as passenger car friendly but it would be better to have high clearance vehicles just in case. I'm posting this as beginner friendly since its a low mileage backpack of about 7.5 miles with 5 of them on the first day. There's some elevation to deal with on this trip but its modest at under 1000'. We'll get to the cabin early via the Dorsey Springs trail and Kelsey Winter Cabin trails. I've never been to this area so I plan to explore the nearby trails. For those who don't feel up to it, kick back and relax at camp. We'll pack up Sunday at a leisurely pace and hike out 2.5 miles via the Hog Hill trail. There's an option to add more miles to the hike out, we can discuss this during the trip. I'm not a professional guide but do have hundreds of nights of experience out backpacking. I created this meetup since I enjoy getting to know other backpackers/hikers and reconnecting with ones that I haven't seen in some time out in a tranquil settings. Most places that I venture to are remote with help being many hours, sometimes days away. When you attend my trip you must realize that you are responsible for yourself and bad things can happen. However I intend on using good judgement when leading and watching out for all. I may not be with you at all times but in the event something bad happens, I will attempt to get help ASAP and/or help get you out. I expect the same in return, I watch your back and you watch mine.

Difficult backpack up Kendrick Mountain near Flagstaff

I'm trying to alternate between easier/intermediate and difficult/strenuous trips with this group to offer trips for everyone. I personally like hard trips that make one sore and offer a sense of accomplishment such as this one. Kendrick Peak trail #22 climbs over 2400' in a little over 4.5 miles to a fire lookout (10423'). Not very far below the fire lookout is a cabin located in a meadow. This is where we will camp. What will make this trip hard is we'll have to carry our water up the mountain. There is a spring somewhat near the cabin but the times I've seen it, its been a muddy bog. The plan is to meet in the Flagstaff area at 11AM on Saturday. We'll then drive to the TH via forest roads. The roads are generally in good shape but I'd recommend a HC vehicle. I don't know what kind of vehicles each one of you drive but high clearance owners are always welcomed! Since we'll have to haul water, I decided on a late start time so we can hydrate all morning. To lessen the amount of water that I'll need, I'm bringing food that I don't have to cook. It would be smart for us to consolidate common gear like stoves and fuel to save weight. Once at the cabin, we'll setup and then go visit the fire tower, its staffed. Bring a bribe such as food or a beer, it should get you invited into the lookout. We'll head back to camp afterwards and relax for the rest of the day. Its BYOB if you care to have some drinks. I'm not a professional guide but do have 100's of nights out of experience backpacking. I created this meetup since I enjoy getting to know other backpackers and reconnecting with ones that I haven't seen in sometime. Most places that I venture to are remote with help being many hours or sometimes days away. When you attend one of my trips you must realize that you are responsible for yourself and bad things can happen. However I intend on using good judgement when leading and watching out for all. I may not be with you at all times but in the event something bad happens I will attempt to get help ASAP and/or help get you out. I expect the same in return. You watch my back and I'll watch yours.

RESCHEDULED! 4th of July weekend in the Pecos Wilderness in New Mexico

Due to deep snow in the intended area of travel, I had to push this trip back. Instead of snow, we may have to deal with the start of the monsoon. I put safety first so this itinerary is subject to change if T-Storms are active. If that's the case then we'd stay low and explore the terrain under the tree line. This trip will take place over 5 days since there's a bunch of driving involved but worth it. The plan is to get together on Wednesday sometime andstart the 8-10 hour drive to the Jacks Creek TH located at the end of NM63 north of Cowles. I'm hoping that we'll hit the trail upon arrival the next day and hike in 6.6 miles to Beatty's cabin (9500'). That should take us 4-5 hours to reach, lungs permitting. If not, we'd go in a few miles until we found a good camp spot. Day 2: Make it to Truchas Lakes (11870'). There will be some elevation to hike up. I've found three trails of various lengths to reach the lakes (6.2,7.2 and 10.2 miles). We'll decide which one that morning. Shorter doesn't mean easier, just steeper! Day 3: Will be a short day of 5.3 miles to reach Pecos Baldy Lake (11500'ish). This will be a good day to explore the high country and bag a peak or two. The following day we'll descend back to Jacks Creek TH (6.6 miles) and head home. I'm not a professional guide but do have 100's of nights of experience out backpacking. I've created this gang since I enjoy getting to know fellow backpackers and reconnecting with ones that I haven't seen in some time. Most of the places I venture to are remote with help being many hours, sometimes days away. When you attend my trips you acknowledge that you are responsible for yourself and bad things can happen. However I intend on using good judgement when leading and watching out for all. I may not be with you at all times but in the event something bad happens, I will attempt to get help ASAP and/or help you get out. I expect the same in return. I watch your back, you watch mine.

Photos (158)