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.