.As much as ih8mud I need off-road
The run is going to start at FR616 34°29'48.4"N 111°22'07.5"W then meet up with FR142 at 34°30'35.7"N 111°22'47.6"W and head West. We will break off onto FR142B at 34°31'31.1"N 111°28'13.2"W and head north to the trailhead. It looks like you hiked from the end of the powerline road 34°34'07.3"N 111°29'45.5"W from your description. I plan to hike from the Calloway Trailhead at 34°31'50.5"N 111°29'09.4"W. The descent is a little less steep here.I just did this Saturday/Sunday. It is muddy but fine with all terrain tires. I don't know if I am going to make it this weekend so here on some notes. This was my 6th time doing this trail and hike. I get there from 260, 34°30'58.0"N 111°31'54.9"W. There is a gate there. I take that north to the powerline road and go east. That is going to take you back into the woods down hill to a Tank. Vere left after the tank. You need to go through one more gate 34°32'50.5"N 111°30'47.5"W and that will eventually run you into 142, 34°33'15.9"N 111°30'25.9"W which then goes north to the trail head and ends at the cliff. Leaving I go straight/south instead of right toward where I came in and back to 142. Then hang a right at the T 34°31'50.5"N 111°29'09.4"W. That will take you back to 260. Yesterday I went left because there a few spots of small boulders and some mud puddles for fun. Once I hit the graded forest road I turned around and went back going straight at the T to 260. This route going in is stock friendly. 31s and running boards will take a lot more work to pick your line but not impossible. I have 33s, 2" lift and sliders and it was a no problem. Stock bumpers might drag in a spot or two but could probably be avoided. Expect a little bit of pinstripping from Junipers but not heneous. There is one spot on the way out if you take a right at the T that a stock truck will need some pretty solid spotting but I think it could be done. There is no way around it other than turning back and going out the forest road. Hanging a left a the T has bypasses around the boulders and it is graded forest road after that taking FR 142 to HWY 87 or FR 142 to FR 149 to HWY 260.
It is amazing. But it is not easy. With that being said I am 40 in moderate shape and took my 8 year old daughter for the first time and we did it very slowly but we made it. The top of the trail head is about 6000'. It is about 7-800' down. The rain actually made it a little easier because the loose dirt is now more solid. But it could get pretty slick with more rain though I don't think it would still be that bad. It is switch backs that can be walked down on 2 feet most of the way but a few times were on all 4s for the slickness. The water is really flowing right now. It is higher than I have ever seen it and it is really brown right now which it is usually crystal clear. But not unsafe when we did it. We started down the trail at 11am. I wouldn't start any later than that. It is a slot canyon and the sun if it is out only shines from about 1100 to 1300 in some places. Since the water is really cold the sun is really nice to have. I also wouldn't want to be in the canyon much past 3pm for monsoons. It would be deadly to be down there in a flash flood so it is imperative you keep a close eye on the weather and don't go if in doubt. A light sprinkle is ok but a down pour up stream is no good. If you go to the best part it is about 1.5 miles down the creek. It is rock scrambling, wading, and about seven 100meter+ swims. My daughter wore a life jacket and my dry bag back pack was enough floatation for me. Once you get what I was telling my daughter was the surprise at the end, there is a great open place to eat lunch. You'll know when you get there. I don't want to ruin it if haven't already seen pictures. From there you can reverse route or you can hike out from there. There hike out from there is though and about 1200' in a 1/4 mile. Then at the top about a 2 mile hike back to the car. We camped at the trailhead and it is a great spot on the edge of the canyon. This could be done as a day trip if needed.
I hope I can make it but if not PM me for my number if I can help.
Cut and paste not going work on my phone. I'm a low tech kind of guy. Have a vehicle with navigation for five years and have yet to use it. Do have a hand held but it's fifteen years old and no maps on it. Just mark my location when I leave my vehicle so I do not have to pay attention to where I'm hiking and know the shortest way back. Any place it is legal to drive is on the 2018 travel map. Have the map and just a simple about how far off 87 on 616 is all I need.Just paste this into Google maps: 34°29'48.4"N 111°22'07.5"W
I drove thru there again today. Second time this week. Poured coming out of Camp Verde. Could tell it had rained in the area as well.
I do love breakfast.I drove thru there again today. Second time this week. Poured coming out of Camp Verde. Could tell it had rained in the area as well.
For those low tech like myself 616 is about 6/10 of a mile past mile post 284 coming from the valley. 616 is right at the bottom of a steep hill and eft turn is at least 135 degrees. FS road 142 is right at mile post 285 and has a parking area since when it snows people slide down the road past the gate. Possibly a better place to stage. That map is incorrect. There is no 209. The loop where 142 headed up and around is long gone. I show 142 going back into that area as well on legal roads.
Current gas price for unleaded at the new Happy Jack stop and get is $329. Long Valley at Clints Well has sold and new is renaming it. Long Valley cafe is now Tall Pines cafe. Denise who ran the Long Valley cafe is now run the restaurant at the Happy Jack lodge. Considering stopping at one or the other Saturday evening. Depending when the plan met is Saturday may stop for breakfast first. Only five miles further up SR-87.