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  1. #1
    dejoha's Avatar
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    2nd Annual Arizona Fossil Springs Hang

    Okay, I just want to start the dialogue for the second annual Arizona Fossil Springs Hang. Last year, we did the hang in min-January. There was a little snow on the north side of the trail near the parking lot, but otherwise the trails were clear. Easy, paved roads all the way to the trailhead.

    The gushing springs issue water at an enormous rate and at around 70F year round. I was tempted to take a Polar Dip, and I think I will this next time.

    I'd like to open the discussion for what dates work best. Is January a good time, or do we want to push it to February?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Roadtorque's Avatar
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    Late Jan or early Feb would be a good time period. Good chance to test out some cold weather gear! Count me in.

  3. #3
    SamD's Avatar
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    Altitude and distance of walk?
    U.S. Army Paratrooper, Combat Engineer, DAV (Life Member), American Legion (Life Member)
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  4. #4
    dejoha's Avatar
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    It is a four (4) mile hike down to the springs, if you start at the Fossil Creek Trail at the top, dropping about 2,000 feet. Last year, I took my two oldest kids (8 and 6) and they did great. Overall, the hike is moderate. Very well used. Very popular place in the summer time.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Roadtorque's Avatar
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    Like dejoha said, the hike is moderate. The way down is very easy and you'll be at the bottom before you know it. The way out is all up hill, especially the first mile or two before it starts to level out a little. The way out can be a little tough but just take it slow and steady. In the summer time hundreds of young scouts with very overweight leaders hike this trail. If they can do it then anyone can. Fossil springs is a unique place to visit. Although it's not as beautiful in the winter it is far less busy. Last year there was only one other group of of 3 guys down there (besides us). Compare that to this summer when there were over a hundred others down there. The nice thing about a winter camp to fossil springs is the FS has removed all the trash people left down there. Check out the official trail description with pics and GPS routes. http://hikearizona.com/decoder.php?ZTN=183

  6. #6
    dejoha's Avatar
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    Didn't some folks hike up from the bottom of the trail? I think there might be two routes. I did the top-down trail from Strawberry. I read that the FS has banned all campfires, but we can camp upstream of the dam. I think that location is less impacted, maybe because there are fewer swimming holes. I wonder if candle lanterns are outlawed?

  7. #7
    Senior Member Roadtorque's Avatar
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    Yes there are two ways. One is steeper but shorter, the other is longer but flatter. The official trail is the steeper, shorter one that you took last year. I heard the other trail is not in very good shape anymore.

    Yes there are new (as of this year) restrictions placed on camping and fires here is a link to the FS site. If you click on the top it will link you to the new rules.http://www.fs.fed.us/r3/coconino/rec...pgs-wild.shtml

    We can camp without restrictions (above the dam) but no fires are allowed within 1/4 sm of the spring/river. That might be a small annoyance for a winter hang.

  8. #8
    dejoha's Avatar
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    Yes, my kids sure loved the campfire we had. I can live without one, but is the location worth it, in the winter? I liked the spot because the traffic was low and it still had beautiful scenery.

    I guess I can hijack my own thread and suggest Oak Creek. We can do campfires up that canyon, but I think we have to go in at least 6 miles. The terrain is flat and the hike is very easy. Getting in is also super easy and probably a shorter commute for most since it is not far of I-17.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Roadtorque's Avatar
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    I would be up for oak creek. My only concern would be the water temps during the winter. If it's doable I'm all for it. I think it would be a beautiful canyon if there is a light dusting of snow! Either place is good for me.

  10. #10
    dejoha's Avatar
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    Maybe it would be just us, roadtorque

    Heck, let's just set a time and do it. I'm kind of tired of motivating a group hang; I just want to get out and hike! Let's do Oak Creek, have a campfire, sing songs, play games, and take in the season. I don't think the water will be a problem -- there are creek crossings but the level will/should be low and getting wet shouldn't be a problem.

    I have a few guys here in town who I could drag with me, perhaps, but either way, let's just do it.

    Still good for February? How about Feb 4 weekend?

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