With scorching temperatures and blazing heat, yes, summers in Arizona are in deed really hot! Nevertheless, did you too know that in Arizona you can discover some thing to do in the fantastic outdoors, practically any time of the year, even throughout the summer? Far more than any other geologic function, Arizona is an remarkable land filled with several lovely and remote back nation wildernesses and lovely slot canyons and gorges scattered during the state. So even though temperatures may possibly be heating up throughout the day in excess of 100 degrees in the desert, the month of June, prior to summer rain storms arrive, is really an great time to go canyoneering and exploring some of these remote wilderness canyons and gorges, with a lot of of them containing deep pools of awesome, refreshing water!
Situated in the Sierra Ancha Mountain range, northeast of Phoenix, is the Salome Wilderness consisting of about approximately 18,500 acres. Inside the Salome wilderness After along the decrease reaches of Salome Creek, you will discover the “Jug”, a gorgeous slot canyon, with narrow towering walls of pinkish-tinted granite stone, and along its about one mile stretch, a lot of pools of deep, awesome water! So if you would contemplate oneself to be at least a moderate-advanced level hiker and in reasonably great physical shape & situation, and you happen to be up for A lot more of a challenge, an amazing pool hopping, rock sliding, waterfall adventure, and an great intermediate level canyoneering hike I advocate, is the Salome Jug, at Reduce Salome Creek, in the Salome Wilderness, Arizona.
On a gorgeous Saturday morning, in early June, I met up with the TLC Hiking Club, led and organized by Eric Kinneman, at the Fort McDowell Casino, northeast of Phoenix, at 6 am. Following all attending members had arrived, and Right after acquiring a fast overview of our day’s canyoneering adventure, we got into our automobiles and left the casino by around 6:45 am, and headed north on Arizona Highway Route 87, as well recognized as the Beeline Highway.
We drove up the scenic Beeline Highway, one of my preferred highways, till we arrived at state route 188, and produced a proper, heading south, in the direction for Roosevelt Lake. Continuing previous the town of Punkin Center roughly 8 miles, we came to our subsequent turn off, A-Cross Road, produced a left and drove on this extremely rugged, mountainous, and at instances extremely narrow, dirt road exactly where a high clearance automobile or a 4 wheel drive was very suggested. I extremely enjoyed this off roading adventure due to the fact the scenery seeking up and out into the distance, and down beneath, of Roosevelt Lake, Arizona’s most biggest lake, was actually lovely! We continued on A-Cross Road, (aka “60” but this is nonetheless A-Cross Road), for a full of around 10 miles and it was about by 8 am, that we lastly reached the Jug Trailhead and parking region. The Jug Trailhead sits up at the leading of a hill at about three,301 feet in elevation, with panoramic views overlooking Roosevelt Lake and the mountainous Salome Wilderness that had been definitely stunning! We parked our automobiles in the modest parking region, got packed up and Right after a couple of rapid group photo shots, we hit the trail.
Eric Kinneman started our day’s canyoneering adventure by top us from the trailhead, down hill on the Jug Trail #61, a particularly scenic old jeep trail, that descends and switchbacks instead moderately as it will take you additional and additional out into the remote and really rugged, Salome Wilderness. We trekked down hill, about around 800 feet in elevation for two miles till we arrived at Salome Creek exactly where glimpses of the starting of the Jug Canyon initial came into view. As I neared the bottom of the hill, I looked down into the rock canyon beneath and there it was, totally lovely and rugged hunting! What an wonderful adventure this was going to be I believed to myself.
The Jug is a semi-technical canyon, and rated by the American Canyoneering Association, as a 3B-CIII canyon requiring one technical rappel. After you translate this rating, it indicates it is an intermediate canyoneering, moderate-strenuous hike, with water that has no present or light existing or with nonetheless pools to powerful existing based on the time of the year and water levels and flow prices. We did this hike in early summer as soon as the day time air temperatures are high and the present and water level is low, which is considerably safer extremely for anyone who is new to canyoneering or could only have a starting to moderate level of canyoneering knowledge behind them. And, on this early June day, we truly located the water level to be roughly 9-12 inches reduce than typical due to possessing had a extremely dry winter season this previous year. Nevertheless, please note, this is NOT a hike you want to attempt to take on your self unless you have somebody with the encounter and knowledge to guide you, or you have the prior technical canyoneering encounter oneself due to the fact the Jug consists of one technical rappel at a 27 foot water fall cliff. So no matter whether you rappel it, descend it by rope or choose to jump it, please be conscious, this IS incredibly harmful and unsafe, even if you have years of expertise and know what you happen to be carrying out. So assess your skills wisely and use great judgment in deciding no matter whether to do this hike or not, for your own safety.
Soon after reaching Salome Creek at the bottom of the hill, and the starting of the Jug canyon, we instantly veered off to the left, Right after along the creek’s bottom, jumping up and over big rocks and boulders for just a brief ways till we came to our very first set of pools which went from becoming very first knee high to waist high deep as an alternative immediately! On the other hand, the water felt fantastic on this extremely hot summer day and we happily waded from pool to refreshing pool as we particularly very carefully and as well meticulously crossed over the big rocks and boulders in the water, several of which had been covered with green algae and incredibly slippery, as a outcome of the low water level with nonetheless pools.
The adventure continued with A lot more wading, swimming, hopping from one deep pool, then on to the subsequent, through the lovely winding canyon, and I paused for just a short moment to look up at the pinkish tinted, granite walls now towering high and narrowly above me noticing how the sun’s bright rays glimmered down onto the rocks and crevices, ultimately reaching the water beneath, and wow beyond what any image might ever capture, it just definitely lovely and breathtaking!
By this time also, the additional into the canyon we reached, the deeper and deeper the pools became requiring a lot Far more swimming. Even so, as we moved through the canyon from one pool to the subsequent, wading, swimming, with boulder hopping in a couple of locations, we too came upon some tiny water falls Positioned in the canyon’s bottom exactly where the only way to continue was to sit down and slide your way down the wet slippery rocks and falls, till you dropped into the deep pools of water beneath. We completely enjoyed the water slide, and coming down the rock water falls and Following possessing some incredibly good shots of each other, our canyoneering journey through the Jug continued.
It was only a brief ways later, Following nonetheless A lot more wading, swimming, and rock sliding down the modest water falls and rocks that we sooner or later arrived a the giant 27 foot water fall and cliff and lastly caught up with Eric Kinneman and the rest of our hiking group members once more. By this time Eric, also as numerous members from the front end of our pack who had currently effectively jumped off the 27 foot water fall and cliff and had been waiting down beneath, although the rest of us stayed up at the leading. Your possibilities at this point are, you can either rappel it, or descend it by rope, as there are a lot of fixed anchors set up with which to drop a rope from, or it really is as well attainable to jump it. So on this day, guided by Eric Kinneman, a very knowledgeable and top expert hiker, as well with in depth expertise canyoneering, and who he himself had effectively done this canyon a number of instances by jumping it, that is actually what we all decided to do, jump it!
In order for all of us to safely and effectively make this jump, Eric had brought along with him a climbing rope which he set up and anchored from a fixed anchor Positioned at the leading of an upper rock ledge on the correct side. From this upper ledge, he then ran the rope around 50 feet to a second fixed anchor Positioned additional out along the rock ledge, tied it securely there, then dropped the remaining length of rope down to an outer, reduce level ledge. From the waiting region at the leading of the falls, we each climbed up to this upper level ledge, although holding onto the securely anchored rope, as this ledge which was particularly narrow and slippery, then when across the main upper ledge, about around 20 feet or so and even though nevertheless holding onto the rope, we slowly and very carefully descended about approximately 4 feet onto a reduce level rock wall ledge. It was here, from this reduce level ledge roughly 10 feet in length that we had been able to effectively take the 27 foot jump off the cliff and safely come straight down into the incredibly deep pool of water beneath.
I had arrived at the top rated of the falls along with my excellent buddy and fellow hiker, Bob with no intention of jumping that day. Just before beginning this hike, we had decided with each other that we felt Far more comfy descending by rope rather. Nevertheless, as soon as I saw how the rope were securely set up and anchored for us and how it was attainable to make this jump safely as Eric and the other people had currently carried out, too confirming as well that there had been no hidden debris or obstacles Positioned in the water pool beneath that might result in doable harm or injury, it was only at the last minute that I decided to just do it and climbed up to the main, upper ledge, and although nonetheless holding onto rope, traversed across the 20 feet or so, then immediately dropped down the rope to the decrease level ledge. As I’d had some prior knowledge rappelling and technical canyoneering, I felt comfy on the rope but had never cliff jumped just before. Nonetheless, when you got out on this reduce level rock ledge, it was extremely just a straight, obstacle no cost, vertical jump down into the deep pool of water beneath. So with Eric there also as rest of the gang to guide and coach me from beneath, I took a giant deep breath and off the cliff I went, immediately plunging and crashing down into the deep pool of water beneath! Oh my God! What an thrilling, exciting, extreme adrenaline rush that’s totally as opposed to any other! Essentially an remarkable practical experience and wow, what an wonderful adventure!
Afterwards, I retrieved my pack which I had dropped ahead of generating the jump and swam 1-two pools over to an open region exactly where I may possibly get out of the water and warm back up once more in the sun as my body temperature had very dropped by now, with hypothermia becoming one of the dangers and hazards of canyoneering. Meanwhile, Bob had as well come down and Eric continued to coach and guide each and every other remaining member, each one by one, till lastly any person had safely and effectively taken the plunge and produced the 27 foot jump!
When the last members had created it down, we gathered back with each other once more along the side “beach” location in the sun, to eat, rest, and warm back up once more, and after we had been prepared to move on once again, we swam across the last 2 deep pools and reached the end of the 1.0 mile canyon. From the water’s edge, we traversed a tiny path up to the leading of the hill and returned back the similar way we had come earlier, on the Jug Trail # 61, producing it back to the trailhead once more by 1 pm for a full hiking distance of 5.0 miles RT, and a full hiking time of 5.0 hours.
In all, extremely a stunning and gorgeous slot canyon and an wonderful canyoneering hike, perfectly planned, organized and led by Eric Kinneman of the TLC Hiking Club. We owe our thanks and gratitude to Eric due to the fact it was only simply because of his expert coaching, guidance and assistance, that we had been all able to safely jump off a 27 foot water fall cliff, a lot of of us for the really 1st time, and effectively complete this remarkable canyoneering adventure with each other. Essentially a wonderful day and a exciting knowledge we will not soon forget either! So if you are up for an amazing pool hopping, rock sliding, waterfall adventure, and an good intermediate canyoneering hike through a stunning slot canyon, then be confident you examine out the Jug, at Reduce Salome Creek, in the Salome Wilderness, Arizona.