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Superstition Wilderness, AZ

Mar 18 - Mar 25, 2017 -- $1300 ★★★

Just an hour East of Phoenix, in the Tonto National Forest, lies a magical desert called The Superstition Wilderness. We will hike through the heart of this 160,000 acre wilderness traversing many beautiful trails and iconic features such as the Weaver's Needle, LaBarge Box, Miner's Needle, Angel Basin and Supstition Mountain itself. Why not escape your frigid climate and hike a warm, wild and largely unseen section of the country to places that cars cannot reach?

Our journey will begin at the Peralta Trailhead at the South end of the wilderness. After a steep uphill, we'll go to La Barge Spring, La Barge Canyon and head North to the Tortilla Trailhead. We'll head East on the JF Trail towards scenic and wild Angel Basin. We'll head up the Frog Tanks trail to plow saddle before ending our trip at the Reavis Trailhead along the famous Apache Trail.


Weather is always an important concern when backpacking. Historical March weather averages in the mid-70s during the day and 30s-40s at night. However, be prepared for the possibility of day temperatures in the 90s and freezing temperatures at night. We even experienced freak snowstorms in 2006 & 2011 and almost 100 degrees in 2015 so anything can happen. But overall, expect a warm respite from your end-of-winter blues.

Trip Leaders

Steve Silberberg
Donna Farber


$1300 per person double occupancy. Here, double occupancy means that you will share a hotel room with another trip participant. You will also be responsible for transportation to and from Phoenix, AZ (PHX) as well as personal equipment and any restaurant meals.

Covered expenses include 2 hotel nights, 6 days of trail meals, ground transportation, permits, fees and awesome guides.

Important Note

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Saturday, March 18, 2017

Fly or drive into Phoenix Sky Harbor (PHX)

Take free airport shuttle to Comfort Suites Phoenix Airport, 1625 S 52nd St, Tempe, AZ, 85281, 480-446-9500

Equipment shakedown

Trip to REI Tempe, 1405 W Southern Ave, for forgotten or last minute equipment

Distribution of trail mix

"Before" body composition measurements taken

Go out to dinner in town (Dinner not included in trip cost)

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Second set of before body composition measurements taken

Free Hotel Breakfast

Check out of Hotel

Your spare bag(s) for safekeeping at the home of a Fatpacking guide.

Drive to Peralta Trailhead at the South End of the Superstition Wilderness

Begin Hiking on the Bluff Spring Trail #235, elevation 2400'

Hike 2.1 uphill miles on the Bluff Spring Trail #235 to the Terrapin Trail #102, elevation 3200', a very difficult start to this trip.

Continue hiking 1.0 miles on the Bluff Spring Trail #235 to Dutchmans Trail #104, elevation 3050'

Hike 2.3 miles on the Dutchmans Trail #104 to the Red Tanks Trail #107, elevation 2650'

Dispersed camp near LaBarge Spring (water generally reliable) practicing Leave No Trace principles, elevation 2650'

Miles today: 5.4 miles. Total to date: 5.4 miles

Possible Bailout: Peralta Trailhead

Monday, March 20, 2017

Hike 1.0 miles on the Dutchmans Trail #104 through the Lower LaBarge Box to Charlebois Spring, elevation 2600'.

Hike about 4.0 miles on Peter's Trail #105 up and over Peter's Mesa to to Kane Spring, elevation 3700'.

Water at Kane Spring is seasonal.

Dispersed camp near Kane Spring practicing Leave No Trace principles, elevation 3700'

Miles today: 5.0 miles. Total to date: 10.4 miles

Possible Bailout: Tortilla Trailhead

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

No water tonight, so fill packs with 2 gallons of water each in anticipation of dry camping tonight

Hike about 2.5 miles on Peter's Trail #105 to a dirt road, elevation 3100'

Road walk about 0.2 miles on the dirt road to the Tortilla Trailhead, elevation 3100'

Hike 0.8 uphill miles on the JF Trail #106 to the Hoolie Bacon Trail intersection, elevation 3400'

Continue hiking about 2.5 uphill miles on the JF Trail #106 to a high flat grassy area somewhere near Clover Spring (most likely dry), elevation 4000'

Dispersed camp in grassy highland near the JF Trail practicing Leave No Trace principles (note: no water here), elevation 4000'

Miles Today: 6.0. Total to Date: 16.4

Possible Bailout: Tortilla Trailhead

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Hike about 2.7 uphill miles on the JF Trail #106 to Tortilla Pass, the highest elevation on this trip, elevation 4900'

Hike 1.6 downhill miles on the Rogers Canyon Trail #110 to Angel Basin, elevation 3650'

Water is generally reliable here.

Set up a dispersed camp and spend the afternoon exploring the nearby Rogers Canyon Cliff Dwellings.

Miles Today: 4.3. Total to Date: 20.7

Possible Bailout: Rogers Trough Trailhead

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Hike 5.5 miles on the Frog Tanks Trail #112 to Plow Saddle Springs, elevation 4400'

Plow Saddle Springs is seasonal but generally reliable this time of year

Cook dinner here and fill all vessels with water. There is no more water the rest of the trip.

Hike 0.4 uphill miles on FST Trail #287 to Plow Saddle, elevation 4800'

Dispersed camp on Plow Saddle practicing Leave No Trace principles, elevation 4800'

Miles today: 5.9 miles. Total to date: 26.6 miles

Bailout: Reavis Trailhead

Friday, March 24, 2017

Hike 6.4 miles on the Reavis Ranch Trail #109 to Reavis Trailhead, elevation 3600'

End of Hike

Miles Today: 6.4. Total to Date: 33.0

Shuttle back to Comfort Suites Phoenix Airport, 1625 S 52nd St, Tempe, AZ, 85281, 480-446-9500

"After" body composition measurements taken

Dinner and Awards Ceremony (cost of dinner not included in trip cost)

This is the official end of the trip. You are welcome to spend the night at the hotel, however if you drove and would like to get on the road or if you flew and would like to schedule a late flight (or a red-eye if this is a West Coast trip) you can definitely do so.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Free breakfast in Hotel

Take Free Airport Shuttle

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