Yesterday (Wednesday, Nov 28) was my first Arizona hike of this season. Great to be back “on the trail”! We hiked the White Canyon south of Superior, a route we first hiked last year. Then I called it the Walnut Canyon hike, but I’ve since learned the real name.
This is a pretty easy hike (nice, when you don’t have your “trail legs” in condition yet). Because we don’t all drive high-clearance Jeeps, we parked about 3/4-miles short of the trailhead, and walked in on the road through an open valley environment. This gives some nice views of eye-popping layer-cake mesas which frame the valley.
At the trailhead you enter the canyon via the streambed, and the hike sticks close to the canyon bottom for as far as you want to venture “up canyon”.
While it would be difficult to get lost (just head back “down canyon”) the trail is somewhat fragmented and often overgrown by disuse, so pause often to take your bearings. This is not a bad thing, because the canyon is a continuous showplace of sculptured and tumbled rock.
This is “young” country, craggy and sharp-edged. Nature isn’t done here, and reminders of change are evident all around. Many slope side boulders seem balanced “just so”, and you wonder if you should make any loud noises along the way. This recently split boulder causes you pause to wonder about the forces at quietly at work out here.
All-in-all, a nice hike to start the season among old and new friends.