ABC and Sycamore Canyon/Taylor Cabin

So My latest adventure with the Arizona Backpackers Club (ABC) too me to Sycamore Canyon which is just west of Sedona.  It has all the beauty of Sedona without all the people/homes/roads.  Sycamore canyon has been noted as one of Arizona’s great backpacking trips.  And I would fully agree with this.

We camped at the trail head on Friday night.  Saturday morning we got up and headed down into the canyon.  The trail down in and up to the cabin is 10 miles each way with an elevation loss/gain of 1,750 ft.  We stopped at the crossing of Sycamore Creek and took a break for lunch and waited for everyone to catch up.  After this we headed the remaining miles up to Taylor Cabin.

When we pulled into Taylor cabin there was already someone there.  There was this older guy sitting there with a Dog (That obviously really didn’t like me).  The guy reminded me of what you would think of a typical hermit.  I guess this guy has been coming up to the cabin a few times a year for the past 25 years!  After talking to him a bit Lucky asked if we could look around in the cabin.  I was really cool inside and had a fireplace, stove, table, some canned goods, and other misc stuff.   The cabin was built with one side being a large boulder.  Up the side of the boulder came this crooked chimney.

After leaving the guy to himself and the barking dog we headed towards the river and set up camp under a grove of trees.  Then we gathered firewood, filtered our water, set up tents and the like.  Bonnie made our fire and had been designated the fire keeper for the night.

In the morning we woke up to quite the surprise.  The Creek that was previously dry was raging in the morning.  The water level in the pool we had filled our water up the previous day had risen at least three feet.  The heat from the day before must have melted quite a bit of snow.  We all thought we were going to have to cross the creek on the way back.  But lo and behold the creek was just as dry as the day before.  The water must have either gone underground or filled up other ponds.

After everyone had made it back to the vehicles we headed to Old Town Cottonwood for some beer and Mexican food.  I’ll find the name of the great restaurant we ate at later and post it here.

Sycamore Canyon


The ABC’s and Haunted Canyon

I joined up a group on for backpackers earlier this month.  ABC(Arizona Backpackers Club) had a fairly easy hike planned last weekend up in the Superstition Mountians last weekend so I jumped on the idea.   I thought it would be a great idea to try one of the easier backpacks so I could gauge myself on how I did.  So I called up my siblings and they were more than willing to borrow me the gear I needed and ship it down.  What I didn’t get from them I ended up getting from a friend of mine Mike.  He is actually a friend’s dad and he cooks us amazing dinners all the time.  He has grown to be another father type figure that is nice to have down here in Arizona.

So after i had all my basic gear I went out and did a little shopping for the odds and ends of things I would need plus my grocery list.  I wasn’t packed and ready until around 10 PM friday night.  I had to get up at 5:45 AM so I could get to the meeting point before 7.  I was actually the last person there since I had to stop for some Tums and cough drops.  After that we packed up and drove out to trailhead via a mining road.

The hike up was around 6 miles of mostly following/crossing a creek with the exception of hiking up one hillside to avoid having to swim through a slot canyon.  On the way up we passed through forests that you would not think of when you think Arizona.  Especially when you consider we were only an hour drive away from Phoenix itself.  We passed a beautiful spring and about a mile later we ended up at where we set for camp. It turns out I had the brightest tent in the group as the one I borrowed is a bright yellow.

We got to camp and had everything set up around 12:30 PM.  So we were all thinking … now what?  Some of us hike up a little ways further to Toney’s Cabin which is an old abandoned cabin that has been turned into a hiker/horseback hut.  From there we had a beautiful view of the surrounding mountains and cliffs.  The light was horrible as it was noon so I knew i would be coming back there around sunset to get a decent picture.

After that Mike the leader told us about a nearby cave, “Skull Cave”.  So most the group decided to go check that out.  What a unexpected treat for me.  After scrambling up a cliff face to the entrance of the cave we were able to go back in to a decently deep cave.  Inside you had to scramble over rocks and walk through all the dried up guano.  At the end of our caving adventures there was a hole in the ground that was at least 15-20 feet deep.  It looked like at the bottom it veered off to one side and could have possibly went back quite a ways.  But, since we didn’t have the proper gear that was as far as we made it.

After we got back to camp we sat down and cooked our dinners.  Later that night while sitting by the fire telling stories a full moon came out and surprised me with a moon dog.  It was a really cool ring of color surrounding the moon.  So I set up my camera to try and get some pictures.

That night around 12:30 it started raining and basically continued to rain through the next day on our hike out.  On the way driving back out of the mine we passed a few Javelinas.  They were gone too quick and I was back seat in a truck so I wasn’t able to get any pictures of them though :(.

Despite having it rain on our parade I had an amazing time with the group and am looking forward to other adventures with them.

Here is a link to the Meetup for this trip:

ABC – Haunted Canyon on