May 28th 2012 - Chinamen
May 20th 2012 - Eagle Rock
April 27th 2012 - Martinez Cabin and Canyon Trail
April 26th 2012 - Woodpecker Mine / Ajax Mine
April, 24th 2012 - New River Trail
Apr 23rd 2012 - Crown King - AZ
Mar 24th 2012 - Independence Trails
Aug 28th 2011 - Redcone
Aug 21st 2011 - Mosquito/Weston Pass
Jul 22nd, 2011 - Holy Cross
Jul 19th, 2011 - Spring Creek
Jun 19th, 2011 - Twin Cone Peaks
Jun 5th & 12th, 2011 - Scouting/Work trip to Eagle Rock
May 22nd, 2011 - Chinaman Gulch
May 15th, 2011 - Slaugterhouse Gulch
Jan 30th, 2011 - Hotel Gulch
|Martinez Cabin and Canyon Trail|
|Date:||April 27th 2012|
|Trip Leader:||Mike Borum|
|Members Present:||Rob Cooper, Sue Fisher, Bob Novak, Russ Rose, Mac & Levi McMullen, Dave Peaslee|
|Guests Present:||Amanda, Jim, Wayne, Gill, JC|
Martinez Cabin and Canyon Trail, Florence Jct., AZ, April 27, 2012
Although it's set in our consciousness that this is our last day of wheeling in Arizona, we're all still chomping at the bit to get this show started. The sunshine beckoned us early and soon we were gassed up, aired down and ready to hit the trail.
The bumpy, winding road took us through the most amazing scenery we've seen all week. The hills are alive with blooming cactus and birds of every type. As we wandered up and down and through the Sonoran desert, we finally found our first obstacle, not even yet at the trailhead. It's a technical step down, with several lines to try. Me, Mac, Rob, Sue, Russ, and Bob took the fun line that required perfect placement of tires and low range braking. Jim and JC weren't quite ready to tax their rigs so soon, so they skirted the high wall to the right. A quick few miles later and we were finally on the trail towards Martinez cabin.
The cabin was long ago deserted, but 3 old guys on ATVs were enjoying the shade when we arrive just at lunchtime, and they were more than happy to confirm that we were soon in for an amazing ride. We spent about 1/2 hour having lunch, then jumped in our rigs.
Quick enough we found a boulder field that rivaled Spring Creek. The trail winds along in a wash similar to the Woodpecker/Ajax Mine trails we tackled the day before. Although not quite as challenging, there was plenty of difficulty if a tire slipped off any of the thousands of large rocks trying to grab your diffs and spring hangers.
Around a bend and there's the Martinez Mine. WOW! It still has a lot of equipment and the building is remarkably intact. There are several mine shafts, both vertical and horizontal to explore, and we enjoyed poking around for a bit and taking lots of pictures.
The boulder field gave way to a long, steep climb out of the wash and towards the fantastic vistas of southern Arizona. Mac found himself doing a wheel stand on a somewhat innocuous little ledge, and it took a bit of ballast from the group to get his rig back on all fours.
After we crested the ridge, we found The Luge. This is a harrowing step down along a tilting section that wants to grab your top in the worst way. Then, whne you finally negotiate that section, you are forced to drop down a 4-foot ledge onto loose rocks, and then you have to literally slide down slalom-style on another 100 feet of more of loose, rounded rocks before getting to the bottom. As the trip leader, I was the guinea pig. Let me just say there was a lot of puckering going on while trying not to stand on the brakes and let the tires roll of the ledge and through the slippery trail below it.
We again stopped at the cabin and explored a small cave that was purported to have been the local brothel. This is also where the neat rock formation called "Woman Who Looks At The Sky" is found. It's also where Rob's front track bar decided to break again, after just being welded the previous day. Out comes Mac's welder again (he claimed he will honor all warranties in regards to his trail fixes0, and soon we were moving.
It was a long road back to the highway, but one we will remember fondly for a very long time.
So long, Arizona. It was a blast!