Arizona Trailblazers Hiking Club
Chalk Canyon Day Hike
when Thursday, October 26, 20223
where Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area
the hike     Chalk Canyon Petroglyphs and Metates.
    Moderate but come prepared for possible water in creek crossings.
    The landscape out here is amazing!
    Our route will be north on the Spur Cross Road, which remains on the east side of Cave Creek for about a mile.
    There the road/trail crosses to the west side of Cave Creek, and a short distance later enters the Tonto National Forest. The trail continues up the canyon's bottom, following an old forest road, FR48, crossing the creek several times. We could be rock hopping, splashing or strolling over dry creek bed.
    The route we will follow is a section of the Spur Cross Trail, which is also part of the Valley-circling Maricopa Trail. This becomes the old Forest Service road #48 just beyond the Tonto Park sign for #4 for Skull Mesa and the bluff.
    The trail is well worn and maintained as it follows the old road to the Spur Cross Park boundary. From there the trail is not maintained but easy to follow on the old jeep trail on the ridge. This dirt track that hangs on the hillside has acres of saguaros, prickly pear, ocotillo and cholla.
    At a point about 0.8 miles past the turnoff to Cave Creek Trail #4 the old road has been washed out by numerous flash floods over the years and route finding can be a little tricky. We’ll cross the creek 2 more times.
    Just barely off trail is a area of concentrated metates and petroglyphs. You will see pictographs, fossils, boulders with multiple metates and pottery shards.
    Please note, the mileage and time are an estimate.
What to Bring:
•  Sturdy hiking boots
•  Hiking poles if desired
•  At least 3 liters of water
•  Hat, sunblock, sunglasses
•  Lunch or snacks
•  Camera
•  Your smiles!
distance 9 miles
time 4 - 5 hours
EC +-1000' elevation change
elevations 2325' (Trailhead)
type rin and out
starting at Spur Cross Trailhead
on trail 100%; Spur Cross Road, FR48 Trail,
rating "C+"     Rate yourself as a hiker.
dogs allowed no
cost $3 (exact change perfered) per person at Spur Cross Ranch. Sharing gas expenses with the driver.
The club also allows voluntary contributions of $5 per non-member.
weather Cave Creek
leader    You must email the leader to confirm.
meet 7:00 AM at Spur Cross Trailhead. Feel free to plan carpools; I will meet at the trailhead. I am hoping the early start gives us ample daylight to explore and, with a strong yet comfortable pace, take pictures and enjoy the surroundings.
•  Take Cave Creek Road north from Phoenix into the town of Cave Creek.
Turn left onto Spur Cross Road for about four miles.
Spur Cross Road soon turns into a smooth dirt road for the last mile, where it ends at the Spur Cross Ranch on the right.
Parking for Spur Cross Trailhead is on the right.

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updated October 6, 2023 © Copyright 2023, Arizona Trailblazers.  All rights reserved.