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Friday, September 19, 2008

SIPHON DRAW

SIPHON DRAW Superstition Mountains Hovering above Lost Dutchman State Park like a bow of a ship, the prominent rock formation known as the “Flatiron” cuts an impressive figure on the local horizon and holds major appeal for intrepid hikers. Although the official Siphon Draw trail ends at the 1.6-mile point, hikers can continue on to the Flatiron by following a series of white dots spray painted onto the rocks. Some hikers opt to bush whack the off-trail segment while others prefer to use the easier “girls routes” (ones without the clothing remnants and blood stains), either option requires some tricky vertical maneuvers over sheer rock, boulder fields and a couple of perpendicular hand-over-foot scrambles. After scaling a final 25-foot wall of rubble, the path flattens out for an easy traipse to the top and incredible views of the surrounding Superstition Wilderness. Getting back down the rugged trail is more complicated than going up. Trust me; follow the girls. LENGTH: 4.8 miles round trip ELEVATION: 2080'-4861' RATING: Difficult GETTING THERE: From Phoenix, drive east on Highway 60 to Apache Junction and then connect to Highway 88 (Idaho Road) and continue to Lost Dutchman State Park. Once inside the park, follow the signs to the Siphon Draw trailhead. There is a fee per vehicle and free trail maps are available at the pay station. Siphon Draw may also be accessed via Jacob's Crosscut Trail and other points on the Tonto National Forest. Check these sites before heading out: http://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/tonto/recreation/hiking/recarea/?recid=35451&actid=50

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