This is another green monster adventure into Arizona’s backcountry. Just for a refresher- the green monster is a 1995 jeep wrangler that has been lifted slightly so 33X12.5 tires will fit under it and it has lockers front and rear.
Today it took the Log Corral Trail. Unfortunately the trail won. If you would like to try your luck then head out on the Beeline Highway and turn off just past mile marker 212. There is a highway sign saying you just crossed Sycamore Creek here. There is plenty of parking for unloading horses and offroad vehicles and then the trail heads up the creek. You cross the creek a number of times and you drive over a few sections of large river rocks but nothing serious. Just a short way into the canyon things get really pretty. Much of the trail is overhung with branches from tall cottonwoods, sycamores and mesquite trees. Aside from a few rocky sections the trail is really nice smooth sand.
Approximately a mile in from the highway you will pass the Log Corral Trail sign. It’s always nice to get conformation that you are on the trail you want to be on. If you research this jeep trail ahead of time you know there is something called the boulder garden up ahead. This boulder garden is the only thing in your way to a log corral. From there on it is supposed to be smooth sandy washes all the way to Bartlett Lake which is about 20 miles from the highway.
So the green monster crawled over and around a few sections of boulders. A bit bumpy but no sweat. Then around a bend the real boulder obstacle appeared. This called for a foot reconnoitering. People on foot need to crawl up over a dry waterfall (if the creek is running full) with oil pan busting rocks jutting up in all the right places. These boulders are huge. The only good thing is this goes on for only about a hundred feet then you hit sand again. Today the green monster’s driver elected to hike and let the monster live for another adventure. It would have crawled over this boulder garden, probably, but probably would have left a few parts on the rocks. Some might have been important.
Hiking turned out to be a wise choice because about a quarter mile further up the canyon there is another big pointy boulder right in the worst spot. It was a great day for a hike anyway. In fact this trail is about the nicest place to hike with just a gentle grade, plenty of shade and mostly smooth sand. Unfortunately this hiker turned around after about a mile so never reached the Log Corral. Save that for another outing. Since most of this trail is in a canyon along a creek bed you probably don’t want to be here if it’s raining. Unless you’re driving a submarine or an amphibious tank.