Scouting the Mogollon Rim

Last Sunday, I tossed some light hiking gear and our dog into the Subaru and finally got out to scout part of the Rim Road for our Mogollon Rim bikepacking ride. The scouting trip had been put off for months due to poor weather, emergencies with friends, and last minute things that came up to put things on hold. It was nice to finally get some time out on the rim to check for water sources and camping spots.

After making my way down from Flagstaff, along Lake Mary road, and finally to the 87, Apollo and I ended up in Long Valley. The winds were whipping along the highway, making the gigantic lifted trucks with their redneck toy-hauler trailers rock in the wind and occasionally invading the shoulder in the incoming traffic lane. Many of the hungover bubbas who passed me, while I was going the speed limit, had to suddenly slam on their brakes to avoid some deer in the road and a semi who wasn't quite able to pull over all the way in time. I had no trouble being in a lower profile vehicle and not being in any kind of rush to get home to watch sports and swill cheap beer.

We finally ended up at the turn off for Rim Road(aka FR-300) around 7:30 in the morning. I let Apollo out to stretch his legs and get a drink of water from Baker Lake. I tested out the new MSR Guardian water filter I picked up a few months earlier and filled my Nalgene with what was hopefully clean water.
Baker Lake isn't really a lake. It's more of a big puddle.

Lucky for me, no intestinal trouble followed. The water tasted good as well.

We loaded back up into the car and headed off to the next water source labelled on the GPS. We ended up on a washed out road filled with loose rocks and basketball sized boulders littering the trail. This would obviously not be a good route to get to a second resupply by bike, but we took the route anyway for the sake of exploration. We ended up along the rim with some fantastic views of East Bray Creek and Gerenimo Estates.
Apollo helping check the water to see if it was good for a resupply point

The drop-off was a bit more jarring in this area, and I got a bit of vertigo trying to get a decent picture. This vantage point seemed much safer.
I nice view from the edge of the road
Looking back to the road that would return me to FR-300
After taking in the view for a bit, we continued along to the next outlook, searching for a decent relaxation spot. We were passed by a few overzealous lifted trucks that kicked up massive clouds of dust and a Honda minivan with a nearly flat rear passenger tire. We didn't encounter the van again, so perhaps they made it to their destination or broke down before our turn-around point.

This spot was much too windy to enjoy, but it did have some nice views.

Apollo stretching out his back, or rolling in something dead. I couldn't tell which.

Amazing views at this campsite were ruined by biting winds that cut through my wool layers far too quickly.

We moved onto the next water source, which wasn't as easily accessible because the road had been blocked to motor vehicles. It was only half a mile out, so we went for a short walk to stretch our legs after another run in with an overzealous gas guzzler in a rush to get to the highway.

There were lots of flowers like this growing along the blocked road

Apollo scouting ahead and checking for good spots to pee

The water was exceptionally clear with a minimum of cloudiness to it. Another good spot to refill my Nalgene.
After a nice walk we continued our ride past a few fenced in and overgrown areas that would make water access difficult, so we continued onto Lost Lake, which was also fenced in.
Aging sign for the Lost Lake Aspen Regeneration Project.
Shortly after passing Lost Lake, we turned onto 300-C to scout out our campsite for the weekend. We drove over some slick rock stair stepping down the trail to Myrtle Point. A lesser car, such as the minivan, would have been in very bad shape.

This spot has a pre-built firepit and his a big enough space for the tents and gear

The view is spectacular here

More photos to come after we make the trip out there on our bikes.

Here's a link to the updated trip if anyone is interested in trying it out themselves


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