Superstitions After the Crash

On the day before Thanksgiving, a twin-engine plane crashed into the Flatiron formation of the Superstition Mountains killing all aboard. It made national news, but the best coverage I’ve found is from the local Apache Junction News. ( Don’t dawdle, they do not have a permanent URL to this story, so its gone when they put out a new issue.

Apache Junction is the town immediately adjacent to the Superstition Wilderness and the Lost Dutchman State Park . It is a distant suburb of Phoenix.

Rescue workers and investigators have concluded operations on the site, and the area is open to the public. There are no designated trails up Flatiron, but there are several unofficial routes climbing it. Jacob’s Crosscut and Siphon Draw are the closest designated trails to the crash-site.

Flatiron photo by Joe Bartels

The Forest Service has requested (insists, really) that any remaining debris be left undisturbed. In particular, they do not want anyone else to bring found body parts to the ranger station (this has apparently already happened).

Despite those sad circumstances, there’s really no better time to hike around the western Supes. I’m going to steer you a bit away from the crash to the Bluff Springs Loop from Peralta TH.

I wrote about this hike in D&O Tonto. The FS is redoing their online trail guides, and the current description have only mileage, elevation, wilderness rules and a note that the route is heavily used. If you’re a member (and that’s free) HikeAz has a good description.

This is a crowded part of the wilderness on weekends, and I will be part of that problem, since I lan to hike this myself on Saturday (12/3/11). Maybe I’ll see you there.

Behind-the-hike segments resume next week.

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