There are two season’s for Sportsman’s Club hiking: Snowbird Season from October 1st to April 30 and Firebird Season from May 1 to September 30.
During Snowbird Season there is a C hike every other Thursday alternating with a B hike every other Thursday. When there is a B hike on Thursday, there is a C hike some other day that week, usually Monday or Friday, but occasionally Wednesday.
During Firebird Season there is a hike every Thursday with departs from Sun City West at 6 AM to try to beat the heat.
Hikes are classified according to the degree of difficulty, and each individual must gauge his/her ability and stamina for each event. Numerous hikes are scheduled each month for all levels of ability.
To allow you to determine which hikes are within your ability, the following general descriptions of hikes will be used:
C-Hike – Easy to moderate (some inclines), 3 to 5 miles.
B-Hike – Moderate (some steep/challenging terrain), 5 to 8 miles.
Hikers meet in the R.H. Johnson parking lot off either R.H. Johnson Boulevard or Meeker Boulevard between the Library and the Bowling Alley (parking area aisle No. 14), 15 minutes prior to scheduled departure time. Bring your Rec Card number and an emergency contact phone number for sign in.
Obligations of Sportsman’s Club of SCW Hikers
These items are designed to make your hiking experience not only enjoyable, but also safe.
- Each hiker is ultimately accountable to himself or herself.
- The hike leaders will help get you from Sun City West to the trailhead, will guide you through the hike, will monitor the pace and general demeanor of the hike for comfort and safety, and get you back to your vehicle at the trailhead at the end of the hike. After that, hikers may go to seek food and drink, or return to Sun City West-each car load will make that decision.
- Each hiker must know his/her capabilities for hiking: how far one can hike, how much elevation change one can endure, how fast one can hike, how well one can handle the trail ( sand, rocks, slippery surfaces, watery trails, etc.).
- Starting with “C” hikes is a good way to assess one hiking capability. Then, if desired, moving to the “B” hikes for more distance and elevation changes may be reasonable. Ask the leaders if one has questions about this.
- Building stamina by walking often is a good idea. The Lizard Acres Urban Walking Guide brochure is available at the Recreation centers and the Library. These walks within Sun City West can be easily accessed for training and stamina building. Hikers who also play golf can walk the golf course while playing to help build stamina-start with walking nine holes and then build up to the full eighteen.
- Wear durable hiking boots (ideally over the ankle) with strong cleated soles. Use socks designed to wick moisture away from the skin and to provide cushioning.
- Carry enough water to maintain personal hydration for the length of the hike. Drinking water instead of coffee the morning of a hike will help maintain adequate hydration also. Most of the hikes will have restroom facilities at the trailhead, but not always. The warmer the weather and the longer the hike, the more water one must have; One to three liters depending on weather.
- Bring a snack for use during the rest breaks to help avoid fatigue and weakness. The hike will be more enjoyable for everyone if all are safe and healthy.
- Dress appropriately for the predicted temperature and weather conditions. Learn to check forecasts and to be prepared to dress in layers if needed. Do not forget gloves when the temperatures drop through the winter months.
- A wide-brimmed hat is recommended to protect the head and neck. Remember that we do get some wind at times in Arizona, so a chin strap is wise also.
- Hiking staffs/trekking poles are highly recommended for stability, especially on steep and/or rocky terrain. It is embarrassing to sustain an injury fall while carrying, rather than using, one’s poles.
- Other hiking gear includes sun block, a compass, a whistle, a knife, and a comb or other device to remove cactus stickers. Remember, everything in the desert can hurt you!
- Listen for trail whistles: One blast = stop, two blasts = resume, and three blasts = emergency.
- Carry identification information including emergency contact numbers and any medical information needed, such as “I have diabetes and use insulin”, etc.
- Cell phones use is limited to GPS, Pedometer, photography and emergency calls. No casual personal or business calls are allowed during the hike-this is for safety…
- Hikers must stay behind the hike leader and in front of the rear sweep at all times.
Hiking is great exercise. Join us! Remember to always think of hiking safety; boots, poles and plenty of water. For “B” hikes contact Joe Kayser 623-582-9157, email JKAYSER3@COX.NET.
Upcoming C hikes: Notice- Hike details are subject to change due to weather and other unforeseen situations. The C hike leader will notify those hikers on the C Hike email list of such changes, when necessary. Also, more details about the hike will be sent to the C Hike email list a few days before each hike.
If anyone wants to be on the “C” Hiker email list, send an email to Hugh at email@example.com or call 623-208-0675.
For other local hiking information, go to www.maricopacountyparks.net.
SUMMER 2019 HIKES
6 AM Thursday, August 1, 2019 West Wing-Sunrise Loop Trail. We will hike to the east past West Wing Elementary School and begin the Sunrise Loop Trail. This will be about 4.5 miles with an elevation change of 430 feet and total gain of 750 feet. The hike consists of three loops on an in and out Trail.
6 AM Thursday, August 8, 2019 Agua Fria Trailhead to hike The Maricopa Trail, segment 13.
This trail takes one to the beginning of the Waddell Canal where water enters and exits Lake Pleasant and above the Camp Dyer Diversion Dam and Hank Raymond Lake (formerly known as Lower Lake), part of the water storage for the Maricopa Water District. It follows a wash crossing it several times and then climbs out near the Pleasant Harbor Resort on 87th Ave. It is an in and out hike of about 5 miles with 450 feet of elevation change and 1050 feet of gain.
6 AM Thursday, August 15, 2019 Skyline Regional Park near Buckeye, AZ.
This hike of about 3.75 miles starts at the trail head parking lot and goesacross the Bridge, turns left onto the Turnbuckle Trail, connects to Granite Falls Trail which comes back to Turnbuckle Trail and back to the parking lot. Elevation change is 285 feet and gain is about 600 feet.
6 AM Thursday, August 22, 2019 Desert Hills Trailhead.
Sidewinder and Ocotillo Trails loop hiked 5.2 miles with 360 feet of elevation change and 530 feet of gain. Tom McLean will lead.
6 AM Thursday August 29, 2019 White Tank Mountain Regional Park
The hike will start at Area 7 parking lot along Waddell Trail to Ford Canyon Trail to Ironwood Trail back to Ford Canyon and Waddell Trails. This is a lollipop loop hike of 4 miles with 250 feet of elevation change and 570 feet of gain
B Hikers at Arrowhead Point
C Hikers on Walkin’ Jim Trail
C Hikers crossing the Agua Fria
Hikers on the Agua Fria
C Hikers on Dixie Mountain
C Hikers at Balanced Rock
B Hikers at Phoenix Sonoran Preserve
Hikers at Lake Pleasant
B Hikers at Spur Cross Ranch
Hikers on Walkin’ Jim Tail
Hikers at Lake Pleasant
Sportsman’s Club hikers at White Tank Mountains 2018.
B Hikers near the top of Flatiron. Superstition Mountains Lost Dutchman area to Flatiron via Syphon Draw. Flatiron is 3,000 feet above the trailhead.
Sportsman’s Club Hikers on Maricopa Trail.
B Hike taken two hours into a seven hour hike.
First hike of 2018. Sportsman’s Club hikers on Black Canyon Trail.
Sportsman’s Hikers on the Maricopa Trail Feb. 16, 2018.
First hike of 2018. Sportsman’s Club hikers cross the Agua Fria River.