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PAUC Cherry – Goat Peak Trail – Mingus Mtn – Jerome Ride
May 16 @ 8:00 AM - 5:30 PM

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Kraig KosierBob Maitzen
Bill Poppo
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Saturday, May 16, 2020 Cherry – Goat Peak Trail – Mingus Mtn – Jerome Ride
This is another one of my favorite Four Points of the Compass rides to escape the heat. The Cherry – Mingus Mtn – Jerome area is expecting sunny 51°–81° temps on Saturday. We have not done this club ride for a while and enjoyed ourselves doing an exploratory trail conditions ride there last week.
WARNING: This is not a typical “Bob” club ride. This ride is for experienced veteran riders that have the ability to ride at medium-to-high speeds on rocky uneven terrain. The FR132 Goat Peak Trail and FR413 trail around Mingus Mountain is rated a Moderate-Difficult (Level 2-3; Blue-Red) difficulty. This ride is not for the faint of heart or for those having issues with heights and/or riding narrow shelf canyon trails with 500′ drop-offs. You must know your vehicle and be an alert driver to make this ride.
IF YOU HAVE AN EXTRA SEAT IN YOUR SXS OR UTV FOR THE RIDE, EMAIL ME OR FACEBOOK MESSAGE ME TO LET ME KNOW. Member guests and friends would like to go on this fun scenic ride. RIDE INCENTIVE: Preferential placement to front of the pack to those offering an extra open seat in your SxS or UTV for the ride.

  • Destination ride to historic Jerome on narrow steep rocky forest road trails around Mingus Mountain. This is an 80-85 mile ride that takes 8.5 hours at a minimum with a fast small group. Elevations range from 4500′ to 7800′.
  • We will be traveling from I-17 exit 278 and SR169 from high desert near Cherry on FR96 onto the Goat Peak Trail FR132 and then around the Mingus Mountain Loop Trail FR413 to Jerome with various scenic stops along the way.
  • The Powell Springs Campground with vaulted toilets is CLOSED. [N34° 34.718′ W112° 04.162′]
  • We plan to eat lunch in the United Verde Mine parking lot behind the Fire Dept in Jerome. Most of the restaurants and businesses are temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 Stay-at-Home public health directives.
  • On our return, a second destination highlight will be to the top of the 7815′ Mingus Mountain Vista Observation Point and Hang Glider Launch Platform overlooking the red rock Cottonwood/Sedona/Verde Valley area 4500′ below for one of those “Wow!” Kodak moments.

On Saturday, May 16th, at 8:00AM, I will take a few experienced veteran riders on an 80-85 mile ride with scenic meet-and-greet stops through some varied and beautiful high desert / pine tree mountain scenery. Bring a camera for those Kodak moments. Extra fuel is usually not required but each driver should know their vehicle’s gas consumption and plan accordingly for changing elevations and speeds. I recommend being prepared so I carry a 2-gallon Kolpin container of gas just in case. You CANNOT buy gas in Jerome or along this route.

The first leg of the ride will be to travel the high desert landscape northwest on FR96 to Cherry Creek Road with a side trail rest stop near the CLOSED Powell Springs Campground [N34° 34.718′ W112° 04.162′]. We will then ride the Goat Peak Trail (FR132) up to Mingus Mountain and loop the eastern slope on FR413 and descend down the narrow shelf road to Jerome for lunch. On our return, the group will ride SR89A for 7.5 miles on pavement to the FR104 dirt road turnoff and head up the western slope of Mingus Mountain to the 7815’ Vista Observation Point and Hang Glider Launch Platform as a second destination highlight. We will then backtrack on FR104/FR413 to FR132 for our return to the staging area with another rest stop near the closed Powell Springs Campground before our return on FR96 to the staging area.

The description of the Goat Peak Trail and Mingus Mountain Loop Trail can be found on pages 263-268 of the 2001 edition of the “Backcountry Adventures – Arizona” (by Peter Massey & Jeanne Wilson). With its many changing elevations, you will need to be an active driver and keep your eyes on the road even though the scenic elevations are beautiful to look at.
Depending on the size of the group, the ride will take 8.5-9.0 hours for the 80-85 mile route which includes a 45-minute lunch in Jerome and a number of scenic meet-and-greet stops. Pack a lunch, snack & beverages for the trail.

The 80-85 mile route is rated as a MODERATE-DIFFICULT level trail rating (Level 2-3, BLUE-RED) with some EXTREME Level 4, BLACK trail sections. Definition: Will have MANY rough spots that are off-camber; many hilly/loose rock/bedrock spots and many steep 500′ slopes; recommended for riders with at least 3-4 years riding experience with ability to ride at medium-to-high speeds on rocky uneven terrain. Parts of the trail follow steep canyon shelf roads and washes, which can change after heavy rains and flooding. UTVs / SxSs / ROVs okay on this 60″ trail. Low range gear and 4WD recommended for the loose rock areas. YOU NEED TO BE AN EXPERIENCED RIDER AND KNOW YOUR VEHICLE TO MAKE THIS TRAIL. For safety concerns, sport quads cannot participate and I don’t recommend passengers on Two-Up ATVs due to the loose rocky uneven terrain of FR132 & FR413.
Easy / Moderate / Difficult / Extreme = Green / Blue / Red / Black = Levels 1 / 2 / 3 / 4.

The staging area is near the I-17 Dewey-Humboldt exit 278 on SR169 but not visible from the road. I drive a white Ford Expedition SUV with a white 5×14 trailer and ride a black Polaris 500 Sportsman X2 ATV. The ride will depart at 8:00AM so allow plenty of time to arrive there early and unload your vehicle and sign-in for the 7:45AM pre-ride safety meeting. I plan to return to the staging area at 5:00PM.
DIRECTIONS TO THE STAGING AREA: Take I-17 to the Dewey-Humboldt exit 278. Turn west (left) over the freeway and go 1.2 miles on SR169 to FR96. The dirt road FR96 turnoff is just past the long guard rail at Mile Marker 14 on the north-side of SR169. Go 0.1 miles north on FR96 to the staging area. Overflow parking is also at 0.3 miles. You can view it on the Google Maps Satellite view at 34°30’59.1″N 112°00’47.0″W (or enter the Google map coordinates 34.516417, -112.013067). Use our Google Map Feature at the bottom of the ride description to get turn-by-turn cellphone instructions from your home on your way.

SOCIAL DISTANCING BETWEEN MEMBERS AND VEHICLES: Please observe public health directives of 6’-8’ between people and gatherings of <10 people. If necessary, we will go out on multiple flights to adhere to the public health guidelines. No handshaking or high-fives or hugging. Try to exercise caution and stay apart and off to the side of individuals instead of being downwind of them when talking. All vehicles will maintain adequate spacing to limit dust conditions and social distancing. If you don’t feel well or have not practiced self-quarantine for the past two weeks, DO NOT come on this ride and put others at risk! All participants MUST wear a mask or dust mask, kerchief, bandana, scarf, or other means of protective personal equipment for their personal safety as well as for the safety of other participants.

I am looking for an experienced member with a radio to volunteer as my tailgunner. Otherwise, a responsible rider will be appointed at the staging area. Other riders with radios can volunteer as mid-pack wingmen to maintain radio contact.

Leader, mid-pack wingmen, and tailgunner will be on GMRS/FRS Channel 5 (sub-channel 0) in case you want to bring your walkie-talkies or CB / HAM radios. The corresponding UHF channel frequency is 462.6625 MHz depending on your radio. I highly recommend bringing a walkie-talkie to listen to approaching traffic and trail conditions.

All ATVs, UTVs, & SxSs should be street-legal and have the Arizona Off Highway Vehicle Decal sticker. Dress appropriately and keep hydrated. BRING A TRAIL LUNCH, SNACKS, AND BEVERAGES. Bring a camera for those Kodak moments. TOTAL MILEAGE WITH SIDE TRIPS IS APPROXIMATELY 80-85 MILES. Extra fuel is usually not required but each rider should know their machine’s fuel consumption on changing elevations/speeds. Gasoline is not available along the route or in Jerome. We should arrive back at the staging area between 5:00-5:30PM.
Helmet that is properly fitted, fastened, and has a USDOT safety rating for those 18 years of age and younger who ride on an OHV. Riders in an OHV such as a ROV / UTV / SxS or similar vehicle, while recommended for safety, do not require a helmet unless a rider is under 18 years of age. The Phoenix ATV/UTV Club promotes the use of helmets on all its rides. Eye protection is required for operators of vehicles not equipped with a windshield. You should use common sense for eye protection, bandanas, scarves, and dust masks for large group riding due to the dust conditions anyway.
All vehicles will maintain adequate spacing to limit dust conditions and social distancing. All participants MUST wear a mask or dust mask, kerchief, bandana, scarf, or other means of protective personal equipment for their personal safety as well as for the safety of other participants.

All Phoenix ATV/UTV Club members, visitors, and guests are expected to have appropriate vehicle registration, license, and personal insurance and to operate their vehicles in a responsible manner. The Phoenix ATV/UTV Club is a responsible member of the OHV riding community. As such the Club promotes safe and responsible operation of OHVs during club rides. Arizona Revised Statute 28-1381 prohibits the operation of motorized vehicles, including OHVs, while under the influence of any substance that may impair the operator’s judgment or ability. Therefore, the Club prohibits the consumption or use of any substance during a club ride that has the potential to impair the operator’s judgment or ability.
“Come join us for a fun ride and explore some local historical trails and make new friends!”
Live to Ride… Ride to Live! Happy Trails…
Bob Maitzen
Phoenix ATV/UTV Club
(480) 363-7723
[email protected]
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