View Full Version : Hackberry Creek a.k.a. Powerline Trail (3.5)

05-21-2006, 07:56 PM
Hackberry Creek also known as Powerline Trail

Trail Rating: 3.5

The trail is located east of Superior. The trail starts at the Oak Flat campground, which is approximately two miles past the tunnel on U.S. 60. and makes a figure eight through rocky high desert terrain. The trail follows along the powerlines to the east and through Hackberry Creek to the west. The trail passes through a general area known as Queen Creek Canyon, Oak Flat, Devil's Canyon or Hackberry Creek. All are used to describe the area to those familiar with it.

Once you are in the green valley you can either take the road on the west side of the valley and head up (South) through Hackberry Creek (like the Wells book describes) or you can take the road on the East side of the valley, which goes up (South) along the powerlines.

If you take the road along the powerlines take a short side trip to Devil's Canyon. To get there, take the road that goes east at the south end of the green valley where the windmill is. Follow the shelf road East along a creek and it will dead end. Park and take a short hike to an awesome view of the canyon. The breathtaking view is worthwhile.

After the side trip follow the road back down to the windmill and turn left. You are now back on the main trail. Keep following the road south and you will come to a rutted area where you can test out your vehicle's flex. Keep following the road south along the powerlines and eventually you will see a lesser road to your right. This is the optional bypass road around the obstacle and the uphill boulder garden that you will see about a hundred yards in front of you. The bypass will take you to a T intersection.

The obstacle described in the Wells book has been filled in and repaired so it's not much of a challenge anymore. Once up and over the obstacle, proceed up the boulder garden. This will take you to a fork. Go right (West) and you will eventually see where the lesser bypass road intersects. keep going west until you come to another fork. Go right. Straight will take you uphill (West, FR315) and eventually to 177 to Winkleman. Follow the road to your right and you will head north toward Hackberry creek.

You eventually come to another wood barbed wire entry. Prior to starting your descent through Oak Creek and later Hackberry Creek, look for a large boulder to your right. To your left is another cattle pond. This boulder has some interesting Indian petroglyphs on it. Continue following the road through the canyon which will lead back to the green valley. Take the same switch back road up and back down the rocky hill and on to the rock fin. There is an optional road around the the rock fin that is a little more challenging if you decide to take it. After the rock fin just follow the same route you came in on.

The rock fin

Steep rocky hill after the rock fin

Side trip to Devil's Canyon

Devil's Canyon

Optional obstacle

Heading north through Hackberry Creek on the west side of the trail


Heading up the boulder garden just after the obstacle

Hackberry Creek with snow

12-09-2006, 11:42 AM





11-12-2007, 10:01 PM
Jim and I, and my two sons went out to Hackberry Creek today and a lot has changed since the last time I was out there a few months ago. Our usual radio chatter was very minimal this trip because I think both of us were pretty depressed over what we saw.

With the addition of the alternate switchback that was graded a few months back, half the trail up the Hackberry Creek side has been graded all the way to the ledge. Also before the ledge a large area has been cleared for another drill rig. Very sad to see!

Also part of the road heading to Devil's Canyon has been graded and another graded road has been carved that Y's off to the north of the Devil's Canyon Rd. This apparently is the main thoroughfare for equipment and vehicles in and out of the canyon.

Also as somebody mentioned in another thread, the large boulder that was the main obstacle to get around or over on Mcgyver Hill appears to have been pulled down.

The trail is still fun and scenic at this time, but who knows what it will be like in six more months.

Here's some pics.

Old chevy Hill and the rock fin are still untouched and still a thrill for the newbe coming down such a steep hill.

The long steep boulder hill is still there.

Once over the hill you can see the trail through Hackberry Creek has been graded. At this point we weren't sure if it was graded the whole way or not.

As you can see heavy equipment heading down the graded switchback.


This is the road heading to Devil's Canyon. The road going up to the left is the main thoroughfare for all the mining equipment and vehicles.

After our side trip to Devil's Canyon it was off to see the damage on the Hackberry Creek side. At least they didn't grade this small section of the creek that provided a little entertainment for us.

This was the rocky area right before the ledge. All blasted away and graded.

After lunch we headed to the Obstacle (McGuyver Hill). It appeared like somebody had dug around the boulder and dragged it off the hill, then stacked rocks around the boulder.

Anyway the obstacle is no longer an obstacle and we all walked right up with no problem at all.

We then headed up the boulder garden hill and worked our way out to 177.

Over all it is still a good trail but sad to see it changing so fast.

02-12-2012, 03:06 PM
Had a passenger in one of the Jeeps that ran this with us yesterday who said that we are soon to loose Hackberry Creek for off-roading altogether. He said that the mining company that has been doing all the core drilling in the area (and dozing all the trails) has been working with Congress to get a land exchange put through that will render all this country private property and closed to the public due to their mining activity if they get it done. It is supposed to have already cleared the committee in Congress and supposedly, Kyl and McCain are for it.