18 hours ago

We started at the lowest part of the trail by Coomey's Tomb. The trail in July was a mix of sun and shade, but the trail follows a creek and the water is refreshing. Members of our party: 9 year old boy new to hiking, two dogs and two adults. There is plenty of wildlife along the trail-birds, butterflies, bees, squirrels, lizards, fish in the creek, and one small black and yellow striped water snake. Look for evidence of the old mine activity are evident-old iron stakes, timber and holes in the sides of the canyon. Bring water, but the mix of shade and sun makes a July hike pleasant.

Amazing hike. 15 is still closed due to fires. First 2.5 is slight uphill, kind of boring. At 3.5 you enter the slot canyon and then the first river crossing just past mile 4. So many landscapes, beautiful area. And the hot springs were awesome. Plenty of camping spots along the way

Great trail however it did not take 13.5 miles as stated. We began our hike through TJ Corral and going and coming back it was 18 miles!! My friend and I are avid hikers however my brother came with us and it was his 1st time he definitely got overwhelmed. The only trails we saw to start was Middle fork or TJ Corral( this seemed the shortest) definitely a trail to backpack and continue the hike the following day. We crossed through water about 8-10 times.

Super awesome!! Tons of fat tadpoles in the river and plenty of other wildlife.

This is Our go to hike/camp in the Gila during May and June. Depending on crowds we camp at Middle Fork or at the Springs. For example, Memorial Day weekend we stayed at the Middle Fork and made a day hike to the Springs because it was over run. We have found getting on the trail an hour earlier than we think we should gets us through the hellacious first two blazing miles and then it’s a cake walk after that. Our favorite pastime is exploring to find diving rocks and swimming holes and then soaking in the springs. We love the interesting and cool characters we always meet in the Springs (usually in their birthday suits). By July the water is so low, the sun is too hot, and the insects are to pesky.

13 days ago

A few ways to access the Frisco Box. We accessed it through FR 35 to trailhead 124. It was a 3.5 mile technical trail and elusive trail (thank heavens for the cairns). It opened into a beautiful meadow, buggy, but right off a postcard. Plenty of seclusion. Plenty of wildlife- wild turkeys, grazing cattle, birds of prey, snakes, and a friendly black bear. The river was low and warm. The hot springs were disappointing but the Frisco Box was a gem. Next time, we will bring bug spray and opt for the easier route in. We will be back for the box and the wildlife.

17 days ago

We hiked the Mineral Creek trail for approximately two miles until we reached the Cooney mining area and the returned. The trail is clear and there are numerous water crossings. However, we were able to make all of the crossings without getting our boots real wet. It’s not abundantly clear when you reach the Cooney mining area. When you reach a few small dilapidated buildings and see a old smoker fire area to the right of the trail, you’ll know you are there. The old mining stuff is on the south slope and you have to poke area a bit to see it. Overall, this is one of my favorite hikes in the Gila. The creek is amazing and there is quite a bit of shade along the way. Also, the grade is very gentle the whole way. Lots of amazing views!

18 days ago

Put this trail on your bucket list! I completed the Gila loop trail on a one night, two day backpacking trip (6/19-6/20). The loop trail ended up being about 24 miles long. The first 8-9 miles were 90F the whole time. I recommend you bring plenty of water. I brought 3L and ran out before I hit the switchbacks down to the canyon. Lots of river crossings but it was nice to enjoy a little relief from the summer heat. I saw a couple of rattle snakes and a garter snake in the canyon between miles 12-14. They won't bother you if you are careful and leave them alone. The Jordan Hot Springs are a good place to stop, soak and have lunch. Don't forget to look up at all the birds nesting on the canyon walls. Overall a great trip!

Great trail. Be advised, the good fire is just south of the trailhead and the tadpole fire is a a bit further south from there. Look up air quality and fire containment before heading out as it may affect plans. As recently as yesterday the air quality was very poor and the route in changed as the 15 was closed, hopefully that will change.

20 days ago

We did 2 nights, started the first day about 6 pm upon arriving to the trailhead where we were greeted by buddy-buddy orioles and ravens. We ran into a juvenile rattlesnake about 1.5 miles in on the trail taking a siesta. We crossed one creek to the first peak (~7400 ft) at mile 5. The next day we did the grunt of the hike passing through the river about 50 times. We were greeted by the newly stocked trout and bullfrog tadpoles. My girlfriend brought Tevas and hiked in those. We also stumbled upon the hot springs along the trail by the river. The warm water in the river is the giveaway! The second night, coming out of Big Bear Canyon we camped at 7400 ft with a BEAUTIFUL view of all the mesas, rock faces and mountains. It was one of the best views either of us had ever camped at. The next morning we hiked the last few miles in adding a couple extra miles to avoid the road that you walk on into the trailhead. Truly wonderful! The hike ended up being probably 25 miles.

22 days ago

Absolutely incredible!

I hike and camp here often. Recently, the trail has been VERY busy, and campers backpacking in are not cleaning up after themselves, nor burying their human waste. Please, please, consider heading into other places in the Gila Wilderness or if you plan to go to Jordan Hot Springs, respect it and protect it. And enjoy..this special place. Check out this map for other places to hike..https://caltopo.com/m/K7DQ and our webpage..http://heartofthegila.org/trail-info/

The first part of the hike has spectacular views of the mesas then dropping into a small canyon after that the next 3-4 miles involve some water crossings, lost count after 14. Be prepared for proper foot attire.

Great trail that was easy to follow. Lots of shade on the trail with plenty of places to stop at.

26 days ago

Great backpacking trip! We're extended and followed the Middle Fork all the way out, bringing the loop to 28.9 miles. We did it as a family of six (plus family dog) and the kids counted a total of 97 river crossings. All river crossings were were below my knee and very manageable. We camped 5 nights and did the loop clockwise, which worked out well. Trekking poles were extremely useful during all the river crossings. I would reccomend something more substantial than sandals for the numerous river crossings.

29 days ago

Gorgeous trail, did 3 days 2 nights backpacking, clockwise. No water until you get to the Gila River in the meadow so be prepared.

Interesting trail with many changes in landscape. Plenty of places to camp along the final 2 miles although I recommend going past the springs and camping in the sand. The river crossings are tame and relieving. The springs are a perfect temperature for late-day or morning soaking. Also, if you’re coming from Albuquerque, I suggest filling up your car in T or C. There are no gas stations after getting off I-25.

Great trail. First couple miles offer little to no shade! The Canyon is a nice treat before getting to the review. Water was below the knee for all crossings when we went. Hot spring is beautiful! Forgot to turn off my recording so it leads back to camp.

bridge out
over grown
washed out
1 month ago

Real shame that the trail is destroyed. We took gold dust trail to by pass the washed out catwalk and have a place to leave our car over night for our backpacking trip. The trail is marked with pink ribbons for ease of navigation. We got to the fork and the continuation of white water was completely washed out. Even with GPS we didn’t find the trail. We decided to go down the left fork, after about a half mile a whole portion of the trail was completely destroyed leaving a near 15ft 90 degree climb to reach the next portion of the trail. We doubled back to the fork and found a decent camp site. Whoever left that massive fire pit is a complete moron, but the camping spot was the least rocky of the trail and flat. If you do plan on doing the full 18 miles bring climbing equipment.

6/2/2020 - Park your car at TJ Corral lot. This was a beautiful hike that was closer to 16 miles (approx 3 hours each way). The hot spring is perfect, and not too hot after a long hike. There are approx 12 river crossing and none of them have water above your knee. I did this in one day, but I would recommend camping overnight if you have the time.

Anyone know what the temperature at night is? Wondering what kind of bedding to bring..

1 month ago

Hiked the trail clockwise. Trail was well marked and easy to follow. Plan a minimum of 3 days 2 nights to enjoy the hike. We found the total distance to be closer to 24 miles. Going clockwise there is only water for the first couple miles along the west fork then it is dry until you descend back down into the middle fork at about 10 miles. There is a nice camping area near the top at around 8-9 miles in but it was dry. However we saw some creek beds that we were told had water a couple weeks earlier. If there was water or if we had enough, we might have preferred camping near the lookout at the top just before the switchbacks down. The view is insane. There are sites at the bottom. A couple were really nice but occupied. The area we set up was basically a lot of tall grass and horse poop. Not too bad. Actually the ground is a bit softer here so that was nice. Hike from here to the hot springs was about 7 miles. Good sites nearby. We kinda wished we had time to stay another night here. Last leg another 7 miles. About 60 river crossings total. Water was rarely above the knees but remember it had been very dry in the weeks prior so levels were down. Hiking poles are necessary especially if water is any higher. The rocks are slippery and the poles help you a lot. We wore merrell water hiking sandals first couple miles then dry shoes for the long climb. Water hiking sandals the second and third day and changed to dry shoes at little bear canyon. I recommend wearing socks with your sandals. amazing hike but it is challenging. We were glad we went clockwise and got the really long and hard part out of the way to enjoy the other two days at a slower pace.

I really loved this hike! First time really exploring in the area. Highly recommend. Easyish backpacking for beginners, which we had a few in the group I was in. The first 4 miles of the trail is the hardest, since there’s not a ton of shade or any water. Our pups got a bit hot the first leg, so I would make sure you pack some water for them or go earlier in the hotter months. There were so many river crossings the last 3 miles to the Hotsprings! Which I absolutely enjoyed, BUT I wished I had brought my chaco sandals! Definitely bring extra shoes since you’ll for sure get your hiking boots soaking wet. Overall, gorgeous scenery. Very lush. This was a great getaway from the heat and felt lovely to be by the water.

The first part of the trail offers no shade- about an hour/hour and a half. The next hour you head downhill towards the canyon. In the canyon it’s very shaded and very interesting! But keep going because beyond that is a beautiful stream & canyon. We made this our stop because of a friends I injury. We were told that after you crossed the water, it was about about hour after to the hot spring. It’s a great hike. Long and not too uphill/downhill. Well marked too.

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