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11/21/2020: Back Way to Crown King, 4x4 Moderate-Difficult

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Posted (edited)

Saturday,November 21, 2020: Back Way to Crown King, 4x4 Moderate-Difficult


Join us for a little pre-Thanksgiving workout, burning off some calories ahead of the big feast! This is my 5th annual run up the mountain to CK, a trip made awesome with the fall/winter weather, changing of the leaves, and a good amount of flowing streams! In running the trail once a year, it's amazing to see how the trail changes in those 1 year snapshots. I've seen it in snow, sun, rain, and cloud - from mild and 60 to freezing and 30.


Nice video by @REDROCK TONIHAWK from our run in 2019:










Meeting Location: 

Alongside Castle Hot Springs Road here (MAP)

33°54'11.4"N 112°19'32.1"W

33.903277, -112.325595



Timing: 7:00am meet up

Air down and depart by 7:30am.

Sunrise is 7:06am for reference


Duration is approximately 6-8 hours. In 2019 we spent 5 hours in motion.





Trail Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult

This trail "changes" all of the time depending upon wear/weather. There are multiple (7) obstacles, all but 1 (to my knowledge) have a bypass.


My stock JL Rubicon ran the trail fine in 2018 and 2019 with a few rock rail hits, and a skid touch or two. Every year I get hung up on the ledge just outside of Oro Bell Mine. Odds are I'll still be on my stock suspension again this year, with the addition of a full skid plate system :)


Extensive trail information/description and map track downloads can be found here: https://www.trailsoffroad.com/trails/1411-backway-to-crown-king-arizona



Additional Considerations:

  • Dress for the weather (layers). It's 20-30 degrees cooler at the top (6,400ft)
  • Bring a chair!
  • Bring a lunch and plenty of water
  • Bring a camera!
  • Recovery gear/traction aid
  • Emergency supplies / Med kit




Vehicle Minimums:

  • All vehicles are required to meet state legal requirements, (i.e.: current registration and insurance)
  • Have functional seat-belts for each occupant
  • Must have suitable recovery points front and rear
  • Each vehicle must have a CB Radio or a Ham Radio in good working order
  • High-clearance 4x4's with low-range
  • 30"+ aggressive all-terrain or mud-terrain tires
Vehicle Recommendations:
Skid plates on important areas such as transfer-case & gas-tank, sliders/rock-rails, aftermarket differential covers, high-clearance metal bumpers, low axle gearing, upgraded axle shafts, 4:1 transfer case, 33"+ tires.
CB Channel: 4
Ham Frequency: 146.46 MHz




Rig Limit This trip is limited to 8 total rigs. Once the limit is reached, anyone asking to sign-up will be placed on the standby list. Please don't hesitate to sign-up as a standby because people often do drop-out so you may get to still go.


Post a reply in this thread saying you'd like to go and I'll put you on the roster!




1 - 4x4tographer (lead)

2 - @Eugene

3 - @theksmith

4 - 

5 - 

6 - 

7 - 

8 - 



1 - 

2 - 

3 - 


Edited by 4x4tographer
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Hi, Ryan. Please add me to the list. 



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Bumping the thread to see if there's any interest! I know it's still over a month out. 


Here's some more juicy photos from my annual trips over the years to entice you!








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since it's in my backyard - please add me!


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Keeping an eye on the Horse Fire and praying CK is spared. Looks like the Senator Highway is serving as the front lines.


This map is from the VIIRS infrared satellite layer on Gaia GPS and is updated twice daily. Compared to yesterday's snapshot, the fire has spread to the west and south.


As of 9am, 10/16:



As of 2pm, 10/16:






Edited by 4x4tographer
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