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  1. #1
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    Double Dose of Mount Ord

    On the way home from a hiking/camping trip in the White Mountains a couple of weeks ago, I passed by Mount Ord while driving back to The Valley on Hwy 87. I noticed there appeared to be an old road cutting its way up the North face of the mountain. I was immediately intrigued and through a little research (Mount Ord from Slate Creek TH, AZ), I developed a game plan.

    I'm kind of a big fan of climbing, so I figured it only seemed reasonable to bag the summit from the old Slate Creek approach as well as the newer FR 626 approach. Climbing the old road from Slate Creek was a blast; just enough loose and steep terrain to keep you on your toes for the majority of the climb. FR 626 was pretty gentle in comparison, but the break was appreciated.

    Upon my initial summit, the fire lookout granted me permission to climb the lookout tower where I was awarded with some pretty stellar views that a cheap Cannon PowerShot just can't capture.

    Interesting fact: The Mount Ord lookout tower was built in 1983 and stands 102' tall. It is the fourth tallest lookout tower in AZ currently in use.

    The final descent back down to Slate Creek was bomber. Now for some ride stats and a few photos...



    Mazatzal Peak in the distance


    The infamous Four Peaks in the distance


    Starting the grind back up FR 626 en route to the summit reppin' the mandatory AES jersey


    Nice cloud display over the Mazatzals on the final bomber descent to Slate Creek

  2. #2
    Ahhh the pain....
    Reputation: Raybum's Avatar
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    Nice... That one has been on my list for a while; just never close enough to the top to pull the trigger... Looks like some good suffering. Nice work!
    Your limits are both physical and mental. Suffering will help you find and overcome both.
    http://onegear-ray.blogspot.com/

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raybum View Post
    Nice... That one has been on my list for a while; just never close enough to the top to pull the trigger... Looks like some good suffering. Nice work!
    The approach from Slate Creek, albeit way more fun, would be rough on a SS since there are a few areas that are a bit on the loose and chunky side. I would say the FR 626 approach is pretty SS friendly. However, knowing you and your masochistic ways, I'm pretty sure you'd go with the Slate Creek approach...

  4. #4
    DFL>DNF>DNS
    Reputation: freeskier46's Avatar
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    Nice! You beat me to it!! I was eyeballing this as well the last time I passed by. How were the temps during the ride?
    Ski. Ride. Hike. Be.
    My Two Schillingsworth

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeskier46 View Post
    Nice! You beat me to it!! I was eyeballing this as well the last time I passed by. How were the temps during the ride?
    Temps were pretty good. I actually didn't decide that I would go for this until Saturday around noon. A bit last minute, but things ended up working out nicely. I was sweating my tail off on the way up from Slate Creek, but that was more effort induced than temperature induced. It was a tad warm when I started my way back up FR 626, but became pretty overcast and cooler as I continued to climb. It was definitely getting toasty on the way back down to Slate Creek, but the descent is a ripper so I didn't really notice it.

  6. #6
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    I've done that ride before. About 3 years ago. Real fun. The old road is FS 27. It was the original road before the 626. It joins the 626 about 2/3rds the way up. Is about 4 k vert from top to bottom. Really good training ride and like the OP stated, the decent is fun! I need to go back and do this again.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by freeskier46 View Post
    Nice! You beat me to it!! I was eyeballing this as well the last time I passed by. How were the temps during the ride?
    I was about to say the same thing. This was the road we talked about last time we drove down 87 right? I say let's do it! Can you wait until October though when I get back into town?

  8. #8
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    my kind of ride.... maybe not the double dose... (for now)... Ill have to try a single dose of this very soon...

    Thanks so much for sharing... sincerely... My Mt Union ride has gotten me in great shape, So I am ready for something more than 3000 feet of climbing.
    Below Par on the Gnar

  9. #9
    Give it a crank
    Reputation: Mtn-Rider's Avatar
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    Really cool, I had no idea it was a 4K climb from the north end, gotta do at least one dosage of this one.

  10. #10
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    Yeah, that's a great workout ride. Might be the closest highest point to the Valley, depending on where in the Valley you are.

    Give Four Peaks and the Bradshaws a go as well! Big honking climbs, great views, legs will hate you for days.

    p.
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  11. #11
    I love bike!
    Reputation: dsittman's Avatar
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    Anyone know if either of these roads are passable in a stock 4x4 pickup? I've eyeballed the road up (old FS 27 from the east side of the mountain I believe) a number of times while driving on hwy 87 and it looks pretty skeery. I don't know if I've ever noticed the 'newer' road to the north. The wife and kid and I like to go on easy-ish off-road excursions and thought this might be fun since it's so close. I don't like getting too crazy since I don't have that much off-road experience and plus the truck is my daily driver.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsittman View Post
    Anyone know if either of these roads are passable in a stock 4x4 pickup? I've eyeballed the road up (old FS 27 from the east side of the mountain I believe) a number of times while driving on hwy 87 and it looks pretty skeery. I don't know if I've ever noticed the 'newer' road to the north. The wife and kid and I like to go on easy-ish off-road excursions and thought this might be fun since it's so close. I don't like getting too crazy since I don't have that much off-road experience and plus the truck is my daily driver.
    You could probably drive a lowered Honda Del Sol up FR 626. On my final descent down FR 27, I saw a brand spankin' new bone stock Toyota Tacoma 4x4 descending it with little trouble which leads me to believe it is indeed possible. FR 27 is a bit narrow in spots where the trees close in on the road so if you cherish your paint job, you might want to pass. I think it would be much easier and likely safer to drive up FR 626 and descend down FR 27.

  13. #13
    I love bike!
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    Thx! I've got a late model Taco 4x so this is good info. Might just do a 626 out and back as I do somewhat cherish my paint job

  14. #14
    dirt visionary
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    I once took my old big suburban down FS27 . Hair raising experience and a one way ticket.I remember lots of deep ruts, skinny area meant only for jeeps or quads and a wooden bridge that the boards were loose and popped up while driving across .A few times fs27 tested the limits of my 4x4 and many times I had a wheel or two way off the ground. On a recent drive both fs 27 and 626 looked like they had work as even 626 was slow going until you got into the pines .
    Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of
    arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body.

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