Ripsey PLUS

Total Miles
30.4

Elevation

1020.61 ft

Duration

Hours

Technical Rating

5

Moderate

Best Time

Summer, Fall

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Trail Overview

This GREAT TRIP is easy enough to run in either direction but will be described here beginning at the Ripsey Wash entrance. The west entrance is shorter if you are coming from that way. Ripsey Wash is a mostly sandy wash, beginning wide and then narrowing down to interesting canyons as you travel up its length. The Desert Willow Tree was in bloom when we did this trip in May. We also saw two Gila monsters the same day. Ripsey Mine has an unusual amount of equipment still in place. Please do not disturb any of it. The first photo at the top of this page shows an overview of the mill remains. We believe the first photo below is the base of an arrastra. The second may be a crusher.Drive to the end of the road and find a horizontal mine shaft. Rail lines are still in place, and there is a spot where they cross over a vertical shaft to a lower level. A small ore bucket on rails took ore from the lower level and dumped it into large ore cars to be taken out of the mine for processing.You'll go down a beautiful, narrow canyon to the top of Hackberry Dam. Be careful you do not drive off the top of it - there is no warning sign here. Now you can choose how to end the day. You can go back the way you came, or you can go down Hackberry wash and ford the Gila at Kearny. We did the ford when the river flow was 280 fps and had no problems. Would probably try it at 350 fps.

Difficulty

Intermediate

Technical Rating

5