Into the Canyon: Backpacking West Clear Creek, Rio Verde, AZ. – Overthrow Clothing

Into the Canyon: Backpacking West Clear Creek, Rio Verde, AZ.

photos: Rachel Cary, Andrew Howell and Danny Milligan

Roughly 1,800 vertical feet, red rocks, prickly pear patches and at least two rattlesnakes. That is what you can expect along the 2.5 mile descent into the isolated canyon of the Coconino Forest where Willow and Clover creeks combine to form West Clear Creek. Make the trek down and you will be rewarded with (hopefully) one of the handful of camp sites and access to roughly 20 isolated swimming pools.

Our second trip to West Clear took place early April with moderate cloud coverage and temperatures in the 30-70 degree range. Armed with our packs, two cameras and Oaty the pup, we spent the weekend exploring the canyon's stretch of pools, fishing, and stretching out under the occasional sunshine. 

Gear List:

  • Nemo obi2p tent
  • Jetboil Sol
  • REI Flash sleeping pads (his and hers)
  • Kelty Lightyear sleeping bag
  • REI Womens Flash sleeping bag
  • Black Diamond Storm headlamps
  • MSR Miniworks water filter
  • REI Women's Flash 60 backpack
  • Kelty Lakota 65 backpack
  • Tenkara Sato fly fishing rod
  • Sony a7ii
  • extra Mountain House pad thai
  • Bulleit straight bourbon - we recommend heating over the fire with lemon if you're feeling fancy

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