The Mountains of Arizona •
Maggie May Hill • Peak 4744 • New River Foothills
• Tonto National Forest
• Maricopa County

Maggie May Hill, Arizona
The highpoint is the one farther back, to the right.
Maggie May Hill, Arizona
Approaching the first hill.
Maggie May Hill, Arizona
Now looking over at the highest point.
Maggie May Hill, Arizona
Southwest view from the top, New River Mesa and parts of North Phoenix.
Maggie May Hill, Arizona
View north, Grapevine Mesa, and distant peaks whose names I do not know.
Maggie May Hill, Arizona
West view, I think New River Mountains HP is to the right.
Maggie May Hill, Arizona
South view, Quien Sabe Peak, and other peaks near Seven Springs.
Maggie May Hill, Arizona
Hiking back on the ridge now, looking east.
Maggie May Hill, Arizona
My vehicle is the little shiny thing down there.
Maggie May Hill, Arizona
Magazine Mesa's highpoint, and my car, so you see it wasn't that far a hike.
Maggie May Hill, Arizona
Maggie May Hill(s) as seen from Magazine Mesa.

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Date: March 6, 2020 • Elevation: 4,744 feet • Prominence: 424 feet • Distance: 2.5 miles • Time: 75 minutes • Gain: 560 feet • Conditions: High clouds, intermittent sun and very breezy


This hill, known usually as Peak 4744, lies north of the Seven Springs Recreation Area, in the Tonto National Forest. I was up here again hiking peaks, having just been here ten days ago, hiking Willow Spring Mountain, about five miles to the east.

Today's agenda was to hike this hill, plus Cramm Mountain to the south. Both are short and together would amount to a good half day's effort. I wanted to explore some of the side roads off of Forest Road 24, for future trips to the area.

I left home at 6 a.m., but it was warm, in the low 70s. Yesterday, we had reached into the mid 80s. The heat is slowly returning, which means these desert and mid-elevation peaks will soon be shut out for a few months. I took the usual route and in an hour, was in the hills on FR-24, the sun now up and a little cooler, given I was about a couple thousand feet higher in elevation.

I drove to the FR-41 junction, about four miles north of the Seven Springs campgrounds and trailheads. Peak 4744 was visible to the west, a two-humped hill covered in grass and spotty trees. Forest Road 41 is called the Big Maggie May OHV Trail, presumably popular with the 4-wheel drive people.

I was able to drive in almost a mile, which was about a mile more than I was expecting. I wanted to get as far as a saddle north of the peak, and assumed I would have to park early and walk much of the road. But the road was in great shape. It was narrow, but smooth and mostly free of rocks and ruts. I eased past one small stretch of rocks and erosion ruts and parked when the first opportunity arose. I was at 4,180 feet elevation, just a quarter-mile from the saddle, probably less.

I started walking at 7:45 a.m.. The sky was cloudy here, just high clouds, but the sun always seemed to be behind one, so I had muted lighting. The temperature was in the 50s by now, and there was a strong breeze. I walked FR-21 to the saddle. Had I really been motivated, I could have got my Subaru up here. The road was a tad rutted by now, but still a decent road.

At the saddle, I found a lesser track to the left (south), and could see a track high up on the closer hill (spot elevation 4,663 feet). I was not expecting any tracks, so having one to follow would be nice.

The track was steep and rubbly but easy to walk. It went up one small hill, dropped about 30 feet, then steeply uphill, aiming for the first big hill, the 4,663-footer. The track slowly lost distinction. It essentially disappeared in the grass just below this first hill.

The terrain was open and the slopes covered in low grass. There was a path now, somewhat weak but definitely a path. I followed it, and when I lost it, would simply follow common sense. There was no navigation challenges whatsoever.

I "summitted" Hill 4663, then dropped 80 feet to another saddle, then about 120 feet up again to the main summit. I found a tiny register within a cairn, signing in. It was placed there in 2009 and I was the 4th "group" to sign in. I am certain many more people come here, though. The path was too distinct, and this is a popular camping and shooting area.

I snapped images of the surrounding peaks and mesas, but did not stop to sit. The breeze was strong and consistent, and cold. I basically turned right around and walked down the way I came. I was back to my car a little over an hour after starting. This peak had gone well, although I was not expecting any trouble. Being able to drive in as far as I did probably saved me a half-hour of road walking.

On the drive out, I stopped south of the presumed highpoint of Magazine Mesa, which lies just off the road. This bump has about 160 feet of prominence. I parked and strolled to the top, crossing a fence along the way. The hike covered just a few hundred yards and about 40 feet of gain. It offered good views of the surrounding peaks and canyons.

Now, I drove south to hike Cramm Mountain. I had a map that showed a forest road, FR-468, that goes near the peak from the northeast. However, by now these side roads were being taken over by shooters. I played it safe and explored the Cave Creek Trail (Trail 4), near the CCC Campground at Seven Springs.

I parked and started walking, following Trail 4 about a mile and a half west, getting as far as the old Ashdale Ranger Station complex. There are no more buildings here, just concrete foundations. I decided to bail from this hike. It was getting a little warmer now, and I'd be bush-whacking some of the segments, which is not a good idea when warm. I still think FR-468 is viable and will go back at some point in the future.

On the hike out, I hiked all the way back to the main road, FR-24. This road has two concrete fords where the creeks flow over. On the "high" side, there is a concrete curb weir, where the water skims over the top, so I thought I'd be clever and walk that, figuring it would be drier that way. Well, I stepped on a patch of soggy moss and slipped, falling into the water, which was about 6 inches deep here. I was completely soaked. Fortunately, the electronics stayed dry. I was just a few feet from my car, so I changed into dry clothes and drove out.

By the time I was back in the city, the temperature was into the 80s. This is the time of year when mornings can be cool but the days warm. In a few weeks, the burners will be turned onto "high" and we'll be yearning for those cool days in the 80s.

When researching this peak, I found a few references to the Big Maggie May OHV Trail, plus some feature names from the mindat and geonames websites. There are two branches of the Maggie May Creek on the hill's east slopes. That's the name I use here ().

(c) 2020 Scott Surgent. For entertainment purposes only. This report is not meant to replace maps, compass, gps and other common sense hiking/navigation items. Neither I nor the webhost can be held responsible for unfortunate situations that may arise based on these trip reports. Conditions (physical and legal) change over time! Some of these hikes are major mountaineering or backpacking endeavors that require skill, proper gear, proper fitness and general experience.