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Hike #19 – Corral on 187 by Country Club Trail to 633

Location: From the Pinetop Post Office on SR 260, drive east on 260 for 2.2 miles and turn left at the traffic light onto Buck Springs Road. Drive 0.5 miles on Buck Springs and turn left on Ski Hi Road. Drive 1.0 mile on Ski Hi Road and turn left into the parking lot for Trail 633. Park one car here out of the way. Continue with the second car on Ski Hi Road for one more mile and turn right and immediately left on to FR 187 (signed 185). This is the trailhead for the Country Club Trail 632. Drive 1.3 miles on this rough dirt road until you see a corral on the left. Park next to the corral.

Trail: The trail is dirt with loose rocks part of the way and a dirt logging road part of the way.

Trailhead and Directions: The trail is marked with blue diamonds. Find the trail on the north side of the road only 25 feet west of the corral fencing. Walk this trail north only a short distance and find several signs indicating the junction leading left (west) to the 632 trailhead. Follow this portion of the Country Club Trail #632 for about 0.7 miles across 187 and along a berm with a shallow ditch on the left until you come to a major logging road. There are signs showing that the Country Club trail continues west to the trailhead and the Iron Horse Connector that turns left to reach the Springs Trail #633 trailhead. Turn left and follow the Iron Horse trail that has blue diamonds with a green washer on one nail. Walk south for about 0.4 miles where the road forks. Take the right fork that runs west and walk 0.6 miles. The road bends south and in about 50 yards the trail leaves the road on the right. Follow this narrow trail to the gate, cross Ski Hi Road, and walk 50 yards to the left back to your first car at the Springs trailhead parking lot.

Access: Hikers, bicycles, and horses. No motorized vehicles on the first and last sections of the trail. The logging road is accessible by cars or four wheelers but we have only seen either here once. Not handicapped accessible. It is not recommended to walk this trail after a rain as the dirt trail is composed of volcanic clay that sticks to your shoes like glue.

Distance: This hike is about 2.1 miles.

Difficulty: Easy, level, loose rocks and part of the trail is rutted from frequent use.

Features: The first section of the trail from the corral to the logging road is open with lots of dead and down pine trees. Flowers can be good in the damp areas along the south edge of the trail. The usual pine forest birds can be found here. The logging road portion of the trail borders a recently very severely thinned Ponderosa Pine forest on the west side. This open area should bring flowers including Wild Iris, New Mexico Groundsel, Mullein, and many other species as the area recovers. Grace’s and Yellow-rumped Warblers, Western Bluebirds, jays, chickadees, nuthatches, and some woodpeckers should be here. Elk, Mule Deer, Black Bear, Coyotes, and even Pronghorn could be seen but are rare.

Connections: Chipmunk Connector to the Los Burros Trail #631 in 7 miles, Country Club Trail #632, and Springs Trail #633.

Corral on 187 by Country Club Trail to 633
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