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Adventures with Land Shark

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Yesterday I took my Outback out with my mom and her boyfriend to show them some of the local forest roads. The car did extremely well off-roading.


First adventure spot:


Mt. Union Lookout Tower - Elevation 7979.


Tallest mountain and highest point in Yavapai County, AZ.


I was able to drive up to the access gate, which is about 0.4 miles from the Summit. The road from Prescott to Groom Creek is a paved 2 lane road. After the summer camps on Senator Hwy, the road turns into a partially maintained dirt road. From Senator Hwy, you follow Forest Road 261/Poland Junction Rd 1.5 miles to the gate. The road is not maintained and features narrow trails and mild grades with rocky terrain.


Parked at the access road:


Hiked the rest of the way to the summit:



The Forest Ranger allowed us to climb up into the tower and snap a few photos and learn about what he does.



We learned about another lookout tower that wasn't too far from where we were, so we decided to venture out there.


Second Adventure Spot:


Spruce Mountain Lookout Tower - Elevation 7693


To reach this spot, take Senator Hwy to Spruce Mountain Road to the lookout tower. Spruce Mountain Rd varies in grade from mild to steep. This is definitely not a road for a two wheel drive vehicle. The grade is mild until after you pass a few residential houses and an old exploratory mining claim. From there, the grade goes from 7-8% to almost 15-20% with very rocky terrain.


The Subaru did very well on these steep grades, climbing in second gear most of the way up.


Here he is at the top. I parked on the side of the road. Climbed an embankment to get this shot. Front bumper scraped a little when backing out, but totally worth it and tripped my mom out that my Outback could climb up there:


Here is some of the views and points of interest:




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