Hike Mount Elden Trail Part 3
This hike has about 4 phases: Phase 1 is at about the trailhead and goes up a couple of hundred feet. Phase 2 continues a little steeper and goes up about 600 hundred feet. Phase 3 goes up about 1,500 feet, and phase 4 goes up about 100 feet.
Phase 3 is comprised of steep switchbacks, and the view gets better as you go up this section especially, but the really nice views start at the beginning of phase 4, when you get to the trail sign just about 100 feet below the base of the lookout tower, where you can see Humphreys peak, the snow covered mountain to the northwest about 10 miles or so. If this phase of the trail doesn't get your lungs breathing and your heart pumping, nothing will.
Up on top, where the antenna farm and the lookout tower are located, you can see Flagstaff and points every direction except for north, with the view blocked by the San Francisco peaks to the north that are about 3,000 feet taller. Looking southeast, you can see Walnut Canyon (national monument), not far from where our condo it located on the edge of Coconino national forest.
If you're wearing boots with a shank in the sole, you'll be glad, because there are a lot of places where rocks point up in the trail that might bruise the bottom of your foot if you don't have a shank, or if you don't land on the ball of your foot, where you can take more stress.
On the way up phase 2, I noticed lots of flowering cacti along the trail. I also noticed a few lizards along the way.
On the way down about half way down phase 3 (about 8,400feet elevation) of this trail, I noticed a herd of about 10 deer running from south to north.
Bottom line: This was an excellent hike. Good views and good exercise.
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Last Update: May 13, 2015
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