|when||Trip Report : May 3, 2014|
|Trip Report : November 16, 2013|
|where||Pine Mountain Wilderness Area|
This will be an exploratory hike in the Pine Mountain Wilderness area.
This hike is featured as the “Hike of the Month” in the
November, 2012 issue of Arizona Highways magazine. The trail
follows a lollipop configuration, starting out on the Nelson Trail first,
followed by the Pine Mountain Trail, the Verde Rim Trail, and the
Willow Spring Trail through the loop and then returning to the Nelson
Trail which takes us back to Salt Flat Trailhead.
From Salt Flat Trailhead, the Nelson Trail parallels Sycamore Creek for 2.7 miles to Willow Spring, crossing the creek several times. Just before the spring we make a right turn and continue southeast on the Nelson Trail as we begin to gain elevation and climb above the creek. After a half-mile we reach Cloverleaf Junction and the start of the Pine Mountain Trail. We make a left turn here and continue up the Pine Mountain Trail for 1.2 miles, gaining over 700 feet of elevation in the process, before linking up with the Verde Rim Trail. We make another left here and follow the Rim Trail north for about one mile.
But about a half-mile up the Rim Trail we will first take a short and steep spur trail to the very top of Pine Mountain (6,814 feet) and enjoy spectacular views of Verde River Canyon, the Mazatzal Range, and Horseshoe Lake. We will also stop here for a lunch and rest break. After going back down on the spur trail and linking up with the Verde Rim Trail again, the trail begins descending in a steep series of switchbacks. After another half-mile we make a left turn onto the Willow Spring Trail which we follow west for 1.6 miles to the junction with Willow Spring and the Nelson Trail that we started out on. From here it’s another 2.7 miles back to Salt Flat Trailhead.
• Sturdy hiking boots
• At least 3 liters of water
• Rain poncho
• Hat, sunblock, sunglasses
• Lunch or snacks
|distance||9.6 miles round trip|
|EC||+-1704' elevation change|
|elevations||5,110 feet at Salt Flat Trailhead to 6,814 feet at the top of Pine Mountain|
|on trail||100% – Nelson, Pine Mountain, Verde Rim Trail, and Willow Spring Trails|
|rating||"B" Rate yourself as a hiker.|
|cost||Sharing gas expenses with the driver.
The club also allows voluntary contributions of $5 per non-member.
|meet||7:00 AM in the Fry’s parking lot on the SW corner of I-17 & Bell Road. Park behind Denny’s, near the entrance to the Deer Valley Park & Ride. We will make carpooling arrangements here.|
|Schedule of Events||Arizona Trailblazers Home Page|
|updated September 10, 2016||© Copyright 2016, Arizona Trailblazers. All rights reserved.|