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Weatherford Trail to Doyle Saddle
September 6, 2020
by Tom Simonick
Three Trailblazers. [photo by Li]
Kevin, Tom, Li

On a beautiful day in the San Francisco Peaks, three Club members hiked up the Weatherford Trail to the Doyle Saddle, and then continued to the junction with the Inner Basin Trail.

We began the hike in at the Schultz Tank trailhead with a temperature of 48°, the lowest starting temperature we had experienced in a long time. We set a brisk pace to warm up and shed our jackets by the time we reached the junction with the Kachina Trail.

There were few other hikers and runners on the trail, so we had long stretches by ourselves. The forest here is a mixture of pine and aspen, so as we climbed we had nice stretches of shade in which to cool off. Climbing higher, the trail is exposed, we got hotter and the shade was reduced to single trees.

Tom finds plenty of grass on the way up. [photo by Li]

Weatherford is a constant, moderate slope and we reached Doyle Saddle in 3.5 hours. After taking a break, we decided to continue hiking to the Inner Basin Trail junction a little over a mile away. This gave us nice views of the Inner Basin and the surrounding peaks.

Kevin [photo by Li]
Li [photo by Tom]
Rocks on the way up. [photo by Li]

Looking into the Basin, we could see the aspen were still green, just like they were on the way up, so no sign of fall yet.

Hiking across the slopes of Fremont Peak, we crossed four rock falls including a broad area fall, alternating with forest cover.

The trail crosses a rockfall below Fremont Peak. [photo by Tom]

We turned around at the trail junction, returning to Doyle Saddle and then continued down the trail to the trailhead. It took us a little over 8 hours to cover the 17 miles.

Made it to the trail junction. [photo by Tom]
A well-deserved lunch! [photo by Tom]
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Arizona Trailblazers Hiking Club, Phoenix, Arizona
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updated September 10, 2020