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Oracle State Park Day Hike
February 4, 2012
by Wendy Rennert
  GPS Map 
23 Trailblazers help celebrate the re-opening of Oracle State Park.

With 15 people meeting at the carpool location in Phoenix and another 8 people meeting us at the trailhead, we had an impressive number of dedicated hikers getting up early on a weekend to help celebrate the grand re-opening of Oracle State Park. We parked at the Oak Woodland parking area, and started off on the Granite Overlook trail.

The park has a number of shorter trails, and we combined a few of them to form a loop hike — Granite Overlook to Windy Ridge to Nature Trail to Manzanita to Arizona Trail and finally the Wildlife Corridor Trail, ending at Kannally Ranch House.

Ajay, are you trying to sneak that stalk out in your backpack?

The Granite Overlook Trail contains the highest point in the park at 4,622', which offers great views of the surrounding area, including snowy Mt. Lemmon.

The granite boulder formations in this area remind us of those at Tom’s Thumb in the McDowell Mountains of north Scottsdale.

A perfect place to sit and relax for a bit.
Historic Kannally Ranch House in the distance.
Team Doug climbs up the boulder fields.
Nice to see the snow without having to drive in it!

Once we reach the junction with the Windy Ridge Trail, the boulders start to disappear, and we enter an amber grassland area.

Easy strolling through amber waves of grain.
A snack for Glenn at the Soap Tree Yuccas.

The trails were well marked, although there was one “No Trespassing” sign that seemed to be in the middle of the trail for no reason. Perhaps it was left over from when the park was closed for a couple of years due to budget cuts...

During one portion of the trail, we could hear what sounded like frogs croaking, but we couldn’t see any. Well, either that or one of the Trailblazers may have had indigestion, perhaps!

Helping to point the way, dazzling colorful cholla.
They all got the memo to dress in blue ; )
Lovely day for a picnic!
Anikó shows us the way to the Kannally House.
Hand-painted ceiling beams.
The original cottages, now used as ranger housing.
One of the many patios on the property.

After our hike, we had time to have a picnic lunch before taking a guided tour of the Kannally Ranch House, which is listed on the National Register of historic places.

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Arizona Trailblazers Hiking Club, Phoenix, Arizona
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updated April 22, 2020