Surprise!! There is a peak here.
Sande J did the write-up of the Granite Mountain
trail 261 for HAZ and there are many excellent trip reports and photos there. This write-up adds a trip to the peak of Granite Mountain. You must use trail 261 to get there so read both write-ups to get the full picture.
Sun_Hiker and I made our annual visit to Prescott on 12/27/2006. Our intention was to do the usual easy hike taking the Granite Mountain trail to the viewpoint and return. That's not what we did (it was all her fault). You can turn this hike from an easy or moderate 8.2 miler to the viewpoint into a strenuous 11 miler that includes Granite Mountain peak (about 500 feet higher than the viewpoint). That is what we did.
The 24K topo
shows the easy hike in red and the route to the actual peak in blue.
On our way back from the viewpoint Sun_Hiker insisted that there must be a way to get to the true peak so we watched for signs of a trail off of the main trail. We found it. It is marked by a cairn and is reasonable easy to see if your looking for it. The use trail (not an official forest service trail) is easy to follow for the first 1/2 mile. Shortly after the start it is marked by many cairns that take you all the way to the peak. Muchos Gracias to whoever put the cairns there because I don't believe we would have made it without them.
The trail has some minor obstacles and requires a small amount of bushwhacking. The last half mile is slow going and involves a lot of non-technical rock climbing. We followed the cairns all the way. I think that if you can't find the next cairn you can safely assume that you are not on the trail.
At the top we found 3 Geodetic markers originally placed there about 100 years ago. There is also a sign in box hidden in the rocks opposite the peak indicated by the vertical stick
. We signed in 12/27/2006.
It was overcast all day and quite cold at the top. It snowed for most of our return trip from the peak. The San Franciscos are clearly visible from the peak and I have included a shot of them taken at 6X optical zoom
. There are 70 air miles between Granite and Humphrey peaks. - Dec 30 2006 gpsjoe