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This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Middle Trail #202, AZ

Guide 45 Triplogs  1 Active Topic
  2.8 of 5 
no permit
1 Active
263 45 2
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Difficulty 1 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance One Way 0.55 miles
Trailhead Elevation 7,640 feet
Elevation Gain 50 feet
Accumulated Gain 88 feet
Avg Time One Way 0.5 hour
Kokopelli Seeds 0.84
Backpack Yes & Connecting
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10  2019-11-24
Sixshooter / Icehouse Canyon
20  2019-10-19
Pioneer Trail #196
15  2019-06-05
Pioneer Ferndell & Middle Trails
23  2018-11-09
Six Shooter - Pinal Peak - Telephone
25  2018-05-05
Pinal Signal Peak Loop
20  2017-10-28
Pinal Mountains 4X Super Loop
14  2017-10-14
Pinals 2x Wussy Loop
8  2016-10-17
Pioneer Trail #196
Page 1,  2,  3,  4
Author PrestonSands
author avatar Guides 169
Routes 148
Photos 5,615
Trips 1,492 map ( 7,560 miles )
Age 43 Male Gender
Location Oro Valley, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Sep, May, Jun, Aug → Any
Seasons   Early Spring to Late Autumn
Sun  5:14am - 7:35pm
Official Route
14 Alternative

in the middle of aspens
by PrestonSands

Likely In-Season!
The Middle Trail #202 is one of several short trails on the top of Pinal Peak. The Pipeline Trail #193, Middle Trail #202, and Ferndell Trail #204 serve as connectors between the three major trails that climb Pinal Peak itself. With elevations in the mid 7000's and a beautiful forest mix of pine, fir, and aspen, these trails, although short, offer a cool retreat in summer, and vivid color in the fall.

Use Middle Trail in conjunction with the Pipeline Trail, Ferndell Trail, and the various branches of forest road 651 to create a short, mountain top loop hike on Pinal Peak. Middle to late October would probably be an excellent time to see the aspens change color on this quick and easy hike.

From the trailhead on forest road 651C, the Middle Trail heads west into a dense fir forest on the northern slope of Pinal Peak. Encountered soon are a few exceptionally large aspens, as the trail leaves the road behind. Before long, the Middle Trail enters a pleasant grove of aspen, as it winds around the top of a little draw. Around 0.2 miles, the Middle Trail arrives at the upper end of the Sixshooter Canyon Trail #197, in the heart of the aspen grove. Past the Sixshooter junction, the Middle Trail turns northwest and begins a gentle ascent through the beautiful pine-fir forest. A knee-high, leafy, green groundcover carpets the forest floor along here, adding to the beauty of the area. At 0.35 miles, the Middle Trail arrives at the main branch of forest road 651. Cross the road here, and follow the trail west, as it heads up a short hill. The trail soon reaches a little saddle, then begins descending to the west, around a shallow drainage. The many cut logs along the path here are the result of a forest service tree thinning project. As the Middle Trail continues its gentle descent through the forest, occasional gaps in the trees yield glimpses of Signal Peak to the northwest. At 0.6 miles, the Middle Trail comes to an end, where it meets the Pipeline Trail #193 at a signed junction.

Return the way you came, or continue along on the more primitive Pipeline Trail.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2007-05-18 PrestonSands
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One-Way Notice
This hike is listed as One-Way.

When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

Permit $$

Map Drive
FR / Dirt Road / Gravel - Car Okay

To hike
For best results use this Upper Pinal Trailheads

At the junction of highways 60 & 188 in Claypool, turn right (south) onto Russell Road

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- South on Russell Road for 0.35 miles
- DO NOT continue on Golden Hill, Russell turns right
- Continue to 0.65 miles
- DO NOT continue on Rose Mofford Way, Russell turns left
- At 6.3 miles you reach FR 651

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- Turn right (south) on FR 651 ( dirt road )
- Continue to 10.25 mi with FR 651C junction

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- Left on FR 651C 0.6 miles

There will be a small parking spot on your right. There is a wooden sign for the Middle Trail just behind the vehicle barricade.
90+° 8am - 6pm kills
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