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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.

Fry Canyon - Coconino NF, AZ

no permit
24 2 0
Guide 2 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Flagstaff > Flagstaff SW
2.3 of 5 by 3
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance Round Trip 5.2 miles
Trailhead Elevation 6,525 feet
Elevation Gain 615 feet
Accumulated Gain 653 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 4-6 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 8.47
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
20  2012-10-20
Pumphouse Wash (Upper)
10  2011-09-05 skatchkins
14  2007-10-11 joebartels
Author joebartels
author avatar Guides 213
Routes 824
Photos 10,825
Trips 4,261 map ( 21,471 miles )
Age 49 Male Gender
Location Phoenix, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   May, Sep, Oct, Jun → NOON
Seasons   Spring to Autumn
Sun  6:14am - 6:25pm
Official Route
0 Alternative
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Maple Oasis
by joebartels

Likely In-Season!
Overview: Easy canyoneering in the upper-most origin of Oak Creek. It's 2.6 miles from 89A up through the canyon to an old forest road.

Hike: Here is a pleasant hike with maybe a ten day span through Autumn. Best hiked Oct 6th through the 18th. The hike of choice is up the canyon. Down the canyon isn't bad. It's just more of a forest walk in a very undefined canyon that meets up with FR237 in 0.8 miles. Which happens to be the upper end of Pumphouse Wash and a mere quarter mile from the confluence with Kelly Canyon.

Take off from the southeast corner of the bridge by a gate. Follow the defunct road for about 5 minutes then head right into the creek bed. The foliage is so dense you all but forget about the highway within minutes. You are greeted by a forest mixed with oaks. The oak is quickly chocked out by maples galore. There is no trail, simply follow the creek bed up. You will encounter minor bushwhacking, good news being it's lite, few and far between. Fallen trees are the extent of obstacles for this canyon. The creek is mostly one to five foot basalt rock with various low vegetation plants to vines.

The maples are dense alongside the dry creek. Combine that with subtle curves in the canyon and some afternoon light for nice photo ops. A half mile up canyon coconino bust out of the canyon wall on your left. After that you get limestone outcrops on a few occasions. One of which I climbed out of the canyon to get an overview, nothing exciting to note.

I didn't hike the full length of the canyon to the forest road. Turn around is arbitrary unless you're just committed to conquering the canyon. The canyon does appears to get tighter in the upper end. However, knowing I was in the limestone layer I figured anymore coconino was unlikely. The maples are abundant throughout and beautiful in season. Otherwise it's not a very exciting canyon as has been my experience with other small canyons nearby. Pleasant and entertaining once.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

Gate Policy: If a gate is closed upon arrival, leave it closed after you go through. If it is open, leave it open. Leaving a closed gate open may put cattle in danger. Closing an open gate may cut them off from water. Please be respectful, leave gates as found.

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

2007-10-11 joebartels
    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.

    Most recent Triplog Reviews
    Fry Canyon - Coconino NF
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Added a bit extra to this trip exploring further down the wash. Saw more fall colors following the wash to the south before heading back and hitting the actual trail in the description. Very interesting area as far as the rock formations at the beginning, and the small cave area. We found an owl hanging out in said cave, and he was nice enough to sit pretty while we snapped as many pics as we can get. It looked like we were about a day late on some of the fall colors, but south in fry canyon was very nice. All and all a great area to explore and I'll be back. Headed up to weatherford loop afterwards for a few more miles on the day. Another beautiful area as well, although we missed out on the aspens there. All the leaves were already down. Had lunch in a nice sunny spot, enjoyed the nice crisp thin air, and soaked it all in... Another perfect day in AZ.
    Fry Canyon - Coconino NF
    rating optionrating optionrating optionrating optionrated 1
    So you can hike this through the thorns or through the softer poison ivy. Totally up to you.

    I like to camp up at Fry Park or what I call Flagdona. Back to the trees, front to the field and mountain, mix it up if you get the feeling. This time around we brought some "Wait, where do go make bathroom?" church people up and Saturday they looked to me to lead a hike of some kind.

    Well I looked on my trusty interweb phone and found that HAZ Joe liked Fry Canyon and it's only about 1/2 mile from here.
    While we hike that way I can download the route then pull it up on Backcountry Navigator.
    "Can't we just drive instead."
    Um sure but we can only take one vehicle (my made up rules) so find a place for the 9 of you to sit or hang from.

    With everyone situated I drove taking all the bumps towards the TH and found why many of the roads were now closed up there. The forest site says for maintenance but it's really so 80% of the forest can be cut down. Sad and ugly.

    We began hiking from the top where it's all fieldsy and spacious and then stuck to a game trail from there. It got choked up pretty quickly with things that go poison and poke. Eventually I told the stragglers to turn around as I and a couple others that were keeping up just decided to climb right the up out.
    Once at the top we hiked though the forest turned field to the road and then back to the vehicle.
    At least we had more time to set up for a great sunset (only time I felt led to take pics, the others I stole).
    The next day I took some over to Hidden Cabin and then to a much better wide open hike down a drainage in Howard Pocket.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    Take the I-17 north almost to Flagstaff. Exit Powell Road which is the exit for the airport too. Take 89A down towards Sedona for maybe? 5-6 miles. Fry Canyon is between milepost 393 and 392. There is little room to park. I parked at the gate to the old road on the SE of the bridge. Beware it's soft gravel/dirt and I had to drop it in 4x4 to get out. I'm not listing this a 4x4 access if you're in a car there's a large pullout a quarter mile north of the canyon.
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