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Bunker Hill Spring Canyon, AZ

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Guide 3 Triplogs  1 Active Topic
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Sedona > Sedona NW
Rated
3
3 of 5 by 3
 
2
Canyons are inherently risky. Flash floods occur without notice on sunny days. Technical skills & surrounding topography knowledge required yet does not eliminate risk.
Canyoneering
Consensus
View 1
Grade3
WaterB
Risk
TimeIII
Statistics
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Difficulty 3.5 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance Loop 7.4 miles
Trailhead Elevation 6,535 feet
Elevation Gain -1,100 feet
Accumulated Gain 1,200 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 4-7 hrs
Kokopelli Seeds 13.4
Interest Off Trail Hiking, Seasonal Waterfall & Seasonal Creek
Backpack No
Dogs not allowed
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
23  2014-08-30 desert_boonie
6  2011-08-28 toddak
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   May, Jun, Sep, Oct → 8 AM
Seasons   Late Spring to Late Autumn
Sun  7:03am - 5:22pm
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Route Scout App
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Official Route
 
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Water
Nearby Area Water
Taylor Cabin Trail #35
Taylor Cabin Trail #35
0.4 mi away
2.9 mi
-1,761 ft
Secret Mountain Trail #109
Secret Mountain Trail #109
2.1 mi away
5.7 mi
1,118 ft
Ott Lake Trail #70B
2.5 mi away
0.2 mi
37 ft
Winter Cabin Canyon
Winter Cabin Canyon
2.6 mi away
10.7 mi
2,450 ft
Winter Cabin Trail #70
Winter Cabin Trail #70
2.6 mi away
5.5 mi
2,341 ft
Sycamore Basin Trail #63
Sycamore Basin Trail #63
2.9 mi away
11.2 mi
1,029 ft
Honanki Ruins
Honanki Ruins
3.5 mi away
0.5 mi
40 ft
Dutch Kid Tank Trail #54
3.7 mi away
1.7 mi
183 ft
Hang 'em High Canyon
3.8 mi away
2.5 mi
700 ft
Loy Canyon Trail #5
Loy Canyon Trail #5
3.8 mi away
5.3 mi
1,930 ft
[ View More! ]
Fauna Nearby
Sandstone Narrows, Mind Wanders
by nonot

Overview: A technical canyoneering trip into Mooney Canyon.

Warning: Canyoneering involves slot canyons, always check the weather before you leave and do not go if there is any chance of rain. Since this trip is technical, you will need a: Helmet!, harness, rappelling device and locking biner, 100 ft rope, 2 rap rings, and 20 ft webbing. Wetsuits are probably unnecessary.


You will want sun protection (hat and sunscreen) for the hike up Mooney Trail #12. Bring extra water for this shadeless ascent!

Along the way you will encounter a keeper pothole - it appeared very serious and was in keeper conditions on our inspection - it is recommended to bypass this obstacle on canyon right.

History: Described in Todd Martin's book: "Arizona: Technical Canyoneering".

Hike: From the parking spot, take FR626B east until the road ends. Downclimb into the canyon here, being careful of your footing as the pine needles are slippery. At the bottom it is a bit of a thrash for awhile until the canyon gets a little deeper. You will downclimb a 20 ft drop right away and soon come to a 15 ft rappel/downclimb. Thinking this was the only rappel described in the book (from above, downclimbing seems unlikely) we rappeled this and were able to stay dry. Continuing downcanyon, hop over logs and test yourself at a series of three tests - can you stay dry? After these tests of agility you will come to the mandatory rappel of about 25 ft into chest deep water. After this you can pack up your technical gear. As you continue downcanyon you will enter a very attractive length of sandstone narrows. The scenery is eye candy as the narrows twist and turn. Along the way you will downclimb and stem over many more pools. At one point the slot is choked by enormous vegetation piles.

A word of warning: You will encounter a formidable keeper pothole along the way. Upon inspection the water was 2 ft below the rim and it is reported to be at least 7 ft deep. A bypass trail exists on canyon right around this obstacle. If you are not prepared to face this formidable challenge - it is recommended you take the bypass!

Eventually the canyon will widen as it joins with Mooney canyon. Good elk trails soon appear and it is imperative that you find them. In one place in particular a very good elk trail will be on the west side of the canyon and proceed for at least a half mile bypassing high above the boulder cluttered canyon floor - allowing one to see the beauty without working as hard for it. Eventually Mooney will junction with the Mooney Trail #12. This proceeds close to a barbed wire fence and is a rather shadeless 1000 ft climb up broken-down sandstone ledges until it reaches Taylor Cabin TH. I recommend you bring sun protection (hat and sunscreen) as well as extra water for each person. Due to the exit, the canyon is likely much more pleasant in spring or fall than in summer.

Even though the canyon isn't very technical it has very nice narrows and the hike down Mooney is quite wonderful. The Mooney Trail #12 is a necessary evil but allows for an easy return to the rim.

Water Sources: Nothing that was appetizing.

Camping: Mooney Canyon had several campsites, but no water source was located. Camping on the rim is certainly possible in many places.

nonot
  • Sedona Trails 2018
    region related
    Sedona Trails 2018
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 $$
None


Directions
Map Drive
or
Road
High Clearance possible when dry

To canyon trip
From Flagstaff take Rte 66 west to Woody Mountain Rd. Turn left (south) on WMR and take it to FR538. Turn right at the junction onto FR538. Continue on FR538 and take it to FR538B. Turn right onto FR538B as it follows powerlines. Park at were FR538B reaches FR626B.
page created by nonot on Aug 28 2011 9:32 pm
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