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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.

Bug Hollow Trail #548, AZ

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Guide 25 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Prescott > Cottonwood
3.4 of 5 by 7
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance One Way 3.3 miles
Trailhead Elevation 6,856 feet
Elevation Gain -683 feet
Accumulated Gain 174 feet
Avg Time One Way 2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 3.88
Backpack Possible & Connecting
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Inaugural Calculation on Button Tap!
14  2019-09-14
Mingus Inner Basin
13  2019-09-14
Mingus North - Mint Julep Loop III
3  2017-04-13
Mingus the Butterfly & I
6  2017-04-13
Mingus the Butterfly & I
9  2016-05-29
Mingus the Butterfly & I
6  2015-08-09 winotron
4  2015-05-22
Mingus North Loop
10  2015-05-02
Mingus North - Inner Basin
Page 1,  2
Author PrestonSands
author avatar Guides 168
Routes 149
Photos 5,534
Trips 1,317 map ( 6,690 miles )
Age 42 Male Gender
Location Oro Valley, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   May, Sep, Oct, Aug → Any
Seasons   Early Spring to Late Autumn
Sun  6:13am - 6:33pm
Official Route
11 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Geology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
Mescal meanderer
by PrestonSands

Likely In-Season!
Conveniently located near the Mingus Summit on Highway 89A, The Bug Hollow Trail #548 is an old, closed road turned Forest Service trail that meanders along Mingus Mountain's forested slopes, eventually depositing one into Mescal Gulch. It can also be hiked in conjunction with its connecting trails: Mescal Trail #547, Upper Mescal Trail #550, Powerline Trail #549, and North Mingus Trail #105.

Hiking the Bug Hollow Trail from top to bottom is easier than from bottom to top, due to the lower end being unsigned and not as easy to follow.

From its upper trailhead along Highway 89A, the Bug Hollow Trail passes through a gate next to a trail #548 signpost, and heads north and downhill along a closed road into ponderosa pine forest. The trail levels off as it circles around a 6900 foot hill and soon crosses two lush drainages, the second one harboring a couple of small aspens, a rarity in these mountains.

Tall pines and gambel oaks tower above as the trail enters a third drainage, that of Mescal Gulch. The trail passes signed junctions with the Mescal Trail #547 at 1.25 miles, which heads down the creek bed of Mescal Gulch, and then, a few hundred feet later, passes the Upper Mescal Trail #550, which heads up the canyon.

Leaving Mescal Gulch, the Bug Hollow Trail contours north along drier slopes, where one can see Woodchute Mountain rising in the distance. At around mile 2 a signed junction with the Powerline Trail #549 is passed shortly before the Bug Hollow Trail arrives at a grassy meadow in a saddle, dominated by a large, lone juniper tree.

Upon entering the grassy meadow, the Bug Hollow Trail becomes a bit more primitive, and one needs to keep an eye out for cairns and flagging tape from this point on. The trail is really not difficult to follow it's just an abrupt change from the old road you have been hiking on up until this point. The trail descends the brushy eastern slope of hill 6772, where one can look down Mescal Gulch at the Verde Valley in the distance.

Clearing the 6772 foot hill, the trail descends its northeast ridge on loose limestone cobble and quickly arrives at an unexpected open, rocky, flat, camping area. Follow the cairns and flagging tape across the little flat to where the trail joins the route of a four wheel drive road. This road descends the hillside, curving west, and arrives at a road fork in a shallow ravine. Take the right fork, which heads downhill, and you will reach Forest Road 338 at the bottom of Mescal Gulch in 0.25 miles. The Bug Hollow Trail ends here, and is not marked as of this writing.

Heading east on Forest Road 338 will bring you to the North Mingus Trail #105, while heading west will bring you to the signed junction with the Mescal Trail #547 in 0.2 miles. Highway 89A is just a few hundred feet beyond that. The Mescal Trail makes a nice return hike option, shaving off a bit of distance and taking you through a shady canyon environment.

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.

2012-07-06 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.

Most recent of 18 deeper Triplog Reviews
Bug Hollow Trail #548
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Mingus North - Mint Julep Loop III
A good loop that few will try. Other Mingus loops rank higher. This one has plenty of character. I'd guess 40% or more is along or under tree cover. Most will leave with memories of pines. Gamble Oak has a solid presence for autumn foliage opportunity.

1 hour in we passed a rafter of turkey hens. Neither of us captured one for the annual 4-H county fair exhibit.

#550, #549 and west #503A offer pleasant hiking. Best-of destination slayers might ponder if options run low.

In addition to countless redos we have a reason to try and loop up Mingus. However, no trace on satellite. FR500E needs to be utilized in a Woodchute Loop too.
Bug Hollow Trail #548
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Mingus Inner Basin
A return to the Mingus area for cooler temps.
This hike features tall pines, decent trail and some off trail. A start in the 60's was perfect.

There was some smoke in the area in the AM, that dissipated in the afternoon.

Goal on this loop, was to try and find a way down from the dead end of the Powerline Trail. I'd seen on satellite, what appeared to be undocumented sections of a trail. Bingo, we found it and it was a much easier way down than the Ravine. Next time, I need to find where this goes up to? This is an old trail with great tread. I'd love to know the history of this one.

Now on the Mescal Gulch-Hull Canyon Trail, this one is fading away on the south side of the ridge. The steep north side of the ridge, has seen some recent and welcome love, all the way to Walnut Spring.

Out of the tree cover for the most part, we followed the old Jerome-Prescott Wagon Road, back to the TH.

A couple miles from the finish, some poor sole had lost a tire (not wheel) on his Silverado, and wound up 10' down/off the trail.

A good day for wildlife. 2 miles in, 3 deer with the buck still in velvet. 3 miles in, a dozen turkey lazily sauntered away from us. 12 miles in by Walnut Spring, a couple of Javelina.

The rain held off until the drive home.
Bug Hollow Trail #548
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Parked at the forest boundary pull off on 89A, and dropped into Meacal Gulch to follow the Mescal Trail on a cold and windy afternoon. Saw all of my familiar favorites, such as the ancient spring trough, the cave that isn’t, the wall of mystery, the Jerome wagon road ruts, and more. If only these hills could speak. Spooked a couple of deer as I turned onto the Bug Hollow Trail. Plenty of cat and bear sign along old Buggy. Just north of the junction with the Powerline Trail, the Bug Hollow Trail has seen a reroute and some fine trail work since my last hike on it in 2013. Thanks to whomever did that. Bug Hollow is first class now, and is even signed at its north end in Mescal Gulch. Great to hike in one of my favorite areas again, even with a nasty head cold. I do love me some Jerome hiking.
Bug Hollow Trail #548
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Hey, this was pretty cool. Pulled off the highway without really knowing what was there and just followed what was in front of us. There's an old rusted car that apparently rolled off the road decades ago right as you start. Nice mix of tall pines and shade in the trees on the way up Mescal, with some evidence of the logging/mining history of the area. Then a nice descent down Bug Hollow, warm but way better than the valley. Didn't see anybody else, just one other car at the trailhead, wasn't there when we got back.
Bug Hollow Trail #548
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Mingus the Butterfly & I
what do you do when life offers you robin eggs? hold your hand out...duh

i unexpectedly got thursday off so i checked the list of hikes i wanted to do and texted Count Tacula, consulted Gumdrop and next thing you know, we had a plan!

great hike in a totally new area to me. i'm sure this hike is awesome in summer and fall and hopefully i will see it during those times too, but i always enjoy spring in the mountains. everything is waking from it's winter slumber and there is such a different feel to it. the early views towards Sedona were cool and the Peaks with snow topping was an awesome sight as well

i enjoyed all the trails, though the final big climb up the Gaddes trails was probably my favorite. great weather and nice to hike with the boys again.
Bug Hollow Trail #548
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Mingus the Butterfly & I
Nick asked if I was interested in one of my favorite hikes. Almost like stopping along the road and asking a stranger if they would be interested in some robbin eggs... duh!

Road gates were locked so we started from the road to Potato Patch Campground. This worked out well as it was a chilly 52 degrees. This allowed us to knock out the low elevation stuff first, which is probably always prefered.

I'm a huge fan of Mingus and all the trails. That said, summer and autumn are best in my opinion. The dominate oaks and accent maples are still in winter mode. Despite being cooler we still felt toasty at times. Everything is relative, when it's 25 degrees warmer in the summer it's still seriously cooler than the Valley!

Pretty quiet on the mountain. Just one elder couple walking the roads up top. They may have got in the back road as that gate was open. Signs were out for fire control crews but we never encountered any. Did spot several new slash piles heading over to upper Coleman Trail #108. It's still brush free. Usually hit it in the beginning of the loop. Noticed after 11 miles on the legs it's a little rockier than memory served.

My fav Gaddes Canyon Two is a tad drab without leaves. Imagine it'll be nice and shady in a few weeks.

I'll probably hold off posting the one photo I took in all the breaks of the day. Nick and I did our best to hold back the hairy beast. Seriously, he needs to go to Mexico pronto to take care of the Kramer Shag!

The boys treated to dinner and somehow I got to pick. Decided to support local with Guido's Pizza in the bustling metro of Dewey AZ! Wiki reports a population of 3,894 in 2014. They were busier with take out than I would have expected for 4-5pm on a Thursday. It won't make any best of lists, hit the spot for hungry hikers!
Bug Hollow Trail #548
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Mingus the Butterfly & I
With ten minutes to figure out a hike I pulled this up in Route Scout. A personal favorite I designed for Autumn 2013.

Only crossed paths with 1 other hiker on Coleman. Near perfect weather on this fab figure eight loop.

Might be easier to take 89A down to Mescal than short cutting through the locust thickets. Not a scratch and the foxtails are currently friendly, just saying. A little trouble figuring out the trail on Bug Hollow Trail #548 near the 6,600 contour. Over half the ascent is in the last 5 miles. No biggie with the breeze. Took an early and late nap.

Did pass a family taking flowers up to the grave site Bruce visits when we pass the area. Believe they called it the the Indian grave.

carried 4 quarts, about 4 ounces unused

paintbrush, a sprig of lupine, a large field of unknown yellows and another of whites
Bug Hollow Trail #548
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Back to one of my favorite hikes with my fiance and my sister. My sister's first visit to Mingus. It was nice to be out hiking again after pretty much taking the whole summer off. Beautiful weather, with some light rain here and there throughout the hike.

We started from the Upper Mescal TH, took Bug Hollow, then Mescal and Bug Hollow back to the highway, and walked the highway for a few mins to complete the loop. Didn't see a single other hiker, as always. It always amazes me how empty these trails are, even on the weekends.
Bug Hollow Trail #548
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Mingus North Loop
We pretty much followed the route posted by Joe and the Eagle, with just slight changes. This is a great loop, although we did find ourselves on the wrong side of a No Trespassing area.

We did find the logo placed along the route so if there is a prize for that let me know how I collect it :D
Bug Hollow Trail #548
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Mingus North - Inner Basin
A redux of a hike we did almost 3 years ago. Going CCW this time made the off trail a much easier downhill. With the added bonus of finding a use trail to replace a thick bushwhack.

Old 503a extension > Mescal > Bug Hollow > Off Trail to Upper Mescal > Powerline > Off trail to North Mingus > FR > Old MTB trail > J-P Wagon Road

May the Weather stay like this the rest of the year, for this couple welterweights. It was perfect on the day. Clouds and brief very light sprinkles kept the temps down.

Bug Hollow and Upper Mescal are the highlights on the day for the thick tree cover. (Best viewed in the Autumn). The recently cleared Powerline trail does yield some big views to the north, past Sedona and to "The Peaks", Bill Williams, Sitgreaves and Kendrick.

Permit $$

Prescott Forest
Prescott National Forest Pass

Only trailheads with six "amenities" have fees. Amenities are picnic tables, trash, toilet, parking, interpretive signing and security.

Map Drive
Paved - Car Okay

To hike
From the junction of U.S. Highway 89 and U.S. Highway 89A just north of Prescott, drive east on U.S. Highway 89A toward Jerome approximately 18.8 miles to the Mingus Summit (the turnoff to Mingus Mountain and Woodchute Mountain). Continue on Highway 89A for another 0.9 miles to the trailhead on the right, located at mile 337.5. The trailhead is a small dirt parking lot/turnaround area next to the highway. Bug Hollow Trail #548 leaves the north side of the trailhead next to a #548 trail signpost, and follows a closed road downhill (see hike description).

From the Highway 89/Highway 89A junction just north of Prescott, head east on Highway 89A, towards Jerome, for 21.9 miles. At the bottom of Mescal Gulch (milepost 339.6), there is a pulloff and parking area on the left, near the Prescott National Forest sign. Forest Road 338, which is marked by a brown fiberglass signpost, starts on the right side of the highway here. Follow Forest Road 338 for 0.25 miles to the first road on the right (unsigned as of this writing). This is the beginning of Bug Hollow Trail #548.
page created by PrestonSands on Jul 06 2012 1:02 am
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