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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.

Gold Hill - Navajo Nation, AZ

11 1 0
Guide 1 Triplog  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Northeast > Hotevilla
3 of 5 by 1
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Round Trip 1.1 miles
Trailhead Elevation 5,648 feet
Elevation Gain 516 feet
Accumulated Gain 564 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 1 hour
Kokopelli Seeds 3.92
Interest Off Trail Hiking & Peak
Backpack No
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
11  2012-10-05 chumley
Author chumley
author avatar Guides 75
Routes 667
Photos 13,172
Trips 1,417 map ( 10,542 miles )
Age 46 Male Gender
Location Tempe, AZ
Associated Areas
list map done
Navajo Nation Reservation
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Reservation Navajo Nation
Preferred   Jul, Jun, Aug, Sep → 5 PM
Seasons   ALL
Sun  6:14am - 6:26pm
Official Route
0 Alternative
Geology Nearby
The gold surrounded by a rainbow of color
by chumley

Likely In-Season!
You would have to be here for another reason, because this is not a destination most people would consider worth the effort required to get to. It's a prominent hill in the middle of a vast plateau and offers expansive views in all directions. Desert View and Cedar Mountain to the southwest; Comanche Point to the west; Cape Solitude, Chuar Butte and the North Rim to the north; and the Little Colorado River Gorge from the northeast to southeast.

This is deep in the Navajo Nation and the roads are unmaintained and rough. Gold Hill is just a couple of miles from the "trailhead" for the route down to Blue Spring in the LCR, and the farthest you can get via vehicle out toward Cape Solitude. So if either of those are your destination, Gold Hill makes a nice side hike.

The easiest, and most used access begins on the eastern slope, and climbs easily up to a small saddle. The terrain is scree in places, and the larger rocks are often loose and move under your feet. From the saddle to the summit, the grade increases, and doing some switchbacks helps make the ascent easier.

Most of the top of the mountain features a rocky ledge of 20-30 feet, inaccessible without climbing. But on this eastern approach, the ledge is broken with fallen boulders that offer several easy routes to the top.

The mountain is flat-topped and offers an opportunity to walk the circumference to see all the views. To the south you can spy the long double-track road you drove in on as well as a lonely Navajo Hogan on the plains.

Take in the views (binoculars would be a great accessory), take a break and have a snack, and head back down the way you came!

Check out the Official Route and Triplog.

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

2012-10-09 chumley
    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 Review
    Gold Hill - Navajo Nation
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Got to the NPS boundary by late afternoon and set up camp, planning to meet up with a group of HAZers on their way to Cape Solitude Saturday morning. With a couple of hours of daylight left, I didn't have time to drop into the LCR at Blue Springs as I had hoped to do, so I decided to bag this small, but prominent peak. It was a relatively easy climb, with some loose footing and sharp shale. Otherwise very uneventful. The sunny day had turned gray, which was a little bit of a bummer. There were a few cairns at the high point, but I didn't find any kind of a peak register. There were signs that people climbed via the route I had taken, but I can't imagine this peak gets more than a handful of visitors each year.

    I decided to descend so I could get back to camp before dark. These roads are not in the kind of shape you would want to be driving in the dark. Sure enough, when I got to the bottom, a sliver of sun shone though and illuminated the walls of the LCR in brilliant sunset light. If only that had happened when I was still on top of the mountain! Oh well!

    Permit $$
    Navajo Recreation Permit $5 per person per day, camping $5 per person per day. Study the Permit Details

    Navajo Nation Reservation
    Navajo Permits & Services

    Map Drive
    Strictly 4x4

    To hike
    From Flagstaff or Page, take Highway 89 to Cameron. Stop at Cameron and get your Navajo recreation permit ($5/day, extra if you camp). Take Highway 64 toward the Grand Canyon. After 24.5 miles, turn right onto Forest Road 64A (or FR2820) Follow the most traveled road (the numbers change) and ignore the turnoffs. Head east until you hit the switchbacks and drop down a ridge onto the open plateau above the LCR Gorge. You will cross the reservation boundary and if you look close you might notice it, but there's no sign, gate, fence, etc. From there the road is Indian Route 6150, but it doesn't matter since there's no sign that says that! You can't miss Gold Hill when you get there after a good 2-1/2 hour drive on dirt road. (approx. 21 miles.)
    page created by chumley on Oct 09 2012 12:36 pm
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