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Coconino National Forest
Stage 1 Fire Restrictions Aug 14th to TBD
I can't imagine a better hike in the area just south of Sedona. This has spectacular red rock views to the west and white/red rock views to the east as it leads you through some pristine areas of Pinyon pine, juniper and cypress. Slick rock areas are prominent throughout this hike, which just add to the overall beauty of the area.
The trailhead is easily accessible at the end of Morgan Road. There is one 0.25 area of dirt/Jeep road that I did easily in my little Ford Focus. There is plenty of parking but a Red Rock Pass is required. The trailhead is located just across the jeep road and it is easily accessed, wide and well marked. The slickrock areas are very well marked by cairns. I left the TH at 9:30 AM on a gorgeous October morning with no clouds in the sky. As you leave the trailhead, you already have visions of what to expect , the white & red limestone formations of Mund's Mountain Wilderness to your east and the red rocks of Battlement Mesa & Twin Buttes to your west. The trail was wide and easy to follow through Pinyon pines & cypress and basically followed the terrain. There is supposed to be a trail to the saddle on Battlement Mesa but I couldn't find it so I continued on the defined trail, which gently followed the terrain. After about .75 miles you'll come to a steeper descent and see an area marked off by barbed wire. This is a sinkhole called Devil's Dining Room. It's difficult to get a picture here because the entire area is encased in barbed wire. But I managed to hold my digital over the fence and snap one! Continuing on the trail for another 0.5 miles, you come to a junction and a decision... Chicken Point or Submarine Rock? I chose Chicken Point and took the trail to the right. This was a great choice and happened upon several areas of slick rock until I finally reached Chicken Point. This is a huge area of slick rock and has gorgeous vistas of Twin Buttes, Submarine Rock and the entire valley. My complaint here is that there were Jeep Tours everywhere and at one point there were 4 of them with almost 30 people on the slick rock. I hiked out as far I could on the slick rock where I was at a drop off of several hundred feet, took off my backpack, relaxed and enjoyed the view. Oh yes, I also had my MP3 payer with me, so I listened to some Bob Segar while I had my rest & snack and could drown out the tourists.
As I was sitting up on that slick rock, I saw Submarine Rock and thought it would be cool to visit that on the way back. So, I started back and when I got to the well-marked junction, I took the low road. Another good decision. This little side trip took me to the bottom of the canyon on a very easy, wooded trail, across a slick rock area dotted with black volcanic rock & red rock, crossing one Jeep trail and one wash and was only 2 miles roundtrip. The view from the floor of the canyon was gorgeous. Of course, once I was at the base of Submarine Rock I just had to climb it! There is no defined trail to the top but it is all slick rock on the way up. I climbed up and made it to the top where I explored for a while then headed back down and out to hook back up with the trail. After ascending the canyon and getting back onto Broken Arrow, I searched AGAIN for the trail to Battlement Mesa but couldn't find it.
I loved this hike. The views throughout were awesome. You can take this past Chicken Point and hike down Little Horse but that adds another 1.6 miles.
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