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Inspiration Point Trail, AZ

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Difficulty 1 of 5
Distance One Way 0.5 miles
Trailhead Elevation 6,957 feet
Elevation Gain -32 feet
Accumulated Gain 28 feet
Avg Time One Way 1 hour
Kokopelli Seeds 0.59
Backpack No
Dogs not allowed
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28  2021-04-07
Echo Canyon Loop
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10  2021-02-14
Big Loop - Chiricahua National Monument
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2  2020-04-09
Big Loop - Chiricahua National Monument
toddak
29  2019-11-04
Big Loop - Chiricahua National Monument
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7  2019-06-03
Big Loop - Chiricahua National Monument
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38  2019-05-24
Chiricahua National Monument Trails Loop
markthurman53
23  2018-04-21
Big Loop - Chiricahua National Monument
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25  2016-04-02
Chiricahua NM Loop with Sugarloaf
Tortoise_Hiker
Page 1,  2,  3
Author markthurman53
author avatar Guides 162
Routes 683
Photos 7,885
Trips 532 map ( 4,888 miles )
Age 67 Male Gender
Location Tucson, Arizona
Historical Weather
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Preferred   Oct, Nov, Mar, Apr → Any
Seasons   Early Autumn to Late Spring
Sun  5:11am - 7:26pm
Official Route
 
12 Alternative
 
Water


Maybe not Inspirational but great views.
by markthurman53

CHIRICAHUA NATIONAL MONUMENT

Chiricahua National Monument is on the north side of the Chiricahua Mountains in the Southeast corner of Arizona. About as far southeast as you can go in Arizona without being in New Mexico or Mexico. This is almost a fairy tale land of Rock spires, pinnacles, balanced rocks, and hoodoos where the laws of gravity don’t seem to apply. Although the park road traverses the park, to fully enjoy this park requires getting out of the car and hiking some of the 17 miles of trails. All the trails in the park are in excellent condition and well signed.

This 12000-acre park was established on April 18, 1924, to preserve the park's natural wonders of weathered volcanic tuff. In 1934 during the great depression, the CCC built the park buildings, many of which still exist today. The many park trails throughout the park today were also constructed by the CCC. Before the monument's 1880s existence, the area was settled by ranchers and, prior to that, the Apaches. The monument has displays on the history, plants, and animals of this unique environment.

Geology-wise; when the Pacific Plate was being subducted under the west coast of the North American plate, Arizona was under compression, causing the Mesozoic and Paleozoic rocks to be folded and faulted and older layers were overriding younger. Once the pacific plate spreading ridge reached the North American plate, subduction ceased, and Arizona was now under extension or stretching forces creating an alternating system of mountains and valleys (Horst and Grabens). Early on in the extensional period of Arizona, large pools of molten rock formed under areas of Arizona, and this is where Chiricahua Mountains come in. In an eruption 1000 times greater than the Mount Saint Helen eruption, this magma erupted violently and formed what is known as the Turkey Creek Caldera, a crater 12 miles across. This crater is located in the Chiricahua Mountains in Turkey Creek and west of the Chiricahua ridgeline. The resulting explosion covered the monument with ash over 2000 feet thick, forming the Rhyolitic Tuff that now caps the park. Time and weathering formed the many bazaar rock formations now seen in the park.

If you don’t mind the 2-hour drive from Tucson, Chiricahua Monument is a great place to visit and hike the scenic packed trails. This is relatively remote, so usually not crowded. The four or five times I have been there less than 50 visitors, and at least two of the times less than four cars in the park, and one of them was a park ranger (During the COVID thing).

INSPIRATION POINT TRAIL

Overview
Inspiration Point Trail is a short 0.5-mile trail that leads to, you guessed it, Inspiration Point. If you are on the Big Balanced Rock Trail it is a worthwhile 1 mile round trip to Inspiration Point. This is a fairly level walk all the way to the point. From the point, there are great views over pretty much all of Chiricahua National Monument and areas west. Hunt Canyon is to the east and Totem Canyon to the west. From up here, it is easy to understand how Totem Canyon got its name. The tall columnar pillars lined up side by side of Totem Canyon almost look like Roman soldiers marching in formation. From the point, Rhyolite Canyon is directly below along with the junction of the Ed Riggs Trail, Hailstone Trail and the Mushroom Rock Trail.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

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

2021-06-06 markthurman53

    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.

    Permit $$
    National Monument Fee $10-25 per 7 Days

    Chiricahua National Monument
    Chiricahua NM $5 per person / 7 Day Entrance Fee


    Directions
    Map Drive
    or
    Road
    Connector trail - Not Applicable

    To hike
    From Interstate 10 at Wilcox take AZ186 south about 34 miles. Take AZ181 east 3 miles to the Monument entrance. Access from the south at Douglas is along AZ186 north and AZ 181, about 60 miles. Access from the east is over a long dirt road over the Chiricahua Mountains through Portal Arizona. This eastern route is not recommended as the road may be impassable during bad weather or winter snows.
    page created by joebartels on Jun 06 2021 11:37 am
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
    help comment issue

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