Billings Gap - Petrified Forest NP, AZ | HikeArizona
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Billings Gap - Petrified Forest NP, AZ

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Sedona Loop Hike
Sedona Loop Hike
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Difficulty 1.5 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance Lasso-Loop 2.75 miles
Trailhead Elevation 5,634 feet
Elevation Gain -54 feet
Accumulated Gain 142 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 1.5 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 3.46
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
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11  2022-04-08 LindaAnn
15  2022-04-08 Tortoise_Hiker
author avatar Guides 80
Routes 426
Photos 5,463
Trips 1,573 map ( 11,130 miles )
Age 42 Female Gender
Location Ahwatukee, AZ
co-author avatarGuides 1
Routes 80
Photos 8,023
Trips 3,069 map (27,586 Miles)
Age 60 Male Gender
Location Mesa, AZ
Associated Areas
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Northeast Region
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Preferred Apr, Mar, Oct, Nov → 9 AM
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Sun  6:13am - 6:05pm
Official Route
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Geology Nearby
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unique-looking hoodoo
by LindaAnn & Tortoise_Hiker

 Likely In-Season!
Overview: Easy hike around the perimeter of Blue Mesa.

Hike: Neither the trail nor trailhead are signed. Starting from the southern end of the vehicle pullout, head southeast on a fairly distinct trail. While this hike can be traveled in either direction, the trail is most distinct along the northern half of the mesa, thus making a clockwise loop most logical.

As you head generally east, keeping the edge of the mesa on your left, views abound of the purple and white badlands below you. Use caution while standing on the edges to take pictures. The path is loose clay while dry, and a mucky mess if wet. Most of the petrified wood along the path is colorful weathered gravel at this point, but pretty. Larger chunks are scattered around, with the largest pieces visible on the steep hillsides below you. Much of the clay hillsides have weathered into unique-looking hoodoos. If you lose the path, just continue following the edge of the mesa, it is nearly impossible to get lost and your vehicle is visible in the distance most of the time.

Approaching the northeastern edge of the mesa, Billings Tank is visible to your northeast, and Billings Gap is to the east. From this point, you'll head south, then southwest, and the path becomes fainter in places. This area also has some larger chunks of petrified wood as you choose your route through the white clay. Views along the southern half of the mesa are a little less impressive than the northern half, but if you stay close to the edge, you will see some impressive features and might even spot a hoodoo with a large piece of wood sticking out both sides of it.

Approaching the western end of the mesa, head northwest back towards your vehicle, and you will likely reconnect with the initial trail shortly before reaching the parking area. This is a pleasant, easy hike, with no crowds, and is worth combining with the popular Blue Mesa Loop located just a few hundred feet away.

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2022-04-09 LindaAnn & Tortoise_Hiker
    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 $$

    Petrified Forest National Park
    $20 per car (for 7 days), Bike/Walk-in $10 Petrified National Forest

    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    From Petrified Forest Road, turn east onto Blue Mesa Scenic Rd. After the road turns into a one-way loop, park in the third vehicle pullout at the very north end of the road just as it curves sharply left.
    page created by LindaAnn on Apr 09 2022 8:35 am

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