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What would I do when the water main breaks at Love Field, Prescott's Airport, and the City of Prescott shut it down for repairs? Thereby shutting off the water at the plant I work at, the plant shutting down, letting the employees go home for the day due to safety issues. Well, I needed no prompting when I was told I could go home! I hauled it home, asked my son, Chris, if he wanted to go, changed into hiking shorts, quickly packed my fanny pack, grabbed the walking stick, and then we boogied up Mingus Mountain: arriving at trail #110, the Gaddes Canyon Trail.
We were pumped when we started the hike. The trail starts out pretty level; however it is rocky pretty much the entire trip. It was like a million years ago the earth a had terrible battle, throwing rocks everywhere.
Within ten minutes, the trail began its descent into Gaddes Canyon, and soon you arrive at Gaddes Spring. The spring is fenced off; however, I spotted a small PCV pipe coming out of the ground in the trail and the head down into the canyon. Peering down the side of the trail, I spied a small tank full of water. As a matter of fact, overflowing onto the ground. We did not venture down there initially, saving the visit as we climbed out on our way back and treated ourselves by splashing water on our faces to cool down.
Upon reaching the bottom of the canyon we started the climb out of Gaddes canyon. It is not steep. I would rate it as easy, except for the rocks and a total of three down trees along the entire trail.
About a mile into the hike, the trail topped out on a ridge and hit an old dirt road. We hooked a left as the sign indicated and traveled this lovely piece of flat land. On the way back, it would afford us a great breather.
We traveled on the ridge following the road for a short time when we hooked a right back onto the trail. And continued until we began our climb down into Burnt Canyon. The trail does not allow for great vistas to see, but every once in a while, when you peer through the trees, you will catch glimpses of Granite Mountain in Prescott or the flats of Lonesome Valley.
This portion of the hike is a bit fast as you hike down a couple of switchbacks into the canyon through the pines and vegetation. Quite pleasant, and my son was enjoying it, hiking several paces in front of me.
After an hour and a half on the trail, give or take, the trail terminated at forest road 413. At this point Chris and I took a well deserve break before climbing back out. Snacking on treats, drinking water, and letting my feet air out and dry.
music, the winds caressing.
the towering pines
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Prescott FS Details
This trail is popular with campers on Mingus Mountain because it provides an easy day hike from the campground to the points overlooking Gaddes Canyon. The trail stays primarily in the ponderosa pine vegetation type and, consequently, there are not many viewing points on the trail except the edge of the rim before the trail drops down to Forest Road 413. It is not unusual to see deer along this trail.
Maps, other resources: Prescott National Forest, east half; U.S.G.S. topographic 7.5' quad for Hickey Mountain.
Trail layout: The trail leaves the lookout road descending to Gaddes Spring and then back to the ridge overlooking Gaddes Canyon. At mile 1.75 the trail descends steeply to where it ends on FR 4123.
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.