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Little Granite Mountain Trail #37, AZ

Guide 24 Triplogs  1 Topic
  3.2 of 5 
132 24 1
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance One Way 4.2 miles
Trailhead Elevation 6,100 feet
Elevation Gain 512 feet
Accumulated Gain 888 feet
Avg Time One Way 2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 7.16
Backpack Possible - Not Popular
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20  2019-06-28
Upper Pasture Trail #38
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6  2016-02-20
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5  2013-04-28
Little Granite Mountain Loop
Page 1,  2
Author Abe
author avatar Guides 17
Routes 0
Photos 296
Trips 59 map ( 426 miles )
Age 62 Male Gender
Location Prescott, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Oct, May, Apr, Sep → Early
Seasons   Spring to Autumn
Sun  5:41am - 7:32pm
Official Route
4 Alternative
Historic Fire Perimeteracres
🔥 2018 Stubbs Fire34.7 mi**

by Abe

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For years I have avoided Granite Mountain. It looks pretty every day I see it, just on the other side of Prescott. Lots of folks go there, and some tell me at work what a great weekend they had camping and hiking in the area. Without a doubt, a trendy spot for locals around Prescott and those visiting from elsewhere. So I never ventured forth to check it out on my own. What a mistake!

Super Bowl Sunday, chores were done, I was getting fidgety, so I asked my youngest boy, Chris, if he wanted to go hiking. Off we went after a quick packing of our gear, a quick look at an area from my loose-leaf notebook full of write-ups from the Prescott National Forest to pick a hike, and down the road we went for our impromptu hike.

The trailhead was packed! And small to boot. But I managed to maneuver my jeep between vehicles with my front end slightly under a tree. Chris and I wasted no time throwing our gear on and hitting the trail. Easy to find. Starting the journey uphill, it is clear as day a very popular trail. Signs of boot prints, bike tire prints, and occasional horse prints fill the path as it meanders through the brush with scattered pines, juniper, and boulders.

I let Chris lead the way to set the pace, and surprisingly it was a brisk one. He is on the junior high basketball team, and when I told him of the benefits of hiking as a way of getting in shape, I think he took it seriously and me to the task. So I just gave him his lead.

The trail levels a bit once on top, the trees a bit thicker mingling among some large rocks. Interestingly, I noted minimal signs of the bark beetle, which was pleasant to see. Here and there were small snow patches under the shade, protected from the direct sunlight, reminding us of the small storm that recently passed. Another sad winter, the ninth, I believe, with very little snowfall. But, at a gate, we were taking a breather, and when I looked to my right through the trees, I witnessed an awesome sight. The snowcap San Francisco Peaks majestic in the clear air and the red rock country of Sedona! Beautiful.

Pass the gate, and the trail begins a downward trek. A short distance, we come upon Clark Spring Trail #40, which would hook to the right and head on down to Granite Basin Lake. Nearby, three young men with trail maintenance implements laying by their sides were kicking back, taking a break, and enjoying the day. We said howdy and continue our trek downward, which got a little steeper and opened up into brush and boulder country, affording us a fantastic view to the north. I spotted Hyde Mountain and Juniper Mesa about 25-miles away as the crow flies.

We worked our way down and passed a couple of young ladies struggling back up. Neither had any gear nor water, so I offered them a bottle of water. They declined and continued to trudge on, youth at its finest, and Chris and I continued our travels down the trail.

The trail levels off for the rest of our hike. It was then I began to notice charred, burned skeletons of trees cast forth throughout the countryside from the Doce fire of 1990. That human-made caused fire burned over 300 acres. And believe it or not! Enjoying the view and not paying attention to the trail, I walked into a prickly pear overlapping the trail! I pulled back quickly, but to no avail, a couple of spines found its mark in my skin. A minor annoyance Chris and I kept on walking until we stopped at the end of the hike, and I could pull the stickers, two of 'em, out with tweezers.

At the Upper Pasture Trail #38, we stopped, kicked back, and took our break before turning around and heading back to the trailhead. Now, the confession, before the hike, I did not study the write-up thoroughly. I just knew it stated the trail was 3.3-miles in length, and it hit another trail. I thought we hit the end of the trail! The pace was right; the timing was right. However, after reviewing the trail signs during the hike and write-up after the hike, neither seems to match mileage.

But I will say this, the area holds promise, and I will return. Granted, we ran into several folks and dogs, young and old, but I will return.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

Gate Policy: If a gate is closed upon arrival, leave it closed after you go through. If it is open, leave it open. Leaving a closed gate open may put cattle in danger. Closing an open gate may cut them off from water. Please be respectful, leave gates as found.

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

2004-02-07 Abe

    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 $$

    Prescott Forest
    Prescott National Forest Pass

    Only trailheads with six "amenities" have fees. Amenities are picnic tables, trash, toilet, parking, interpretive signing and security.

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    0 mile: At the intersection of Glassford Road and Highway 89A in Prescott Valley, turn left onto 89A. Head toward Granite Mountain.

    9.1 miles: Turn left on Williamson Valley Road.

    11.6 miles: Turn right on Iron Springs Road.

    16.4 miles: Trailhead just on the right side of Iron Springs Road.

    Forest service write-up: "The primary access to this trail is from the Iron Springs Road approximately 7 miles west of downtown Prescott. The trailhead is just 3.2 miles west of the turnoff to Granite Basin Lake (FR 374).
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
    prehydrate & stay hydrated
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