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Coal Mine Canyon, AZ

Guide 19 Triplogs  3 Topics
  4.5 of 5 
182 19 3
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Difficulty 3.5 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance Round Trip 6 miles
Trailhead Elevation 5,820 feet
Elevation Gain 500 feet
Accumulated Gain 500 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 4 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 8.5
Interest Historic, Seasonal Waterfall & Seasonal Creek
Backpack No
Dogs not allowed
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
5  2017-11-25 MountainMatt
5  2016-06-19 burntlizard
10  2015-04-27 chumley
7  2012-10-06
NE Arizona tour
8  2011-04-20 BubbaSue
4  2010-09-05 hippiepunkpirate
7  2010-05-08 JoelHazelton
4  2009-09-14 JoelHazelton
Page 1,  2,  3
Author Ben
author avatar Guides 2
Routes 0
Photos 20
Trips 3 map ( 30 miles )
Age 78 Male Gender
Location Glendale, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Oct, Nov, Nov, Dec → 9 AM
Seasons   ALL
Sun  5:07am - 7:44pm
0 Alternative

Bryce Spires on the Rez
by Ben

Notice: Oct 2009
Descending into the canyon has been prohibited by the Navajo Nation. Hiking is now permitted only along the upper rim. If you proceed beyond the description below, you may also require a permit from the Hopi Nation as the canyon extends across the tribal boundaries.

Park near the lower (north) concrete tables of the Navajo Nation picnic ground. To the west, you can see the site of an old Mormon coal mine. Around the canyon walls, near the top, you will see a thin vein of soft coal. Other spots were mined too. Walk to the east to find the unmarked trailhead. Coal Mine Canyon is mostly on the Navajo Reservation. The trail starts to the east of the windmill and campground. About 150 feet west of a fence that goes over the edge, a faint trail leads down the north side of a mound can be found. Go around and more to the east, under the lower end of a fence. Then down the steep drainage toward the bottom, and into this picturesque canyon.

As you continue down, drop bread crumbs so you will be able to identify the correct exit when you return. The canyon head has about five fingers and can surprise relaxed trekkers looking up at the Bryce-like scenes. If it has rained, expect to get dirty. Wear gloves as your hands will be used in the descent and return upward. Walk down the canyon to the northeast. After the decline, the hike is easy. About three miles in, you will be at the base of the 400 foot white and Red tower known as The Ghost. Along the way in and back, you should be able to see many arches and fantastic formations. Should you continue another mile or so, you will reach the opening of another beautiful canyon. Ha Ho No Geh Canyon is also magnificent.

There is no water along the way, and the hike would be very hot in summer. The trailhead elevation is 5820 feet while the base of The Ghost is at 5320. Most of the decline happens in the first mile. The bright colors of red, white, black, brown, gold, and gray make this one of the best hikes possible for photography. We completed this hike just after the rain and got great pictures. It doesn't get any better than this. It should be part of National Park made up of the Moencopi canyons of Coal, Ha Ho No Geh, Bat, and Blue.

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2007-02-14 Ben
    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 $$
    Navajo Recreation Permit $5 per person per day, camping $5 per person per day. Study the Permit Details

    Navajo Nation Reservation
    Navajo Permits & Services

    Map Drive
    FR / Dirt Road / Gravel - Car Okay

    To hike
    Follow 89 north of Flagstaff to 160. Go east to Tuba City and turn south on 264. Drive 16 miles to Mile Marker 337.25 and exit on the dirt trail to the left of the road. You will see a windmill on your left and a small rodeo ground on your right. Park near the picnic tables and walk back east to the trailhead. It is vague.
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
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