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Weatherford Trail #102
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mini location map2013-07-27
16 by photographer avatarddgrunning
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Weatherford Trail #102Flagstaff, AZ
Flagstaff, AZ
Hiking avatar Jul 27 2013
ddgrunning
Hiking23.40 Miles 5,370 AEG
Hiking23.40 Miles   7 Hrs   34 Mns   3.09 mph
5,370 ft AEG
 
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It's always a bit of a risk to consider a Humphreys summit in the middle of monsoon season. But, the timing worked on my calendar,so we decided to go for it. Got started a bit late (8:40), so I was worried that a thunderstorm would roll in before I could get to the top. The day before, it had been an all out downpour in Flagstaff in the afternoon. Thankfully, the ground is pretty porous up there, so despite the rain, the trail was not muddy.

My brother and I had our sights set on Humphreys, so we put the hammer down, while the rest of our group decided to take a more leisurely hike to Doyle or Fremont Saddle and back.

Clouds were patchy on an off as we made our way up to Doyle Saddle, but temperatures were perfect. As I headed over to Fremont Saddle, clouds got thicker and darker. At the crossover on Agassiz before descending to the saddle/connection with Summit Trail, the rain started. Didn't hear thunder, so I pulled out the poncho and headed down. The last mile to the summit was a slog, as the rain and wind only added to the challenge of the altitude.

Made it to the summit in 3 hours and 43 min. When I arrived, there was no visibility-completely engulfed in clouds, with a strong wind and light rain. But conditions change rapidly up there. Within five minutes, there was an opening in the clouds that allowed me to enjoy the view, but only for a minute--then back to clouds. My fingers were cold and swollen, making it a bit of a challenge to zip back on the bottom half of my hiking pants and try to pound out a short "at the top" text to my wife.

Still worried about lightning, I didn't stay long and headed back to the saddle, where the weather was much more temperate. Waited there for my brother, who was 15-20 min behind, and then enjoyed the trip back down. Luckily for us, the downpour that had been threatening all day did not come until we were enjoying a celebratory dinner in Flag :-)

Love this hike; love the Peaks!

A fair number of runners on the trail today, but otherwise, only a sporadic hiker or two.
Named place
Named place
Humphreys Peak
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