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Waldron - Dripping Springs - Silver Bell Loop
2 Photosets

2017-04-15  
2016-10-30  
mini location map2016-10-30
19 by photographer avatarBiFrost
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page 1   2
 
Waldron - Dripping Springs - Silver Bell LoopNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 30 2016
BiFrost
Hiking10.98 Miles 2,458 AEG
Hiking10.98 Miles   6 Hrs      1.95 mph
2,458 ft AEG      23 Mns Break
 
1st trip
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slowandsteady
After doing Cardenas Butte the day before we decided on Waldron-Dripping Springs-Silverbell Loop. We've had this one on the list for awhile wanting to do Waldron Trail but make a loop out of it instead of out and back. Starting from the locked gate TH we headed in on Waldron Trail to sign about 3/4 mile in. The trail then meanders down canyon and within 1/2 mile we started seeing views of the canyon. Shortly after that the trail pops over a small ridge and then opens up to the Hermit Basin below and bigger views of the canyon. Lots of switchbacks down to the Hermit Trail junction and glad we were not going up this section.

From the Hermit junction headed short ways to the Dripping Springs junction and being somewhat early we decided to check out Santa Maria Spring only 1/2 mile down Hermit Trail. Ran into 3 backpackers around the spring and talked to them for awhile who were headed for Hermit CG. Then went back to the Dripping Springs junction and continued on to the spring. Ran into 3 day hikers on the way there and at the spring. The normal drip coming off the spring but we had plenty of water for the day.

After nice break at Dripping Springs we headed up Silver Bell Trail which we had done with backpacks a few years back as part of the GEMs hike. Much easier this time without the backpack but still the trail is challenging in the first mile crossing Coconino layer that climbs steeply above Dripping Springs. Eventually the trail follows the drainage and tops out on the rim. From here we followed old road that crosses the rim area. I wasn't 100% sure if all roads connected back to the Waldron TH but they did. Getting back to the vehicle was quicker than expected which followed good path and even tracked part of the park boundary road. Very few other hikers all day for a weekend in the canyon and nobody at the Waldron TH .
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