Sunday, August 31, 2014

Humphreys Peak, Arizona High Point

Humphreys Peak - 12,633
August 30, 2014

One of my current hiking/climbing goals is to summit all of the 11 western state high points.  Fortunately, the Arizona state high point is now in my backyard near Flagstaff, Arizona.  Humphreys Peak is the highest point on arcuate cluster of mountains called the San Francisco Peaks just north of town.  In fact, Humphreys and the surrounding high mountains are the remains of an ancient stratovolcano, much like the prominent volcanoes of the northwest U.S.  The surrounding landscape is dotted with younger cinder cones that have erupted as recently as 1,000 years ago. For more information on the geology, check this out HERE

Hiking Humphreys Peak is very straightforward.  Six of us (4 geologists and 2 biologists) hiked to the summit via the Humphreys Trail ~ 4 miles, 3,500 ft. up.  The trail begins at the Snowbowl parking lot and climbs up to a saddle, where it turns north and climbs the ridge to the true peak.  It took us about 3 hours to get up.  We spent almost an hour on the summit enjoying the nice weather and views.  It took another 2 hours to get down.

Completed Western State High Points (8): 
Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Utah, Nevada, California, Arizona

Western State High Points to do (3): 
New Mexico, Colorado, Montana

Kendrick Peak to the west
Friendly Firs
Looking east from the saddle between Humphreys and Agassiz Peaks
Casey and Karl on the summit ridge
Bird man George
El pico pic
Tampered with.