Arizona is a hiker's paradise, with 194 named mountain ranges and the world’s largest contiguous ponderosa pine forest. The state's highest point is Humphreys Peak, one of three peaks in the San Francisco Peaks north of Flagstaff.
There are many ways to explore Arizona’s mountains, but one of the best is by day hiking on a trail that leads to the summit of Humphreys Peak. This is a popular trail that attracts hikers from around the country, and it’s not hard to see why.
It’s a challenging trail that can be difficult to navigate at times, but it also has some of the most stunning views in Arizona. From the summit you can see everything from Grand Canyon National Park to the red rock cliffs of Oak Creek canyon.
If you’re a beginner and don’t have much experience hiking, this is not the right trail for you. There are many steep sections that require a lot of concentration and careful footing.
This is also a very challenging climb, so it's important to prepare for the challenge ahead before you get started. The climb is 7.7 km in length and you should expect to spend 5-8 hours in the backcountry before you reach the summit.
The trail begins at the lower parking lot of Arizona Snowbowl, which is a local ski resort. From there, you’ll take a short climb through a lush meadow of wildflowers before entering the forest. Then you’ll head to the Kachina Peaks Wilderness, which is protected by the Navajo, Hopi, Havasupai and Zuni tribes.