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Sunday, August 16, 2009


YEAGER CANYON LOOP Prescott National Forest This scenic route melds three unique trails into one wide loop along the southern slopes of Mingus Mountain. In order to get the tough climbing out of the way, it’s best to hike clockwise. From the trailhead, head down into the pinion-and-juniper-dotted drainage and hang a left to pick up Yeager Canyon Trail #28 which parallels Highway 89 for a short stretch before angling east where it takes on the exposed ridgelines above Prescott Valley. At the two-mile-point, veer right at a three-way intersection, continue a few yards on an old dirt road and look for the (easy-to-miss) sign for Yeager Cabin Trail # 111 on the right. Here, the trail drops into a side canyon, cutting through a dense forest of Ponderosa pines and oaks with many sun-soaked clearings. After summer storms, water can be found in the low-lying ravines. Trail #111 continues for 1.9 miles to Allen Springs road. Here, turn right onto the road and hike about a quarter-mile to Little Yeager Canyon Trail #533 on the right. This final segment showcases a vibrant splattering of blooming shrubs and wildflowers against a backdrop of wide-angle vistas of Prescott Valley. HIGHLIGHTS: expansive views of Prescott Valley LENGTH: 6-mile loop RATING: moderate ELEVATION RANGE: 6,000 – 7,200 feet DRIVING DISTANCE FROM PHOENIX: 125 miles GETTING THERE: From Prescott, go east on Highway 89A for 10 miles to an unmarked dirt turnout on the right side of the road. The parking area is near a road sign that states: “Flagstaff 69, Jerome 10.” INFORMATION: Verde Ranger District, Prescott National Forest, 928-443-8001

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