With our local forests still closed, I got the ok to head out on another hiking adventure. This time I decided to head to Flagstaff to try some of their Six Pack peaks. I left San Diego at 4:30 am, in part of avoid some LA traffic, but since there were afternoon showers and thunderstorms in the forecast, I also needed to be mindful of that.
There are four peaks in the general Flagstaff area; Humphreys, Kendrick, Mt. Elden and Bill Williams. Since Bill Williams is near the town of Williams, that was my first stop for the weekend. I pulled into the parking lot at the trailhead and set off. The trail is incredibly well marked with green blazes to guide you along. I set off a bit too fast and the elevation gently reminded me to ease up my pace. My starting elevation was 6,900’.
The trail worked its way ever upward. Some nice collections of wildflowers would be found for much of the hike. I did have to break out the bug net as the flies were just bothersome enough. As I continued climbing, I kept an eye on the skies. A few clouds here and there but all looked good. The trees kept me from having any views of the area, but just walking under the pines and eventually some aspens made up for that.
The trail connects with a service road almost at the summit. It was here I met another hiker. We chatted a bit before heading in our respective directions. The summit is home to a variety of communication towers and a fire lookout tower. There were two service trucks and two off-road vehicles parked near the top. I chatted with the off-roaders a bit before heading to the tower.
While the tower is closed, you can climb part way up. As I sat on the stairs having a well earned snack, I was soaking in the views. I found one reference mark but that was it. Being mindful of the weather and needing to still get to Flagstaff to stay with a college friend and her husband, I set back down the trail.
It certainly was easier coming down from 9,256 feet than the climb up. Back at the car I logged the hike at 7.8 miles in 4:52, with an elevation gain of 2,383 feet.
I am an avid peak bagger, sometimes backpacker, and former sea kayaker living in San Diego. In 2019, I became the third person to complete the San Diego 100 Peak Challenge. Not stopping with that accomplishment, I set my sights on the harder San Diego Sierra Club 100 Peak list, which I completed in 2021. In addition, I have conquered several Six-Pack of Peaks challenges (SoCal, San Diego, and Arizona-Winter). Beyond attempting the San Diego Sierra Club 100 Peak list a second time, I am looking forward to exploring new summits and new adventures across the southwest.