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Harquahala Mtn Trail

 
Harquahala Mtn Trail

Page Type: Route

Location: Arizona, United States, North America

Object Title: Harquahala Mtn Trail

Route Type: Hiking

Season: Spring

Time Required: Half a day

Route Quality: 
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Page By: Dean

Created/Edited: Apr 19, 2008 / Dec 15, 2008

Object ID: 397533

Hits: 1975 

Page Score: 83.1%  - 16 Votes 

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Overview

The mountain has a road you can drive up, which works for some. I listed spring as prime time to do this hike but I would imagine you could do it in the fall and winter as well.
 
The lone palm tree..
The entry gate & palm tree

The hike from the BLM trailhead is 10.8 miles long and you will gain 3400 feet in elevation along the way. Sign in at the entry register box, located about 150 feet up the trail from the information kiosk and
entry fence. It took us 5 1/2 hours round trip and I've read of a couple instances where the hikers took 7 hours. It depends on your speed of course and conditioning. Eleven miles and 3400 feet of elevation gain is a good workout and not to be taken lightly.
 
BLM road
The road in

Getting There

The author of the overall page has it right on. Watch for the lone palm tree on the north side of the highway between mile markers 70-71. A modern gate
with no sign indicating that this is the entry to this BLM trailhead is
present at this time. Perhaps they will never post this entry point as it might minimize vandalism of the trailhead facility. The road to the TH is signed however by little signs that say "trail". The road to the TH is a bit rough but a friend made it there fairly easily in a passenger car. This could change if a storm messes up the road at some future time but for now,
4WD is not necessary and a careful driver can get a passenger vehicle there as well. Parking for 7 or 8 vehicles and a modern outhouse with a cement
pathway to it is a nice addition. The outhouse was clean and stocked
with T.P. when we were there. Be sure to haul out your own trash, there are
no trash barrels.
 
The trailhead area
The trailhead

Route Description

 
Trailhead information
The trail starts here


At first the trail is an old road track but it soon becomes a single path
that will guide you easily up the mountain. It is a well graded trail
and although the foot path is rocky, it is not difficult and could be done
by anyone in good health. You will pass a couple historical markers with
information about what you are looking at. See my trip report for pictures
of these. More of these information signs are present at the summit area.
 
Cactus flowers in bloom
Flowering cactus

Springtime will allow you to enjoy the flowers (if any) that might be present. Saquaro trees will be present much of the way up and since they come in all shapes and sizes, you will find them enjoyable to look at.
 
Saquaros rule
Saquaros

Camping

 
BLM Information sign
 


You could camp at the trailhead as one of our party did while two of us just slept in our vehicles.

Essential Gear

WATER - there is no water at the trailhead. Bring all that you will need and then some. I'd avoid doing this hike in the summer, it would be like a furnace.

Good footwear / A protective hat / Sunscreen and sunglasses

The usual essentials like food, a compass and map and common sense. Stay on the trail. Do not short cut or cut switchbacks.

Watch for rattlesnakes. While we did not see them, this is rattlesnake country so pay attention to what is on and near the trail.
 
Looking south from the summit
From the summit


While there are antenna and other structures adorning the top of the peak,
these are fairly easily ignored. Please avoid messing with any of the
man made stuff placed on the top. Also, don't envy those who ride up in
their air conditioned vehicles, they are kissing all the joy of visiting the top of this mountain.

Images

Map of the trailBLM Information sign