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Clark_GriswoldA gentle mountain


Voted 8/10

One of the interesting things about Arizona's second highest mountain is its very gentle terrain. Despite being classified as a strato-volcano, Baldy has the appearance of being a shield volcano. If observed from the east on the summit of Escudilla Mountain, Baldy appears to be little more than a small highpoint on a gentle ridge and is very easily overlooked or missed all together. In fact, if someone was unfamiliar with the White Mountains in eastern Arizona, they might mistake the much more visibly prominent Escudilla for Mount Baldy. Compared to the San Francisco Peaks near Flagstaff, which are very prominent in the surrounding land and impossible to miss, Baldy seems like nothing at all.

The plus side to this gentle high elevation mountain is its importance as a watershed, and the abundant high elevation spruce-fir forest which covers an enormous area of land in the White Mountains. Even though the highest elevations are not that high, the relief around Baldy is gentle and a significant amount of area is over 10,000 feet (perhaps greater than 25,000 acres). The western and southern slopes of Baldy receive a large amount of both winter and summer precipitation (well over 30 inches), and have a large area of spruce-fir forest: something which is fairly rare in Arizona. Perhaps Baldy's true appeal lies not in its prominence or the view that can be seen from its summit, but from its hydrological and ecological importance.
Posted May 16, 2009 2:59 pm

AndinistalocoSummit of Mt. Baldy


Voted 10/10

Here's a word on the summit, since there seems to be a lot of confusion.

Mt. Baldy has two summits - north and south. The north one is more the culmination of a high meadow on a ridge, whereas the south one is the more striking bald hump at the very end of the trail. Both of these summits (of course) look higher from the other one, and it's hard to say which might be higher.

Herein lies the problem. According to older USGS maps, the reservation boundary line cuts between the two summits, which is why the southern one has technically been off limits to non-tribal members. Strangely enough, the newer USGS topo shows the boundary moved so that both summits are on the reservation... which means both may now be off limits.

As far as elevation goes, the maps have the southern summit at 11403, whereas the northern one has no exact elevation... but the last contour line is at 11400, which would mean that summit could be anywhere from 11400 to 11439 feet. Though it doesn't necessary look as though it's higher, the map would suggest that it probably is.
Posted Oct 19, 2009 12:30 pm

Clark_GriswoldRe: Summit of Mt. Baldy


Voted 8/10

Thats interesting. I looked at the recent topo map in the images and it leads me to the question of, "where did the elevation of 11420' come from"? Where did that come from?
Posted Jan 14, 2011 2:24 pm

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