• Fall color update: Mogollon Rim, Oct 4, 2012
    Posted by at October 5th
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    Fall foliage is just beginning to emerge on the Mogollon Rim.  Today we noted lots of sulfur yellow in Boxelders, spotty groves of amber oaks and gold-kissed aspens on….. 
    Oak color, October 4, 2012
    HOUSTON BROTHERS TRAIL #171
    Mogollon Rim
    Wild geranium
    The densely wooded terrain of the Mogollon Rim is riddled with water-sculpted canyons and bizarre fossiliferous limestone formations.  The fractured earth makes for an interesting mix of flat-floored forests and steep gorges where water collects and cool air settles in pockets of perennial, mossy dampness.  These secluded, moist microclimates feed communities of Big-tooth maples, willows, boxelders and oaks that burst out in flaming color palettes when nudged by the cool nights and low light of early autumn.  The Rim’s Cabin Loop system of trails wiggles among spring-fed meadows and water harboring draws that play host to autumnal splotches of honey-and-crimson-colored foliage. The best part about Rim country fall color is its relative rarity—it pops ups here and there making each “find” feel more special than the last.  Cabin Loop trails Barbershop, U-Bar, Fred Haught and–as we visited today—Houston Brothers–all harbor visually delicious color spots that add elements of treasure hunting thrills to the routes.
    Fall color at Aspen Spring, Oct 4, 2012
    LENGTH:  7 miles one-way
    RATING: easy (some route-finding required)
    ELEVATION: 7,000′-7,774′
    GETTING THERE:
    From Payson, travel north on AZ87 (Beeline Hwy) to Clint’s Well.  From here, continue 9.4 on AZ87 to just before milepost 300 and turn right onto FR95.  Follow FR95 6.5 miles to a bridge over East Clear Creek and veer right to stay on FR95.  Continue 4.5 miles to FR139A (a few yards past a sign for Houston Draw), turn left and go 0.2 mile to the trailhead marked by a sign for Fred Haught Trail.   Roads are good gravel/dirt with winding mountain grades—sedans okay.
    INFO: Mogollon Rim Ranger District, Coconino National Forest


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    Arizona Hiking

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    Bio: Serial blogger, manic hiker and “mom” to a dozen adopted dogs, Mare Czinar has been exploring Arizona trails for more than 20 years. After being led astray (or just plain confused) by outdated hiking books and online resources (hence the tagline: We got lost, so you don’t have to), Czinar sought to create a fully vetted, frequently updated online hike travelogue with current driving and hiking directions to spare fellow hikers the mental and physical wear-and-tear of aimless wandering. In addition, blog entries are amended when road closures or wildfires restrict trail access. When not working, blogging, writing about the great outdoors or picking up dog poo, Czinar attempts to “stay found” while checking out new trails.


    Website: http://arizonahiking.blogspot.com/