Loy Canyon to Secret Cabin
Saturday May 25, 2013 Carpool 7:15am, Hike 9:45am
Moderate-Difficult 12+ miles RT, 2,000 ft elevation gain
Wear your red, white and blue for this Memorial Day weekend climb up a desert wilderness canyon to an old homestead cabin in the Secret Mountain Wilderness. The trail was used by the Samuel Loy family in the 1880's to move their cattle from the Rim to the Valley. The trail starts by skirting the fence line of the Hancock Ranch. Sheer cliffs of Vermillion and buff sandstone form a colorful backdrop for the desert garden of Manzanita, Catclaw, Cholla and prickly pear that carpet the canyon floor. Natural rock sculptures carved by flash floods provide scenic settings along the way. Underground moisture is sufficient year-round to support a desert riparian area rich in bird and animal life.
Near the end of the canyon, the trail completes the majority of the climb to a high saddle that leads to the top of a mesa called Secret Mountain. Pick up the Secret Mountain Trail and climb through Ponderosa pines to the summit. The trail will then descend past man-made concrete and stone stock ponds to the remains of the Secret Cabin and corral.
Optional lunch afterwards at Miley's Cafe 7000 Hwy 179 Sedona 86351 (1 block South of Verde Valley School Rd in Oak Creek Village). [masked]
Carpool: Bagel Gourmet 16845 N. 29th Ave #4 Phoenix, AZ 85053 located on the West end of the Fry's Shopping Center at I-17/Bell Road.
Directions to Trailhead: From the "Y" roundabout in Sedona, take a Left on US89A, go 5 miles past Sedona & turn Right on FR525 (dirt road). Follow the signs toward Loy Butte, 9.3 miles to the trailhead just before Hancock Ranch. RED ROCK PASSES NOT REQUIRED! Higher clearance vehicles recommended.
Bring: 3-4 liters water, high energy snacks, hat, sunscreen, camera & $1 voluntary donation to the 3H fund.