My Number one favorite walk/hike in Flagstaff is the Equestrian Bypass trail through Picture Canyon which is also a section of the Flagstaff Loop Trail and the Arizona Trail. The trail follows the rim of Walnut canyon, the views are gorgeous and there are lots of opportunities to see wildlife. This trail was originally designed to give horse riders and packers an alternate route around Flagstaff to avoid traffic. While you can still meet the occasional horse and rider, its also become a favorite among hikers and bikers.
You can start this segment at both ends. Either from the North from the Sandy Seep Trailhead Off Highway 89 just past Townsend-Winona Road or from the South from the East Route 66 road bridge over the Railroad Tracks. No matter which end of that passage you start from you can end in the Picture Canyon Natural and Cultural Flagstaff Open Space which has its own wonderful trail system.
I’ll be leading a hike on a segment of this trail that will start at Noon on New Year’s Day and I want to invite all the Willow Bend friends to join me.
Directions: We will start from the mailbox parking area located just off East Route 66 next to the road bridge over the railroad tracks. Head towards Picture Canyon. Then, from the entrance into Picture Canyon: Stay on East Route 66 past Picture Canyon and toward Highway 40 for another 2 miles (still on East Route 66) and as you come off a steep East Route 66 hill there will be an open space off to your left with an abandoned water tank. The small parking area will have a series of mailboxes in a row. If you follow Route 66 over the railroad tracks, YOU HAVE GONE TO FAR!
I will be at the parking area location by 11:15 am on 1.1.2021 in a small gray Ford truck. The hike will be about 3 to 4 total miles of this segment leading into Picture Canyon.
I hope you join me on this adventure!
Post written by Willow Bend member and supporter extraordinaire Jack Welch (photo credit Betsey Bruner).
This is the last post in our Holiday Adventure Series. We hope we were able to provide fun ideas for local activities you can do off screen just before we all go back to virtual learning. Happy New Year from the Willow Bend board, staff, members and volunteers.