Peak(s):  Cedar Mountain, AZ - 7061
Date Posted:  12/31/2013
Date Climbed:   11/26/2013
Author:  mennoguy
 Grand Canyon National Park, The Road Less Traveled   

Grand Canyon National Park
Cedar Mountain 7061
~9 miles 1400 ft class 2
Partner: Dorothy (my sister)

This is the second Thanksgiving break I have made the trip to Arizona to visit my sister and hike in the Grand Canyon. Last year we climbed Escalante Butte, a stiff bushwhack with a class 4 summit block. Unfortunately I was in between cameras so I couldn't take pictures to post my standard trip report for Escalante. Recent snow made any trip into the canyon more treacherous than I wanted to deal with without extra traction. A quick look at surrounding summits led us to Cedar Mountain.

The trailhead is at the desert view visitor's center. We popped in to check on the route. The ranger told us to go through the Cedar Mountain apartments to get to the Cedar Mountain Road. It was easy enough to find the road so we started our mellow descent of the Cedar Mountain Road. For the first half mile or so we followed a ski track then we noticed a superhighway constructed by an elk herd heading down the mountain. The elk trail saved us a total of maybe 45 minutes down and back. Soon we arrived at the intersection with the trail which heads in the direction of Comanche Point. Comanche Point was what I originally wanted to summit but I didn't want to slog through 14-15 miles of slushy snow with a slight head cold.

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Little Colorado River canyon

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Cedar Mountain Road

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First good view of cedar

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First good view of the canyon

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Dorothy likes the views of the canyon

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The meadow


We turned right and headed down another mile of mellow road to a large meadow west of Cedar Mountain. From there the route is obvious, just go up. We aimed for a spot just to the right of a small cliff band. The cliff band would be trivial without snow. Despite the wet snow we made really good time up the final 600 feet. The next test was to find the actual summit on the flat plateau. I knew from the topo that it was on the west side so we explored the west side and soon found the cairn.

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Excellent views all around

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Arizona's highpoint

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Looking towards the canyon

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View towards the east

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Snowman cairn


Did I mention that this was a bluebird day. There was no wind and we could see all the way from Humphrey's peak to Navajo Peak in Utah.

We returned via the same route, making great time up the elk track. We made a few extra stops to soak in a perfect day.

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We couldn't resist

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The snowman shows the way

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We made a new friend

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Parting shots of the canyon

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Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
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Comments or Questions
MtnHub

Beautiful!
01/01/2014 15:50
The snow really adds to the beauty of the Canyon! And I love your snow cairns! Ha! True LNT and probably only good for yourself for a day or two! Thanks!


boudreaux

Off the Beaten Path For Sure
01/02/2014 15:26
A nice way to see the canyon and get a peak in too! Kudos for doing it with your sister! I got my sister to climb her 1st peak this summer and now she is talking about doing another! Aren't sisters great!



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