Passage #32 - Elden Mountain

Bridge over the Rio de Flag Location:  Interstate 40 to Schultz Pass

Length:  13.7 miles

Southern Access Point:  Old Walnut Canyon Road Trailhead
- GPS Coordinates:  35.20249° N, 111.48559° W
- Access: From Flagstaff, travel east on I 40 and take the Walnut Canyon National Monument exit. Head south for 3.5 miles, then turn right/west at Old Walnut Canyon Road (FR 303). The road will turn to dirt and is not passable for passenger cars or trucks with horse trailers. The trailhead is almost 4 miles west on the south side of FR 303.

Northern Access Point:  Schultz Pass
- GPS Coordinates:  35.28684° N, 111.62627° W
- Access: To reach the starting point, drive on Interstate 17 (or I-40) to downtown Flagstaff, and drive north on Highway 180 (North Fort Valley Road). After you pass the Sechrist School on the right (east), continue 1.5 miles and then turn right (northeast) on Schultz Pass Road (FR 420). Follow this paved road 0.7 mile, turning left (north) at the fork in the road. Continue north for 3.9 miles to a small parking area on the right (south) side of Schultz Pass Road. The AZT can be found on the north side of Schultz Pass Road across from the parking area.

Trail Route Description:  The trail heads north, goes under some railroad tracks and heads west. It follows Wildcat Canyon and after several junctions and a gate, the trail reaches FR 510. From here it works its way north and west, and across a large open area. After reaching a road it follows it due west for a short distance and then continues northwest up to the Rio de Flag and a bridged crossing. Climbing out of this drainage the trail crosses numerous 2-track roads and then goes under Highway 89. A turn to the northeast and it reaches the junction to the Sandy Seep Trailhead. The route now follows the Sandy Seep Trail, connects with the Little Elden Trail, climbs up and around Little Elden Mountain and then reaches Schultz Pass Road and the Schultz Pass Trailhead.

Difficulty:  Moderate

Season(s):  Spring, Summer and Fall (current weather forecast)

Water:  There are no reliable water sources on this passage. Water can sometimes be found in some of the drainages the trail crosses and there is water in the city of Flagstaff.


  • All water along this passage should be purified prior to use.
  • The water in the Rio de Flag is contaminated and should not be used.

Hikers on Mt Elden Trail Resources:

  • USGS Topographic Maps: Winona, Flagstaff East, Sunset Crater West and Humphreys Peak.
  • Coconino National Forest - Visitors Guide.
  • Coconino National Forest - Recreational Opportunity Guide.
  • Coconino National Forest map.
  • BLM Information Center maps.

For more information, contact:

Current Trail Information:

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