Munds Wagon Trail
Contributed by ranchez
This is a scenic trail connecting Schnebly Hill Trail to the Margs Draw and Huckaby Trails. It is well-marked, mostly moderate in grade and offering occasional shade from Arizona cypress over its entire length. It may be hiked one-way with arranged transportation and, hiked east to west, as described here would be rated moderate.
Beginning from the East Trailhead, the trail descends moderately to the south and levels out as it partially circles the base of Merry-Go-Round Rock with spectacular views west down Bear Wallow Canyon toward Sedona and south to Munds Mountain. It then resumes its descent and bends to the west, crossing a switchback of Schnebly Hill Road twice with good views of Mitten Ridge on the right (north). Now, the trail drops into Bear Wallow Wash and follows in or beside the drainage for a considerable distance. The trail then climbs out of the wash, crosses a low ridge and another wash and then climbs moderately. Now, high above the canyon floor, there are great views back to the Mogollon Rim and of nearby red rock formations at the west end of Mitten Ridge to the right.
The trail continues west and crosses the road twice on a high area overlooking Uptown Sedona and many of the area formations. After a brief descent and climb, the trail ends at 4.0 miles at the West Trailhead at the parking area for the Margs Draw and Huckaby trailheads just off Schnebly Hill Road. It is possible to take shorter hikes on portions of the trail utilizing the various mid-trail access points, one at Merry-Go-Round and others where the trail intersects or passes next to Schnebly Hill Road. Road crossings are marked with basket cairns.
This historic trail follows one of the first and most popular cattle trails out of the Sedona area. Upgrading of the trail began in 1896, but its completion as a wagon trail awaited the work of pioneer J.J. Thompson, funded by Coconino County, in 1902. It was known as the Munds Road and later as the Schnebly Hill Road.
West Trailhead (recommended for first-timers): From the junction of Routes 89A and 179, take 179 south 0.3 miles. Turn left on Schnebly Hill Road just across the Oak Creek Bridge and go .08 miles to the Huckaby/Margs Draw Trails parking area on the left. West to east is rated "strenuous".
East Trailhead: Requires a high clearance vehicle due to the rough road but allows an easy, one-way, downhill hike with arranged transportation. From the junction of Routes 89A and 179, take 179 south .3 miles. Turn left on Schnebly Hill Road just past the Oak Creek bridge. Go 5 miles (.6 miles beyound the winter closure gate) to turnout on the left. Walk 100 yards down the road to the signed trailhead on the west side. From East to west rated "moderate" or "easy".
Length: 4 miles |
Activies: Mountain Biking, Equestrian, Day Hiking, Backpacking
Trailhead Elevation: 4,400
Trailhead Waypoint: 34.881076 N -111.709788 W
Permit Info: Unknown 928-282-4119
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