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Bear Mountain – Did We Conquer It? Bear-ly!

Peak Summited2022 Bear Mountain (AZ)
Type of HikeDay hike
TrailheadBear Mountain Trailhead
EncounteredWildflowers blooming
Hiking CompanionsHiked with a group
Road ConditionsRoad suitable for all vehicles
Bug StatusBugs were not too bad
Snow ConditionsSnow free
Trail ConditionsTrail in good condition

Listed as the first hike of the Summer Six-Pack of Peaks challenge, Bear Mountain has to be pretty easy right?? For my myself, my boyfriend, and Dad that joined, we were greatly humbled by the challenge that is Bear Mountain in the beautiful Sedona, AZ. We decided to tackle the trail on a Sunday morning, around 8:30 am (May 15th) while the weather was still somewhat cool and traffic was relatively low. The trail was marked fairly well and the path was pretty easy to follow, with white marks spread out along the way to keep you on track.  The beginning of the trail starts calm, with a nice walk through a field of wildflowers, but after that it's a climb! With an elevation gain of about 2,000 ft in 2.5 miles, this hike will have your entire lower body burning and the sweat will be rolling. The trail has a mixture of boulders, gravel, and smooth rock, so it is a good idea to have solid hiking shoes with some grip to them. When I tell you this trail is hard, it's hard! There are maybe a couple areas of relatively “flat” sections of the hike, but otherwise it is a steep and strenuous journey. Our ascent up the mountain had very minimal shade, while he descent had almost none. As someone who was used to hiking in cooler temperatures during the winter and spring months in the valley, this had a large impact in how I felt during the hike.  I was thankful to have brought lots of water and worn the appropriate clothing. Difficulties aside, the views from this hike are unbeatable and some of the best that Sedona has to offer! There are multiple “false summits” along the way that provide amazing view of the red rocks from different angles and they all make for great pictures and videos. The summit itself, at about 6,500 ft. offers some of the highest viewpoints in Sedona and there are a couple of areas of shade under trees to enjoy a snack, take a break, and soak in the moment. Don't forget to take a picture with the “End Trail” sign! As the first hike of this challenge, I am looking forward some more amazing hikes and it can only get better from here!

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