Arizona Trail, Day 18: Passage 35, Babbitt Ranch (Trans-Arizona/Utah Hike Day 24)

Well, I’ve officially found my least favorite part of the trail so far. The first 5 miles today from Moqui Stage Station to the border of the Kaibab National Forest are nice…and then the views disappear and a long roadwalk down a valley begins where one crosses into the Babbit Ranch Passage (Passage 35). The views disappear until after Upper Lockwood Tank. From there it gets marginally better with nice views of the Peaks returning, but with a full moon I choose to hike a few extra hours at night to cut down on tomorrow’s distance on this passage. I meet Coyote, another sobo thru-hiker, on the trail twice today, first just after breakfast and again and he tells me about seeing some coyotes and a mountain lion fight over an elk that he saw that morning. Very cool wildlife encounter, maybe I’ll get to see something like that?

The Arizona Trail heads through the pinyon-juniper forest of the Coconino Plateau, Kaibab National Forest, on Arizona Trail Passage 35, Babbitt Ranch
The Arizona Trail heads through the pinyon-juniper forest of the Coconino Plateau, Kaibab National Forest, on Arizona Trail Passage 35, Babbitt Ranch
The San Francisco Peaks rise above the pinyon-juniper woodland of the Coconino Plateau, Kaibab National Forest, Arizona Trail Passage 35 (Babbitt Ranch)
The San Francisco Peaks rise above the pinyon-juniper woodland of the Coconino Plateau in the Kaibab National Forest, Arizona Trail Passage 35 (Babbitt Ranch)
Juniper beside the Arizona Trail in the Kaibab National Forest on Passage 35 (Babbitt Ranch)
The Arizona Trail exits the Kaibab National Forest. Arizona Trail Passage 35, Babbitt Ranch.
Entering Babbitt Ranch after exiting the Kaibab National Forest, Arizona Trail Passage 35
The Arizona Trail passes through rabbitbrush meadows heading south on Passage 35 (Babbitt Ranch)
The San Francisco Peaks and San Francisco Volcanic Field rise out of the Colorado Plateau among pinyon-juniper woods and rice grass meadows. Arizona Trail Passage 35 (Babbitt Ranch)
The San Francisco Peaks rise out of the Colorado Plateau among pinyon-juniper woods and rice grass meadows. Arizona Trail Passage 35 (Babbitt Ranch)
Hills of the San Francisco Volcanic Field rise out of the Colorado Plateau among pinyon-juniper woods and rice grass/rabbitbrush meadows. Arizona Trail Passage 35 (Babbitt Ranch).
The San Francisco Peaks and the hills and mountains of the San Francisco Volcanic Field rise out of the Colorado Plateau among pinyon-juniper woods and rice grass/rabbitbrush meadows. Arizona Trail Passage 35 (Babbitt Ranch).
The San Francisco Peaks and the hills and mountains of the San Francisco Volcanic Field rise out of the Colorado Plateau among pinyon-juniper woods and rice grass/rabbitbrush meadows. Arizona Trail Passage 35 (Babbitt Ranch).
The San Francisco Peaks (center) and the hills and mountains of the San Francisco Volcanic Field, such as Kendrick Peak (right), rise out of the Colorado Plateau among pinyon-juniper woods and rice grass/rabbitbrush meadows. Arizona Trail Passage 35 (Babbitt Ranch).

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