Mingus Mountain, Arizona-Near Sedona: camping, hiking and local amenities!

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I’m so thankful I accidentally found Mingus Mountain, Arizona. It wasn’t part of my plan. I headed over to California, and almost all nature was closed due to COVID-19. It was super stressful so I headed back to Arizona. It was hot at this point in the year so I needed to get up onto higher elevation and stumbled upon Mingus!

The drive up from both sides is AMAZING. I’ve talked about HWY 89A in other articles, this was the same HWY! It’s so stunning. It’s a two lane windy road with amazing views! 

Getting to The Free (and not free) Camp Sites!

To get to the BLM, you are going to turn onto forest road 104 directly off  89A (Between Prescott and Cottonwood). You follow it for about a mile and then turn right onto forest road 314! This whole road is loaded with spots! It’s shaded and protected from wind, and has cell phone service!

 If you go straight, instead of turning onto the second forest road, you will run into a developed camp groud! I believe it has showers and water. I was there during COVID-19 so it was all closed up!

Amenities Close By

Cottonwood is just down the hill and will have all the supplies you need (walmart, food, and more)! They even have an awesome water store where you can refill your jugs for super cheap! I drink distilled water, tap and bottled water have a lot of minerals that build up in our joints, it was only 50 cents a gallon there!

Dead Horse State Park also has showersand a dump/refill station for RV’s! It was $15 to dump (my friend had an RV) or $7 for a day pass to go in and shower. 

Sedona is also very close and has some amazing spots to stay in!

Follow me in Instagram for more of my in-the-moment adventures! @maggmountains

Enjoying Time on Mingus Mountain

Mingus Mountain is so beautiful! 

I highly recommend driving down from the top, into Jerome and down into Cottonwood. It is AMAZING! I took a time lapse video on my GoPro that I’m working on uploading (I’m new to video, I can email it easy until I have my Youtube channel going!).

There are a lot of hikes in the area, I didn’t get to any while I was up there (I was sick and also on my period so I slept in my hammock a lot lol). 

But I had the blessing of meeting two awesome older hippy gentlemen. They offered to cook for me almost every night and showed me so much kindness!

They were also the ones who told me to switch to distilled water for my joint pain. One of them had arthritis so bad that he was going to need surgery, he switched to distilled water and did physical therapy and ended up curing his arthritis and doesn’t have it at all anymore. I have noticed a huge difference in the first two months doing so! I have had neck pain for 10 years, and this is the first time I can feel something actually healing me. 

You can get distilled water at any grocery store or at Wal-Mart! It’s usually about $1 a gallon. You can order gallons online too! It looks more expensive on amazon but I found one vendor selling it at a good price! (For 6 gallons).

Distilled is just straight H20, it doesn’t have any added minerals. The added minerals can build up in our joints overtime, it’s important to flush them out with distilled water!

I just got this distilled water machine, it’ll save me a lot of money in the long run!

Distilled Water Purifier

I woke up at about 6am and made my morning tea with my Jet Boil. Sometimes I make coffee too, depends on my mood.

I typically use the instant coffee crystals! Or more french press attachment (see below) for my Jetboil. I just fill my Jet Boil up ¾ the way full, clip it to the burner and I have boiling water in about a minute! They also make attachments for pans that you can use as well! 

Jet Boil French Press Coffee/Tea

I also cooked a delicious meal (well a lot of meals, I was there for two weeks)with my Jetboil pan attachment! 

I seasoned and stuffed a chicken (recipes to come later), wrapped it in foil and cooked it on low in my Jetboil pan. It was SO GOOD.

I’m so thankful I stumbled upon this beautiful place. It was such a blessing during all of the chaos of the world! 

Feel free to email me with any personal questions! I love meeting and chatting with new people (I won’t send you any spam).

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Sedona, Arizona: Camping, BLM Land and Hiking Guide

arizona, camping, hiking

Arizona is an incredibly beautiful state. I appreciate it more and more each time I visit! This previous time… I stayed for 2 months. Ooops! I was there during the chaos of Covid-19, so it felt better for me to stay put for a while!

Sedona is one of the most beautiful places you can visit to hike and explore outdoors in the United States.

There’s a mix of Ponderosa Pine forest, red rock, desert and rivers!

Ponderosa Pine in Arizona

Follow me in Instagram for more of my in-the-moment adventures! @maggmountains

I found more than one stunning BLM (free land to camp) spots, tons of hiking trails, and lots of resources in the surrounding towns: Sedona, Cottonwood, and Prescott are the ones I frequented.

I also went on an amazing hike! A lot of trails were closed for COVID when I was there (they are open now), but I did find an awesome trail that was still open, I added it to the bottom here! You can use the AllTrails app to find some other others. I’ve heard Devil’s Bridge and Bear Mountain Trail are both lovely too.

Follow me in Instagram for more of my in-the-moment adventures! @maggmountains

Loy Butte/ Boynton Canyon Rd BLM: Free scenic camping near Sedona!

This was an UNREAL location to post up for a couple weeks. I was there in March so the weather was ideal. The mornings and evenings were cool, and the days were warm.

This BLM is located of highway 89A, which is one of my all time favorite highways to drive. If you are driving between Sedona and Cottonwood on 89A, you turn off on to Loy Butte road (there should only be one way to turn… turn right if you are coming from Sedona, and turn left off the highway if you are coming from Cottonwood.

Probably better than most men at chopping wood.

It’s a gravel road that connects all the way to the highway on the other side. There are spots all throughout this area you can stay for free! The further in you go, the more scenic it gets!

The road was fairly rough but it’s manageable. There were a good mix of big RV’s, tents and vans! Just be careful.

IPA’s are my favorite adult drink!

Hangout Out at the BLM/ Free Land to Camp On

** you can find other BLM spots to camp for free on the BLM (bureau of land management) website**

We were able to have fires at the time; I would double check before having one depending on the time of year! We cooked some feasts using a combination of cooking over the fire, which I usually use to cook my meats, and I use my Jet Boil for a lot of cooking!

In the mornings I would get up and start my day with hot coffee. It’s so nice to have hot coffee when you’re out in nature, I make it in under two minutes just by using my jet boil and instant coffee , I always get the organic kind. Coffee is one of those sneaky things that has a lot of chemicals.. I just clip my Jet boil cup to the burner; add water, light it and I have boiling water in about a minute. Not sure how I got by without it before!

There’s also a lot of attachments for the jet boil that make it easy to use in a variety of ways. I’ll never go back to using anything else. It’s so lightweight and easy to use. I even bring it on my super long hikes to make pick-me-up meals so that I have energy for the long trek back to the car.

Jet Boil French Press attachment, so handy!:

Jet Boil French Press Coffee/Tea

Click Here For this Amazing Hiking Near Sedona (in video below).

Follow me in Instagram for more of my in-the-moment adventures! @maggmountains

I drank 40oz of water on this hike, so important to stay hydrated. I love Camelbacks (they hold a lot of water) and I use them on super long hikes, but on 1-8 mile hikes, I typically just bring my Hydroflask since I prefer ice water. I have a 40oz Hydroflask and it keeps my ice water cold all day, no matter how hot out it is! (they have smaller and larger ones as well).

Boynton Canyon Hike, Arizona

Follow me in Instagram for more of my in-the-moment adventures! @maggmountains

Feel free to email me or message me on instagram with any questions! (no spam).

Stay safe and groovy!

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Arizona Hiking and Hot Springs: The Lone Palm on the Colorado

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This hike was very challenging but oh so worth it! This is one of those hikes where you really need to listen to the reviews on All Trails and be prepared!

There is hardly a trail to follow so it’s extremely easy to get off course once you’re fully into the trail (the start isn’t too bad). Make sure you track your hike with your all trail app so that you can tell if you are going the right way or not.

I got off trail SO many times and wouldn’t of made it if I couldn’t use my app to find my way back. I rarely track my hikes but I wouldn’t recommend this hike without doing it! It’s easy to do.

Make sure you start to record your while you have service. I had service at the parking lot of this trailhead so I started it there. It still works if you loose service AFTER you have started it.

In this article I will be going over do’s and don’ts for this confusing hike. I took pictures of the spots of where I went the wrong way so other people can avoid them. I’ll post them below!

Location

This hike is located inside the Lake Mead Nation Recreational area, which is about 30 minutes outside of Las Vegas, Nevada. This park is in both Nevada and Arizona; the hike is just over the boarder on the Arizona side, right off the main highway! It’s extremely easy to get to.

Coming from either way on HWY 93, you will take exit two onto Kingman Wash Access road. The trailhead is just off to the west side of the hwy, I would guess about .2 miles from the main HWY.

What to Bring

  • Water, WATER, and more water! I drank 140oz on this hike. The air is dry, the weather is hot and it’s a hard hike. Bring more than you normally would for a hike. Don’t let the 4 mile trek fool you into bringing less. Camel backs are great for hard hikes. If you don’t want to buy or use the camel back backpack, you can buy a bladder and secure it in your regular backpack and slip the hose through a small gap in the zipper. Click here for a bladder, they are very affordable.
  • Hiking shoes with good grip! The rocks are slippery. I have some badass keens, here are the ones I have… they have great traction and grip!
  • Snacks. I always bring snacks on every hike I do, you never know when you’re going to need an energy boosts. Snacks are great for this.
  • Swimsuit (optional)
  • Towel (optional)
  • Backpack for all your belongings. Keep your hands free incase you slip or fall!
The hotspring on the end here in warm, not hot but great for staying in for long periods of time, especially on a warm day!

The Adventure Up! (with my mistakes and tips)

Believe me when I say that this hike was a real doozy! Physically it’s doable but very confusing. Make sure you leave early so that you have plenty of sunlight for the hike back to your car.

I started this hike right away going the wrong way. I went right at the trailhead…. That leads to a cliff. Go left and follow it around in what looks to be like an old riverbed. I followed it right once I got to the split off.

I followed the riverbed for about 1.5-2 miles. I continued to follow it too far… went through this little canyon:

…. Which lead to this branch… which I then climbed down stupidly. DO NOT GO DOWN THE BRANCH. If you see the brand…. Probably about 15-20ft, you have gone the wrong way… but only by a little bit, don’t worry. I was able to find an easier way to get back where I went the wrong way.

View from the bottom of the tree I climbed down… don’t be like me lol.

Instead of turning right down this canyon, go straight up the gravel hill. It doesn’t look like much of a trail until you go up it a little. You’ll see some rock sharon’s (Those balanced rock towers) and you’ll know you are going the right way.

Go up and over that hill. Make sure you continually check your app to make sure you are going the right way… I checked mine every few minutes and still got off track. I can’t emphasize how important this is on this specific trail!

One of the only parts of the trail were it actually looks like a trail.

Keep following the rock sharon’s and the app until you see the Colorado River and the small stream going into it.

Once you get to the stream, you are going to walk along the stream until you find the two separate hot spring pools. One is further back away from the river and fits about two people, it’s hotter than the other.

The second one is all the way down at the end towards the Colorado. It’s bigger but more of a luke-warm, which is perfect temperature in this part of the country usually. It overlooks the river and turns into a waterfall where you rest your back. It was so amazingly beautiful.

There was people in it when I first got to it so I deicded to follow the little trail down to the river to see the Lone Palm up close. The trail down in this section has a ton of thorn bushes so be careful, I got a few minor cuts.

The Colorado river right here is a beautiful emerald color and super clear! I don’t think I have ever seen water in a river that looks this beautiful. Pretty places make me feel oh so jazzy!

I cracked an IPA and relaxed in the sunshine, swam a little and took some photos. 

After about an hour I headed back up to the bigger hot spring with the waterfall, the girls that were in it before had left so I hopped in! It was perfect temperature for relaxing for a long time on a 70-degree day.

I decided to go back the same way I came since I had such a hard time finding the trail. I was alone and didn’t want to get lost in the dark incase my phone died. I got lost way less on the way back but still got off track about 3-4 times. Look out for those rock sharon’s, they are super helpful if you are on the lookout for them. Build more if there are some confusing areas. I built a few more when I was on the hike!

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