We are off to hike the Arizona Trail

The boundary of the United States and Mexico at the southern terminus of the Arizona Trail.

On Sunday we started hiking the 800 mile Arizona Trail. Our plans are to spend the next two months walking across Arizona.

The Arizona Trail begins at the Mexican border south of the Arizona town of Sierra Vista. There is no road access to the start of the Arizona Trail so you have to hike in either 2.4 miles from the Coronado National Monument visitor center on the Joe’s Canyon Trail or drive on a dirt road to the Montezuma Pass Trailhead and backtrack 1.9 miles to the Mexican border.

We decided to take the Joe’s Canyon trail from the visitor’s center, but in hindsight it probably would have been better to use the Montezuma Pass Trailhead. Joe’s Canyon was a lovely hike but involved a 1,300 foot climb. Then the Arizona Trail climbs 3,200 feet in the first 6.4 miles.

After about 4,100 feet of climbing for the day and just under six miles of official Arizona Trail miles we were pretty tuckered out when we spotted a campsite where we spent our first chilly windy night.

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