Lockett Meadow: Inner Basin Loop

Flagstaff

A classic hike from the Lockett Meadow Campground perfect for anyone in the family.

Hiking Moderate

Distance
5.7 km
Ascent
265 m
Descent
265 m
Duration
1-2 hrs
Low Point
2.6 km
High Point
2.9 km
Gradient
Lockett Meadow: Inner Basin Loop Map

The Inner Basin Loop is a prime family-friendly hike from Lockett Meadow Campground that showcases the area's volcanic origins and "cataclysmic heritage," the USFS notes. Just over 3.5-miles, this circuit tours a shadowy forest and a unique ecosystem dominated by pine and aspen, which is especially beautiful as the aspens transition to gold in the early fall. Signs of the ancient lava flow are also evident throughout the basin, offering a unique - yet popular - destination to enjoy a hike near Flagstaff.

Description

Along this hike, one could expect to see wildlife ranging from porcupine to elk, plus the occasional black bear. According to the USFS, "black bears have been known to stroll right through groups of picnickers without so much as a glance at their lunches," though carrying bear spray in the backcountry is still good practice. Stands of aspen and hillsides covered in wildflowers only accentuate this beautiful hike. Cross-country skiers can also enjoy this area as late as June, so plan your visit accordingly with the weather.

This hike begins at the Lockett Meadow Campground, a primitive campground with spectacular views of the San Francisco Peaks. It is generally open between the spring and October and requires a day-use fee to park, even for hikers. Sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis for a fee of just $18 per night. Unlike other more developed areas, there are no electric hookups, no drinking water, and only vault toilets to service the campground.

Sources: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/coconino/recarea/?recid=55110

Difficulty

Moderate

Hiking along trails with some uneven terrain and small hills. Small rocks and roots may be present.

Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.

Remoteness

2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

May, June, July, August, September, October

Features

  • Wildlife
  • Picturesque
  • Dog friendly
  • Wild flowers
  • Water features
  • Family friendly
  • Forestry or heavy vegetation

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area