Humphreys Peak

Flagstaff

Tackle this challenging sub-10-mile trail run to the highest peak in Arizona.

Trail Running Difficult

Distance
15 km
Ascent
1 km
Descent
1 km
Duration
2-3 hrs
Low Point
2.8 km
High Point
3.8 km
Gradient
13˚
Humphreys Peak Map

Humphreys Peak is the grandstand of the San Francisco Peaks, a dormant volcanic range nestled north of Flagstaff and south of the Grand Canyon. As the highest peak in Arizona, trail runners, hikers, and backpackers flock to the Arizona Snowbowl each summer to test their stamina and see if they can reach the highest natural point in the state. Just shy of 10 miles, reaching the 12,637-foot summit is no easy feat, yet it's not uncommon to see local runners coasting their way up to the top during the warmer months. With over 3,700 feet of climbing in just 4.8 miles, poles and technical trail shoes are a must for the climb, and your quads will be begging for a break by the time you get back to the bottom.

Description

Shown here is the traditional - and most direct - way to reach the top of Humphreys Peak. As of 2022, local endurance athlete, Jim Walmsley, held the climbing FKT (Fastest Known Time) to the summit with a staggering time of just 51:17. While he may be one of the most acclaimed distance trail runners in the world, the average trail runner would likely want to plan for at least 2 hours to reach the summit. Other popular variations of the route include a point-to-point, or an out-and-back, both beginning in Flagstaff and detailed at fastestknowntime.com.

Named after a Civil War general - turned Chief of Engineers at the US Army Corps of Engineers, this route begins at the northern end of the Snowbowl parking area between the Big and Little Spruce Lifts. The ski area is only open from November through Spring, so plan this run during the warmer months if possible. That said, bring plenty of water and know that there are no facilities open at the ski area during the summer months.

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HumphreysPeak

Difficulty

Difficult

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, November

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area