Arizona Hiking Gallery
Groom Creek Loop Trail Hike
Prescott National Forest, Prescott, AZ
June 23, 2007
Gallery contains 25 photos
Gallery last updated: 7/1/2007
This is an approximately 9 mile clockwise hike on the Groom Creek Loop Trail (Trail #307). The trail starts a few miles south of Prescott and climbs through oak, juniper, ponderosa, white fir, and douglas fir forests to the top Spruce Mountain where there is a small picnic area and a fire lookout tower.
A shady granite boulder outcropping along the Groom Creek Loop Trail.
The lower sections of the trail are forested with oak, juniper and ponderosa. Here is the trunk of an Arizona White Oak (Quercus arizonica). The Arizona White Oak is problably the largest species of oak to grow in Arizona.
Closeup of the bark of the Arizona White Oak.
Arizona White Oak (Quercus arizonica).
At times the trail crosses a slash in the forest where powerlines make their way up the mountain.
Dry grasses glow in the sunlight on a hillside clearing.
the trail passes a large Alligator Juniper (Juniperus deppeana), the largest species of juniper in Arizona. It is easily identified by its alligator skin like bark.
The Groom Creek Loop Trail climbing through the forest.
We will be following the Groom Creek Loop Trail up to the Spruce Mountain Lookout.
White Fir (Abies concolor) grows on the upper sections of Spruce Mountain. Spruce Mountain was named by early arrivals who misidentified the white fir as blue spruce.
Closeup of the White Fir needles.
Leaves of the Arizona White Oak (Quercus arizonica).
The Groom Creek Trail still climbing through the forest toward Spruce Mountain.
Wonderful contrasting large trunks of Ponderosa Pine (Pinus ponderosa) on the left and Alligator Juniper (Juniperus deppeana) on the right.
A clump of dry grass soaking up the rays of a small patch of sunshine reaching the forest floor.
Gambel Oak (Quercus gambelii) is easily recognized by its deeply lobed leaves.
Common Mullein (Verbascum thapsus) soon to be sporting a tip of yellow flowers.
The Groom Creek Loop Trail winding through the forest.
This and the next three photos are a panorama from atop Spruce Mountain.
Panorama from atop Spruce Mountain. On the right is Granite Mountain.
Panorama from atop Spruce Mountain with Granite Mountain at center.
Panorama from atop Spruce Mountain looking over Prescott Valley.
Zooming in on Upper Goldwater Lake from atop Spruce Mountain.
Zooming in on Lynx Lake from atop Spruce Mountain.
Spruce Mountain Fire Lookout was built in 1936 and is still in use today. The lookout is listed in the National Historic Lookout Register.
All images Copyright ©2007 Terry Wright. All rights reserved.