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    Sunset Trail South to North

    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    22.4 km
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    1,325 m
    User Ratings
    These ratings are completed by users who have completed this trail and not subject to reviews by 10Adventures.
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    Directions to Trailhead

    The Sunset Trail South to North covers the whole length of one of the main routes that travels up and over Elden Mountain and its surrounding peaks. This route is challenging, but if you can get a car shuttle arranged, you can hike it as a point-to-point route instead. You’ll find that the beginning is the most demanding, then you’ll be cruising with incredible views as you go. Expect moderate traffic on this route.

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    Route Description for Sunset Trail South to North

    The Sunset Trail climbs up Elden Mountain and along the ridge to Little Elden Mountain, dropping off the mountains with spectacular views of the San Francisco Peaks, Flagstaff, Sunset Crater, and more. This hike is challenging at the start as you battle up Elden, but it does even out after the stiff start. This isn’t the best fit for families or beginners. Bring lots of water.

    The first 4.0 km of the route take you up Elden Lookout Trail. You’ll switchback your way up the steep face. Take breaks if you need to. Once you crest Elden Mountain, you can either make the 0.3 km side trip to the summit or continue straight along the trail to the ridge.

    Cross the saddle between Elden and Little Elden. At the fork, go left towards Schultz Tank. As you descend you'll have some awesome views down to the tank, at which point you’ll turn around and retrace your steps. If you have poles, it’ll make the descent off Elden Mountain quite a bit easier.

    Getting to the Sunset Trail South to North Trailhead

    The trailhead for the Sunset Trail South to North is off US-89.

    Route Information

    • Backcountry Campground


    • When to do


    • Pets allowed

      Yes - On Leash

    • Family friendly


    • Route Signage


    • Crowd Levels


    • Route Type

      Out and back

    Sunset Trail South to North Elevation Graph

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    Sunset Trail South to North Reviews

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