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The Wind Loop: Parhelic Circle Trail Races

Intermediate
 5.0 (1) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A smooth, scenic, high-elevation, soft surface trail loop running on a mix of singletrack and doubletrack.


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Map Key

7.1

Miles

11.4

KM

98%

Runnable

8,324' 2,537 m

High

7,981' 2,433 m

Low

524' 160 m

Up

525' 160 m

Down

3%

Avg Grade (2°)

9%

Max Grade (5°)

Dogs Unknown

Features Fall Colors · Spring · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

The course and trails are open and free to use April to November 10th. The winter season shifts to fee-based access to groomed cross country ski and snowshoe trails managed by the Arizona Nordic Village. Dogs are welcome on the trails in general but not during the race itself.

Overview

Views of Kendrick Peak and peaceful aspen groves are the highlights of this loop, which serves as one of two loops for the new Parhelic Circle Trail Runs. The trails are very runnable and some of the softest surface running you can do. Excellent high-elevation running and training! See sundogrunning.com/parhelic-… for more details on the race, July 27, 2019.

Need to Know

The lodge has some snacks and drinks for sale along with public restrooms, and there are portable toilets in the parking lot.

Description

The route follows signed Arizona Nordic Village trails that are used for cross country skiing and snowshoeing in the winter. This route starts from behind the Lodge on Cinder Trail (singletrack) for less than a mile to a left onto Babbitt Trail (two track/dirt road), and a quick left in an open meadow onto Thunder Trail.

Continue on Thunder past intersections for Snowflake, El Nino, Tornado until the junction with Wind Trail—turn left off of Thunder onto Wind. Continue on Wind past the junction with Lightning. The trail will start to enter an open meadow where the obvious dirt road continues straight, but you need to turn right to follow the marked ski trail (look for orange squares on trees).

The trail can be difficult to follow in the meadow grasses here, but head east following markers on trees until you intersect with a dirt road (FR 151E). Follow this road (still the Wind Trail but merges with Thunder again) back to the intersection with Babbitt Trail.

Turn right onto Babbitt (West) to run down approximately a mile to a large meadow with two large yurts. Just below the yurts, you'll turn left to follow Coyote Trail downhill, continuing on the dirt road until it's intersection with Babbitt again—turn left and run it home to the Lodge.

Flora & Fauna

Ponderosa pine, aspen, mule deer, elk, black bear, prairie dogs, and lots of wildflowers in the summer!

History & Background

The Arizona Nordic Village, formerly the Flagstaff Nordic Center, has been in operation as a cross country ski area since 1984. Currently owned and operated by Babbitt Ranches, it offers year-round camping in yurts, cabins, and RV/car camping sites. Trails are open and free to access through the summer season, and trail passes are sold for winter access when the trails are groomed.

Contacts

Shared By:

Evan Reimondo

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 1 vote

#1664

Overall
  5.0 from 1 vote
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Recommended Route Rankings

#76

in Arizona

#1,664

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223 Since May 10, 2019
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Photos

The upper portion of Wind Trail along an aspen elk exclosure.
May 29, 2019 near Parks, AZ

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