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Sterling Pass Trail Professional Review and Guide
"A less-used trail below the impressive cliffs on the north face of Wilson Mountain, in the Red Rock–Secret Mountain Wilderness."
--Bruce Grubbs, Hiking Northern Arizona (Falcon Guides).
This is a beautiful hike which is great exercise. It is a good elevation gain on the first mile or so. The veiws looking back over the canyon are breath taking. Once at the top you descend down through trees to the red rock country. Continue on to Vultee Arch for a spectacular hike. August can get fairly hot even in Northern Arizona so I suggest getting on the trail by 8:00am. Depending on how much you stop and take photos you can probably do the hike to Vultee arch and back in about 3 hours.
Sterling Pass is a very senic hike. Great views North Wilson Mountain and the surrounding terrain. The elevation climb is about 1100 ft., and there is the option to continue the hike about another 3/4 mile to the Vultee Arch. Definately worth the extra time to make that trip. If you add the Vultee Arch side trip your total rountrip milage is about 4.8 miles, and the total elevation change is about 1600ft. Best time to hike is late October or early November to see the full chaing of color of the leaves on the hike.
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