Elden Lookout Trail

HARD 246 reviews
#1 of 7 trails in

Elden Lookout Trail is a 4.7 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Flagstaff, Arizona that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
4.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2,391 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

Directions from Flagstaff: Follow Santa Fe Avenue past the entrance to the Flagstaff Mall and the Peaks Ranger District Office to a trailhead parking lot just off the north side of the street.

hiking
7 days ago

Drove up to hike for a day trip from the Phx area. This was a beautiful hike, full of switchbacks & some beautiful views. Lots of small lizards along the way & variety of trees. The area is still recovering (and will be for a long time) from the 1977 Radio Fire - but don't let this deter you, the hike is so beautiful.

Parking was free at the base, about 25-30 spaces. I arrived around 8/8:15 a.m. and it was about half full on a Friday. Hiked the Fatman's loop to the Elden Lookout trailhead. Some areas are steep and I would agree with the 'hard' rating.

Views at the top are great, climb the radio tower if it's open (worth it!). Shared a few photos for views on the way up/ down. I would recommend hiking shoes/ tennies if you have them, on the way down there were a few loose rocks (but nothing you can't handle!).

hiking
20 days ago

Great trail that is very well maintained. Winds through a few different tree types! Awesome views for a payoff. Pretty steep but nothing crazy.

21 days ago

We explored this trail while out from Michigan...WOW! Elevation was a surprise and it is a challenging and technical hike with rocks and roots (at least for us!) but worth every step, grab, and grunt! Coming back down easier of course but technical in a different way with some loose stone. We did the Overlook once and Fatman’s twice...a don’t miss set of trails and plenty more we didn’t get to all right there! Thanks Arizona!!

25 days ago

Beautiful hike and with climbing 2600 ft in 2 miles it’s a good effort. It is difficult but not as challenging as Camelback nor as technical as Flat Iron (both in the valley)! Don’t let some of the reviews scare you away!!

1 month ago

awesome workout with incredible views

1 month ago

This trail is an amazing workout. You start out in pinon/juniper and then steadily climb up to ponderosa pines, firs, and lots of aspen trees at the top! It’s a tough hike but one of my favorites.

hiking
1 month ago

I’m a big guy sadly took me 5 hours to get to the top and 3 hours to get down. I went while it was raining but the view is amazing but coming down just dragged

1 month ago

Closed as of 7/1/18.

2 months ago

One of few more challenging hikes in the Flagstaff area, Mount Elden trail is designed in a way that makes the mountain as brutal as possible to go up. What could have been done in a mile and a half or so, takes 2.5 miles to ascend. You'll likely notice the unnecessary switchbacks and lengthened trail around the side of the mountain that makes it feel like you're expending all this energy to go nowhere. I've done this hike several times and will do it again, but every time I do it I'm frustrated with the design of the trail. not a very good trail at all, but a decent hike nonetheless.

2 months ago

Have hiked it several times, a good hike . A good time .

hiking
2 months ago

The lack of oxygen pushes you to take it easy on the way up, step by step and breathing as if you were on a treadmill. Unless you are a Flagstaff resident and are used to the less oxygen atmosphere. The views are definitely breathtaking for sure. Go light but take water and some snacks. When you reach the summit you will be ready to eat some carbs.

hiking
3 months ago

This 2500ft incline hike will test your stamina for sure. Be careful as the trail seems to have been washed out in a few places higher up. This hike has what I call a grand staircase feature which is pretty cool. Unbelievable views at the top when you reach the towers. This hike took me just under 3 hours to complete, rests included. Passed by many other hikers on this trail as it is popular due to how close the trailhead is to Flagstaff. I recommend trekking poles for the descent, especially if you have bad ankles and knees like me.

hiking
3 months ago

Felt pretty decent until the mountain greeted us. Steep and semi technical but very enjoyable. Hard is accurate but there is plenty of area to throttle down and rest.

hiking
4 months ago

We hiked it last week, we were visiting and not used to the higher elevation so we huffed and puffed a bit on this one despite being fit runners. Our dogs accompanied us on the hike and enjoyed it as well. A little snow and wind at the top but a beautiful view of the city! We went at 9am on a Wednesday and pretty much had the trial to ourselves.

4 months ago

So beautiful! Worth every step up and every time I fell down.

4 months ago

Pretty great hike. We had been told it was a good training hike and found it to be a nice Sunday morning workout. We went at 7 am to avoid a lot of foot traffic and were the only people on the trail aside from one other until the end of our hike. It took us 3 hours. Some snow and wind at the top, but well worth it.

6 months ago

was a lot of fun in the snow. :)

hiking
6 months ago

one of my favorite hikes. it's in town which makes it perfect for before/after work hikes in the summer when days are longer. definitely harder than mt. humphrys in my opinion. short and steep--it's like climbing stairs but skipping every other step. highly recommend for a good work out to take it fast, or a good slow challenge!

Fun afternoon climb. Took 3 of us almost 3 hours to do with multiple rest stops and a break at the top. Be sure to walk all the way around the top to get views from all angles!

hiking
7 months ago

Combined Fatmans loop with Elden Lookout. Took a slightly out of shape flatlander 6 hours to do it all. A lot of elevation gain on the trail up to the lookout tower makes it a workout. Trail is maintained and well established. The trail isn't particularly technical, it's just the elevation gain that makes it "hard."

7 months ago

Feels a lot longer than 5.2 mile out and back.

hiking
8 months ago

great hike to get into shape

hiking
8 months ago

Hiked the trail with my Daughter and her dog, Wilbur. We started the trail at the Fatmans loop trailhead. My wife continued Fatmans loop while my daughter and I continued with Eldons lookout.
The trail systems where very crowded mostly hiking the Fatmans loop trail. The Eldons trail is made up of loose dirt over hard packed dirt and rock, rock outcropping and just plain rock. The path was up the entire way, elevation climb is 2290 feet. My daughters dog had no issues up or down the trail. I, on the other hand, was doing the trail slow but enjoyed myself. The views where great at the top as long as your back is turned away from the antennas. Great trail.

hiking
9 months ago

It was a steep trial, & is defined tiring
But I️ had a great time

hiking
9 months ago

hiking
9 months ago

Wish the view at the top didn’t have big satellites and buildings.. but still great!

9 months ago

Good trail for elevation training!

10 months ago

Nice trail.

10 months ago

Great day hike with beautiful views!

hiking
11 months ago

Unbelievable hike! Definitely the hardest single-day hike I've ever done, but well worth it. Bring plenty of water, as shade is quite minimal.

Load More