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Fall’s Guardian LbNA #75011

Owner:Martini Man Contact Supporter
Plant date:Oct 2, 2020
Found by: JoySong
Last found: Oct 1, 2021
Hike distance:1 mi
Last edited:Oct 4, 2020
Last checked/found: 2-OCT-2020

This box was originally planted as a temporary box at the 2015 "Fall Into Fun" event in Illinois. It is now a permanent plant in Arizona.

Location: Take Highway 180 out of Flagstaff, then turn right on Snowbowl Road. Drive up approximately 5.3 miles to a trail parking lot on the left (as the road curves right). This is appropriately known as “Aspen Corner” and beautifully showcases Fall color.

Distance/Terrain: Just under 1 mile roundtrip. A fairly easy walk on sandy/dirt trail with about 150 feet of ascent/descent.

NOTE: You can combine the hunt for this box with the hunt for “Fall’s Bounty”. See the notes at the end of this clue.

Autumn is my favorite time of year. Where I came from in the Midwest, the foliage turns many colors from its original hue of green. Moving to the Southwest made me lower expectations. But I was wrong.

Park your car at the Aspen Corner parking area. After entering thru the opening in the fence walk to the beginning of the trails. We decided to forgo the more travelled route and took a trail at 290 degrees.

You first pass between some fallen giants before reaching the way down. The path is steep which demands some care in walking. But, in addition, there are a lot of downed trees which can be stepped over or, in some cases, climbed over. This only lasts for a quarter mile.

After bottoming out you will find yourself at mile mark 602.2 of the Arizona Trail. It winds its way north to your right. In front of you is an informal path that continues on for a short ways and then opens up on a wide expanse of grassland. Walk down this path to the open field and take in a grand view of the San Francisco Mountains.

Here you can find a memento to autumn. Walk to your left hugging the tree line. In fifteen steps you should see a V – tree on your left with a huge aspen log lying in front of it. Walk to them and cast your eyes about two or three feet to the left down the log. Inside you will find Fall’s Guardian.

From here you can go back the way you came. But you might want to consider taking the Arizona Trail north. In a short distance you will find a signed intersection with a more gentle way back to the lot on your right. This is the intersection referenced in the Fall’s Bounty clues.