The Granite Mountain Hotshots Trail (Hotshots Trail) formed to memorialize the 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots who perished in June 2013 while fighting the Yarnell Hill Fire in Yarnell, Arizona.
Efforts between individuals in the communities of Yarnell and Prescott, as well as family members, culminated in the creation of the trail and Granite Mountain Hotshots Memorial State Park.
The trail's entrance is located just south of Yarnell on Highway 89. It spans seven miles roundtrip and is one-way.
The trail goes through the Weaver Mountains and features an observation deck where individuals can leave items for the hotshots at the Tribute Wall. From the observation deck to the trail’s memorial circle is ¾’s of a mile. At the memorial circle are 19 gabions or baskets representing those lost. Memorial plaques featuring the names and faces of each hotshot can also be found along the trail.
It is possible to access the trail all year.
*It is rated as moderate. There is also noted to be little to no shade in this area, and it is recommended that visitors dress accordingly (appropriate shoes, etc.). It is estimated to be AT LEAST a four-hour hike (roundtrip).
NOTE: Parking space proximate to the Granite Mountain Hotshots trail is limited. However, a shuttle is noted to deliver visitors to the trailhead.
The story behind the Granite Mountain Hotshots Trail
The Granite Mountain Hotshots Trail commemorates the site where 19 of the 20 Granite Mountain Hotshots were overtaken by the Yarnell Hill Fire while valiantly trying to protect the area.
The fire started with lightning on June 28, 2013 and overtook the men in a box canyon two days later on June 30, 2013.
Those 19 men were Eric Marsh, Jesse Steed, Clayton Whitted, Robert Caldwell, Travis Carter, Travis Turbyfill, Chris Mackenzie, Andrew Ashcraft, Joe Thurston, Wade Parker, Anthony Rose, Garret Zuppiger, Scott Norris, Dustin DeFord, William Warneke, Kevin Woyjeck, John Percin, Grant McKee, Sean Misner, and Brendan McDonough (survivor).