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Apache Trail & Canyon Lake

Overview: The Apache Trail is scenic, winding, fun to drive or ride, plus Canyon Lake is a great place to picnic, fish, lounge or have lunch at the restaurant. Route: Take US 60 east to Idaho Rd. Take Idaho Rd. north to SR 88 - The Apache Trail. Take the "Trail" 15 miles to Canyon Lake.
Ride: Great day ride. From Idaho Rd. & US 60, an easy 30 minute ride to Canyon Lake.
Niceties: Gas, food and more all along the way.
Scenery: Very scenic Apache Trail, Superstition Wilderness and Canyon Lake.
Season: Year-round, but best October to May, or early summer mornings.

Roosevelt Lake Ride

Route: From Mesa, take SR 87 to the junction with SR 188, the Roosevelt Lake turnoff. Take SR 188 through Punkin Center (there is a cafe in this small town) to Roosevelt Lake, check out the scenery, the bridge and new dam. Do not take the Apache Trail SR 88, a long dirt and gravel road. Remain on 188 to the junction with SR 88, the road to Globe (gas, food and more). From Globe take US 60 west and return to the Valley.
Miles: 228
Ride: A good day ride, roughly 8 hours depending on stops.
Camping: Roosevelt Lake
Scenery: Scenic SR 87, the Mazatzals, Mount Ord, Roosevelt Lake, Four Peaks, then the Mayan-like rock formations between Miami and Superior.
Highlights: Following a wet winter, you’ll behold a desert like you have never seen before.
Season: Year-round, excruciating in summer midday sun, but ride early and visit Roosevelt Lake.

Salt River Canyon Springerville Loop

Route: From Phoenix, take US 60 to Globe, then north to Salt River Canyon and Show Low. Loops: 60-260 through Springerville, or 260-73 loop through Hon Dah and Fort Apache, then return to Phoenix via US 60.
Miles: 171 miles, Phoenix to Show Low. 6 hrs., oneway.
Ride: Weekend ride. Excellent ride; many great sights and stops along the way.
Camping: Fool Hollow Lake
Scenery: Very scenic Salt River Canyon and White Mountains.
Niceties: Hon Dah Resort Casino and much more. Visit chamber of commerce sites below.
Season: April - Nov.

Show Low Loop

Route: From Phoenix, take SR 87 to Payson; go west on SR 260 to Show Low, returning south on US 60 to Phoenix.
Miles: 300-plus-miles loop. Take rain gear, unpredictable summer monsoons.
Ride: Weekend ride. Excellent ride; many great sights and stops along the way.
Camping: Fool Hollow Lake
Scenery: The Mogollon Rim, White Mountains, and gorgeous Salt River Canyon.
Niceties: All you'll need in Payson, Show Low and Globe. Visit chamber of commerce sites below.
Season: April - Oct.

Strawberry Ride

Route: From Phoenix, take SR 87 north to Payson, Pine and then Strawberry. Take a ride up the Mogollon Rim if you like.
Miles: 200-plus-mile loop. Take rain gear, sudden summer afternoon storms.
Ride: Day ride. Phoenix to Payson, Pine, then Strawberry at the foot of the Mogollon Rim.
Camping: Houston Mesa Campground
Scenery: Fantastic mountain ride featuring the Mogollon Rim country.
Niceties: Payson has it all; Walmart to Holiday Inn; Pine & Strawberry; gas, food, lodging at the Strawberry Lodge.
Season: Year-round, but check winter road conditions.

Summerhaven Ride 

Overview: Experience all four seasons in a single day, as you ride up the Sky Island Scenic Byway, a k a The Catalina Highway. It is 35 miles of great riding and amazing scenery. There are numerous campgrounds and picnic areas along the way.
Route: Take I-10 south to Grant Rd., go east to Wilmot, turn left and follow signs to the Catalina Hwy.
Miles: 4 - 5 hours to Tucson. 117 miles to Tucson.
Ride: Good 2- 3-day ride. See some of the sites including Colossal Cave, San Xavier del Bac, Old Tucson Studios, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Tucson Botanical Gardens and Saguaro National Park West.
Camping: Coronado National Forest Campgrounds
Niceties: In Summerhave, there are a few restaurants, rental cabins and B&Bs, plus a general store. There is no gas station, fuel-up in Tucson.
Season: May - Sept.

Vulture Mine

History: In 1863 gold was discovered here. Allegedly, this is the spot where Henry Wickenburg bent over to pick up a vulture he had dispatched with his rife, laying next to the dead bird were nuggets of gold. The rest is Arizona mining history.
Route: Take I-17 north to Carefree Highway (SR 74). Take SR 74 west to Morristown and US 60, take US 60 west to Wickenburg. Continue west on US 60 through Wickenburg to Vulture Mine Road. Turn left at Vulture Mine Rd. and go 12 mile to the Vulture Mine.
Miles: 136 miles, about 6 hours.
Ride: Day ride.
Niceties: Wickenburg has it all; gas, food and lodging. Some like stopping for breakfast at the Gold Nugget restaurant on Wickenburg Way.
Season: Year-round, but best October to May.

Wickenburg Cottonwood Ride

Route: From Phoenix, take US 60 north, past Wickenburg to US 89. Take US 89 to Prescott, then 89A through Jerome to Cottonwood. Take SR 260 east to Camp Verde and I-17, return to Phoenix.
Ride: Good full day ride.
Camping: Prescott NF Campgrounds or Dead Horse Ranch State Park
Niceties: Gas, food and more in Wickenburg, Prescott, Jerome, Cottonwood and Camp Verde.
Scenery: All your eyes can handle, from low desert to tall pines.
Season: Year-round, but hot in summer until Yarnell Hill.

 

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