travel and outdoors
For free monthly updates, event invitations and exclusive deals, sign-up for our newsletter!
May, 2011, Page 56
Photo by Mare Czinar
COCONINO NATIONAL FOREST
Unlike the name implies, turkeys and creeks are rare sights along this route. Yet for what this trail lacks in terms of running water and wild fowl it more than makes up for in beautiful scenery and interesting geology.
The trek starts out on a wide, closed road with numerous unmarked junctions and side paths. To stay on track, be sure to follow the piles of rocks wrapped in wire known as “basket cairns.” If you lose your way, just backtrack to the last cairn and spot the next one to correct your bearings. At about the 1.5-mile point, the trail passes Turkey Tank, a tiny cottonwood-ringed oasis. From here, the route begins its gradual climb along a juniper- and cypress-shaded path to the rim of House Mountain volcano.
On the way up, views of Red Rock country get progressively better with the pièce de résistance occurring on a scenic saddle where views of Sedona, Mingus Mountain and the gaping, eroded volcanic vent collide for an overwhelming carnival of visual delights.
: 7 miles roundtrip
: 4,000–5,100 feet
Distance from Phoenix
: 125 miles one way
: A Red Rock Pass is required; $5 daily fee per vehicle.
: From Phoenix, go north on Interstate 17 to the Sedona exit 298, located just north of Camp Verde. Turn left and follow State Route 179 to Verde Valley School Road, where the turnoff (part of a traffic circle) will be on the left past milepost 306 (note: the street sign is difficult to see when traveling north). Go west on Verde Valley School Road for 4 miles to Forest Road 9216B, where there’s a sign for Turkey Creek trailhead. From here, the road degrades from decent dirt to ruts and potholes. Patrons arriving in sedans can park here and hike another half-mile to the trailhead; those in high-clearance vehicles can continue to the main parking circle.
: Red Rock Ranger District, 928-282-4119,
© 2007 Copyright Phoenix Magazine 15169 N. Scottsdale Road Suite C310 Scottsdale Arizona 85254
Travel & Outdoors
Best of The Valley
Phoenix Home & Garden Magazine
Advertise With Us
Web Site Design