Guide to Arizona Backroads & 4-Wheel Drive Trails
by Charles A. Wells (FunTreks)
© Charles A. Wells/FunTreks. All Rights Reserved.
This is a good long trail with a lot of rock crawling. You'll start at the desert floor near Lake Pleasant and end up in the pines in Crown King. I first drove this trail in 2009 in my then stock F-150 and got stuck twice on the rocks. The trail has changed significantly since then. There was some road equipment staged around the mid-point and it's obvious that much of the trail has been worked on. That said, there is still a lot of decent rock crawling and some nice hills to conquer. There is still one bare rock incline that i had to back up and take a different angle. But otherwise, my lightly modified F-150 had zero problems on this trail and I didn't scrape bottom once. Plan on a good 5-6 hours on the trail and don't air back up until you get to I-17. The washboard road is 30 miles from Crown King to I-17.
Fun trail to spend the day on, some new updates need to be posted for this trail. As of May 2012 most of the trail has been graded and is in good shape. The middle of the trail still has Rock Fields you need to pass thru but as long as you take your time it's nothing a stock Jeep can't handle. I've posted a few photos of the road so can see for yourself.
Very rough and twisty to the point of making me feel ill in places. Never did put my TJ into 4wd but folk less comfortable with their vehicles probably should at lest for the last part. Lots of jagged rocks and sharp turns. If you can't tolerate heights this is not your trail. Scenery is great but if you are the driver you will be too busy to see it.
THIS IS A GREAT TRAIL BUT NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART OR IF YOU HAVE BACK TROUBLE. THIS IS A "VERY" DIFFICULT TRAIL AND NOT ONLY IS THE LAST FOUR MILE VERY ROUGH, STEEP UP AND DOWN AND DIFFICULT BUT THERE ARE VERY JAGGED ROCKS AND BOULDERS THAT CAN CAUSE GREAT DAMAGE TOO YOUR TIRES AND VEHICLE. ONCE YOU REACH APPROXIMATELY THE 24 MILE MARK THERE IS NO TURNING BACK AS IT IS ALSO VERY STEEP AND ROUGH. IF YOU DON'T HAVE A GOOD SHORT HIGH CLEARENCE VEHICLE DON'T GO. I HAVE A JEEP WRANGLER SAHARA TRAIL RATED VEHICLE AND WE HAD SOME RATHER HAIRY MOMENTS, BUT WE MADE IT. IT TOOK MY WIFE AND I OVER AN HOUR AND 15 MINUTES TO FINISH THE LAST FOUR MILES. THE TRAIL WAS SO ROUGH THAT MY WIFE BECAME SICK FROM ALL OF THE JERKING AND BEING TOSSED AROUND. IF YOU GET STUCK, YOU ARE IN TROUBLE. THERE ARE SOME AREAS DURING THE LAST 8 MILE WHERE THERE ARE NO TURN AROUNDS AND NO WAY FOR ANYONE TO PASS YOU IS YOU HAVE TROUBLE. THE LAST FOUR MILE WAS ALSO COVERED WITH SNOW AND ICE AS WE WENT IN JANUARY 2007. THE VIEWS ARE GREAT AND THERE IS A LOT OF HISTORY HERE BUT DON'T BECOME PART OF THE LANDSCAPE AS A FEW OTHERS HAVE. THERE ARE SEVERAL VEHICLE ALONG THE WAY THAT WENT OF THE SIDE AND EVEN ONE VEHICLE WAS STUCK AT THE BOTTOM AND HAS NO WAY OUT. IT IS STILL THERE AND SLOWLY BEING DESTROYED BY SHOOTERS AND THE DESERT. ALSO THE LAST POINT THAT NEEDS TO BE CHANGED IS, AT THE END OF THE TRAIL TURN LEFT AND NOT RIGHT, RIGHT GOES TO A CAMPGROUND AT ABOUT 5 MILES. LEFT AND CROWN KING IS 1 MILE FROM THE END OF THE TRAIL.
Great quiet ride. Great views. Half of trail smooth easy riding and then changes to a bit of a challange.
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