Thumb Butte Trail

Bullhead City, Arizona

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This extremely pretty route takes the backcountry traveler along the western side of the Black Mountains, through rugged terrain, gravelly washes, and remnants of the mining era. The trail leaves Arizona 68 to the west of Union Pass on an unmarked but well-used gravel road, 19.5 miles west of Kingman. A series of turns leads to increasingly smaller and less traveled roads, passing around the distinctive rock spire of Thumb Butte. Special Attractions: Spectacular scenery in the Black Mountains; Old mine remains; Thumb Butte; Wild burros. High-clearance 4WDs are required. This trail has either a rough, rutted surface, rocks up to 9 inches, mud and deep sand that may be impassable for inexperienced drivers, or stream crossings up to 18 inches deep. Certain sections may be steep enough to cause traction problems, and you may encounter very narrow shelf roads with steep drop-offs and tight clearance between rocks or trees.

Thumb Butte Trail Professional Review and Guide

"This extremely pretty route takes the backcountry traveler along the western side of the Black Mountains, through rugged terrain, gravelly washes, and remnants of the mining era. The trail leaves Arizona 68 to the west of Union Pass on an unmarked but well-used gravel road, 19.5 miles west of Kingman. A series of turns leads to increasingly smaller and less traveled roads, passing around the distinctive rock spire of Thumb Butte.

Special Attractions: Spectacular scenery in the Black Mountains; Old mine remains; Thumb Butte; Wild burros. High-clearance 4WDs are required. This trail has either a rough, rutted surface, rocks up to 9 inches, mud and deep sand that may be impassable for inexperienced drivers, or stream crossings up to 18 inches deep. Certain sections may be steep enough to cause traction problems, and you may encounter very narrow shelf roads with steep drop-offs and tight clearance between rocks or trees."

Activity Type: Off-Highway Drives
Nearby City: Bullhead City
Distance: 14.5
Trail Type: Shuttle
Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult
Duration: 3 hours
Season: Year-round, best fall to spring
Trailhead Elevation: 2,000 feet
Top Elevation: 2,700 feet
Local Maps: USGS Union Pass, Oatman, Davis Dam; BLM Davis Dam
Driving Directions: Directions to Thumb Butte Trail

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May 2018