Cypress Thicket

Payson, Arizona

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Views of the Mazatzals from any point on this ride are breathtaking. The only man-made structure on the entire ride is the Excursion Mine on FS 193. It’s private property, a scattering of water tanks and trailer homes. Off the road a bit, red steel posts dot the landscape. Each post is an official federal mine claim. Don’t mess with these posts or even mention the phrase “claim jumper” very loudly; Arizona’s miners are notoriously protective of their stakes. Payson’s mine country has had a long and troubled past. Most of the area’s mines did not pay off very well, and the land is so rugged that it was difficult to move people and equipment into and out of the countless gulches and hills. The best part of Payson’s mining history is that visitors can now explore the remains of various mines: Oxbow, Zulu, Midget, Thompson, etc. Trail Surface: Gravel roads and jeep roads.

Cypress Thicket Professional Review and Guide

"Views of the Mazatzals from any point on this ride are breathtaking. The only man-made structure on the entire ride is the Excursion Mine on FS 193. It’s private property, a scattering of water tanks and trailer homes. Off the road a bit, red steel posts dot the landscape. Each post is an official federal mine claim. Don’t mess with these posts or even mention the phrase “claim jumper” very loudly; Arizona’s miners are notoriously protective of their stakes.

Payson’s mine country has had a long and troubled past. Most of the area’s mines did not pay off very well, and the land is so rugged that it was difficult to move people and equipment into and out of the countless gulches and hills. The best part of Payson’s mining history is that visitors can now explore the remains of various mines: Oxbow, Zulu, Midget, Thompson, etc. Trail Surface: Gravel roads and jeep roads."

Activity Type: Mountain Biking
Nearby City: Payson
Distance: 18
Elevation Gain: 2,387 feet
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Technical Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Duration: 3 hours
Season: Year-round
Trailhead Elevation: 4,720 feet
Top Elevation: 5,000 feet
Accessibility: Dog-friendly
Local Contacts: Tonto National Forest
Local Maps: USGS North Peak, Payson South
Driving Directions: Directions to Cypress Thicket

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May 2018