Verde River Trail from Twin Buttes

Payson, Arizona

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This hike follows the northern third of Verde River Trail down the well-named Hardscrabble Mesa and into the Mazatzal Wilderness. It then follows Road Mesa down, crosses a drainage, and climbs up and over Cedar Bench before finally descending toward the Verde River near its confluence with Fossil Creek. A mile from the river, the trail forks, giving a near-even choice of camping on the banks of the Verde River or those of Fossil Creek. Don't be fooled by the latitude; this is a very tough hike in the summer heat. OUTSTANDING FEATURES: Wildlife, isolation, scene overlooks of several canyons, choice of two riverbanks to camp at.

Verde River Trail from Twin Buttes Professional Review and Guide

"This hike follows the northern third of Verde River Trail down the well-named Hardscrabble Mesa and into the Mazatzal Wilderness. It then follows Road Mesa down, crosses a drainage, and climbs up and over Cedar Bench before finally descending toward the Verde River near its confluence with Fossil Creek.

A mile from the river, the trail forks, giving a near-even choice of camping on the banks of the Verde River or those of Fossil Creek. Don't be fooled by the latitude; this is a very tough hike in the summer heat. OUTSTANDING FEATURES: Wildlife, isolation, scene overlooks of several canyons, choice of two riverbanks to camp at."

Activity Type: Backpacking, Hiking
Nearby City: Payson
Distance: 23.2
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Moderate
Duration: 2 days
Season: Year-round
Local Contacts: Tonto National Forest
Driving Directions: Directions to Verde River Trail from Twin Buttes

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May 2018