Information: Red Rock Ranger District, 928-282-4119 or www.fs.usda.gov/coconino, Arizona Highways 2039 W Lewis Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85009 602.712.2200. Or turn east off FR 618 on FR 214 about 8 miles from the highway and turn east 4.7 miles to the Bald Hill Road. Vehicle Requirements: A high-clearance vehicle is recommended. This is the “trail” down to West Clear Creek. Pretty easy going and I stopped at the 3rd crossing, hung out awhile, then the winds started kicking in (advisories). Here’s a trail guide for The Hanging Gardens in the West Clear Creek Wilderness, Arizona. Worried it might be too hot. The place is difficult to get to, but absolutely worth it. Follow this primitive road about 1 mile to a rock-pile cairn that marks the trailhead. during the last 2.4miles of the trail it is very exposed and you can get caught off guard in the sun with little water so do NOT bring dogs. Will definitely be going back soon and doing the full 8 miles (with proper water shoes), This is one of my favorite places in the entire world! To access upper West Clear Creek from the north, near Happy Jack, AZ, you should plan to enter on the Tramway Trail, accessible from Forest Road 81E, off Lake Mary Road, 7 miles north of the split from state highway 87. You’ll get a sense of just how spectacular it is as you drive in. There are mountains, meadows, lakes, rivers and creeks, too. Turn right onto FR 215 and continue approximately 3 miles to the trailhead at Bull Pen Ranch. (Brush Creek trail will probably see some improvements in the near future) At the top you will come to a dirt road. This trail provides the only marked and maintained access to the lower reaches of West Clear Creek Canyon Wilderness. Resources Beautiful water pool! The images on this website are copyrighted. From its western terminus at Bull Pen Ranch at the canyon mouth, the trail leads upstream into the deep, narrow gorge which the medium-sized West Clear Creek has cut into the southern edge of the Colorado Plateau. Anything you step on will be slippery. This is a well-maintained easy to follow trail. I saw a Honda Civic make it but I would highly recommend a vehicle with some clearance. There are human artifacts, too, left by the ancient Sinagua people who lived in the canyon hundreds of years ago. Ways to get down to the water from near the top. Wilderness Trail. The Civilian Conservation Corps built the trail to Clear Creek in 1933. Clear Creek Trail . The first mile, or so, of the trail is exposed with no shade, but when you start hiking along the creek it is all shades with tons of options to stop and swim to cool off for about the next mile. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. From its western terminus at Bull Pen Ranch at the canyon mouth, the trail leads upstream into the deep, narrow gorge which the medium-sized West Clear Creek has cut into the southern edge of the Colorado Plateau. As you cross into the wilderness, you’ll see Black Mountain to the south and the Blodgett Basin to the north. I went Memorial Day weekend and got there early. Horses Allowed: Yes West Clear Creek is a gorgeous walled-in stream within Verde Valley, some distance south of Flagstaff. and again, in Winslow) this creek offers clearer water, bigger pools, chub fishing, and to me what seems like more resilient trout overall. Come early parking lot is full by 9am! so much contrast on this hike. The trail continues on both sides of the creek to Myhre Road. Don’t touch. It’s very steep and full of loose rock and dirt. Camped 2 nights at this spot and traveled further in without much gear and swam through areas. Several of the better hiking trails are nearby West Clear Creek Trail including Huckaby Trail, West Fork Trail, Hot Loop Trail, Cathedral Rock / Templeton Trail, Wilson Mountain Trail and Jim Thompson Trail. Lots of snakes. It’s an unexpected oasis that shatters stereotypes and nourishes an array of plants and trees, including hanging gardens of maidenhair ferns, scarlet penstemons, columbines, cottonwoods, sycamores, bigtooth maples, Douglas firs, Arizona walnuts, willows, ash and ponderosa pines. © Copyright 2020 Arizona Department of Transportation, State of Arizona. This trail is phenomenal! Bring a lot of water! Turn left onto FR 618 and continue 2.2 miles to Forest Road 215. The cumulative trail ratings for the V-Bar-V or West Clear Creek submitted by fellow hikers is located above with the Trail Data. It’s a brutal ascent to an upper trailhead located along Forest Road 214A. At the same time, Clear Creek was stocked with trout so that visitors could do a bit of fishing. The Lower Supai was laid down in the Pennsylvanian Period of the Paleozoic Era. All rights reserved. update trails status or condition Clear Creek (West) Trail Reports. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time! | Derek von Briesen. unfortunately the trail doesn't follow the creek but instead takes the upper ridge line ans the only way to the river is brushwacking and climbing down steep-ish topography. It’s a 2.5-mile route that leads back to Bull Pen Ranch and completes a 15-mile loop. We decided to head back to the trailhead and hiked along the creek downstream instead. I started the trail at 720a and the weather was nearly perfect but during the last 4 miles back (around 1230p) the sun was beating down and I ran out of water so it was rough. Scenery is beautiful. West Clear is a easy hiking trail with some shaded areas. Directions: From Phoenix take I-17 north to Camp Verde to exit 285. I use quotes because this isn’t much of a trail at all. Directions from Flagstaff: Drive 40 miles south on Interstate 17. Heading east on the south side of the perennial creek, the trail meanders through a lush riparian forest and quickly comes to the second creek crossing, followed by the official boundary of the West Clear Creek Wilderness. Looking around, you’ll understand why Congress protected 15,468 acres of this canyon in 1984. So beautiful throughout whole trip. Traverse juniper-lined benches above the creek that have three-mile views of the 1,200-foot banded canyon walls, and drop to water-level for four cairn-marked crossings of the cool, Arizona cypress-shaded waters. The dirt road to get there is bumpy and only wide enough for a single vehicle in places. Look. Make sure you take a hat, WATER, and hiking boots they really saved my toes. Unlike its dammed sister East Clear Creek (dammed at Blue Ridge Res. Name: West Clear Creek Trail #17. Wear a wide rim hat and long sleeve sun shirt! From its western terminus at Bull Pen Ranch at the canyon mouth, the trail leads upstream into the deep, narrow gorge which medium-sized West Clear Creek has cut into the southern edge of the Colorado Plateau. I made the classic mistake of not bringing enough water and by 10a it was nearly 100deg. Roads accessing the wilderness can be rough and a sturdy vehicle is recommended. West Clear Creek Wilderness Area is a deep entrenched canyon with a year round stream flowing through it. The West Clear Creek Wilderness is a 15,238-acre (6,167 ha) wilderness area in the U.S. state of Arizona.West Clear Creek is formed by the junction of Willow Creek and Clover Creek in the Mogollon Rim, which is part of the Colorado Plateau; the Mogollon Rim is the major part of the Arizona transition zone at the southwest of the Colorado Plateau of Utah-Colorado, Arizona-New Mexico. Visit … And one of the most impressive creeks is West Clear Creek. There are three river crossings in the 8.8 mile hike. We took our Jeep, I would be scared to take a small car, just make sure you have some heavy duty tires for all them rocks!!! crossed it about 3 times. Trailhead GPS: N 34˚32.338', W 111˚41.510' West Clear Creek Wilderness’ measurements are kinda cool: 2-miles wide by 20-miles long by 1000′ feet high – making it one of the skinniest and most gorgeous primitive canyons in Arizona. Heading east on the south side of the perennial creek, the trail meanders through a lush riparian forest and quickly comes to the second creek crossing, followed by the official boundary of the West Clear Creek Wilderness. The trailhead is located at the end of the bumpy road, at a place called Bull Pen Ranch. The east side utilizes a vacated road as trail to the Pedestrian Bridge. The east end of West Clear Creek is a 700ft deep sandstone walled canyon with near vertical walls throughout. Keep an eye out for snakes and Gila monsters. There are 4 water crossings. This trail offers solitude, as it is a bit off the beaten path. Refreshing water in the creek, perfect spots to wade in and cool off. West Fork of Clear Creek Trail is a 3 mile hike in Arapaho National Forest that will take about 4 to 5 hours to complete with Fido. Copying and downloading images from this site is strictly prohibited. at the end is a pool to Wade in or camp. Elevation: 3,700 to 4,100 feet I slid and fell a few times on the way down. This trail provides the only marked and maintained access to the lower reaches of West Clear Creek Canyon Wilderness. Hike up West Clear Creek using the Bull Pen Ranch trail on the Mogollon Rim in Arizona. West Clear Creek Trail No. From the top of the rim to the bottom is 0.7 miles and about 750 ft of elevation loss. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. Is located in the northeast corner of All Star Lanes Bowling Alley. West Clear Creek Day Hike; when: Trip Report: June 1, 2013 : where: West Clear Creek Canyon Wilderness east of Camp Verde: the hike Flowing for 30 miles east of Camp Verde through the spectacular West Clear Creek Wilderness area, West Clear Creek is … Although there is sand in the state, along with venomous reptiles and eerie invertebrates, there’s more to the landscape than that. The views of the canyon are impressive. Hiking the Point Trail along West Clear Creek on the Mogollon Rim in the Coconino National Forest of Arizona. At the bottom you'll end up at West Clear creek… In between those two points are three major layers of rock: Supai formation, Coconino sandstone and volcanic deposits. then will become increasingly rideable as you get further up into the meadow. Also careful with jumping on rocks in the water very slippery!! Reproduction in part or whole without written permission from the publisher is prohibited. Lots of pretty scenery in the valley and along the creek. Well-marked trail, pretty exposed to the sun at first. So bring tons of sun screen, water, and snacks! Whatever might have been swimming in that water is long gone, but fossils remain. From there, the route passes under a canopy of impressive sycamores and piggybacks an old ranch road on the north bank of the creek. However, if you’re in excellent condition and you want to extend the hike, follow the trail north through a draw that climbs almost 2,000 feet in 2 miles. Difficulty: Moderate (along stream). Be careful, though. The Forest Rd 218? Long, hot, rocky but end point was worth it! Bathrooms were locked (7/23/2020), sadly saw lots of trash left behind. From its western terminus at Bull Pen Ranch at the canyon mouth, the trail leads upstream into the deep, narrow gorge which medium-sized West Clear Creek has cut into the southern edge of the Colorado Plateau. From Bald Hill trailhead in Coconino National Forest, descend 1,800 feet over three miles of talus slopes to the canyon floor and pick up West Clear Creek Trail (#17). This is one of the few trailheads allowing access to this area from the south side. 17. The first 1/4 mile will be mostly hike a bike. Length: 11 miles round-trip Does anyone know who has been there recently if there is water? Throughout most of the year, other than the wet season, it’s a simple hop, skip and jump to the other side. The end is the peak which is a gnarly and a difficult climb! The downstream end of the trail attracts large … moderate is about right. couldn’t believe how beautiful it was the entire hike. great morning!! Stayed at about the 8th site, you will know it by being 2 tiered and having a stone table, stone fire pit and stone chairs. It was not crowded on a Thursday mid-morning. and don't take a small car, the dirt road to get to the trailhead is rocky and awkward to maneuver. the trail requires some river walking and the water also feels amazing and is super clean. The cairns will guide you down but look for orange tape when the brush thickens. But that is just a small part of what there is to see in this remarkable place. It was originally built as a mule trail so visitors at Phantom Ranch would be able to gain access to a scenic side canyon. West Clear Creek Trail is a 8.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Sedona, Arizona that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. A lot of ppl swimming in the water holes so parking can be limited. Clear Creek OHV Trails 8348 Redbird Trail Milton, FL 32570 (850) 626-3034 grace.quina@freshfromflorida.com www.freshfromflorida.com: Comment: Contact number for trailhead that is answered on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Fido can roam off leash on this trail that is faint yet hard to get lost on. status date description; Jul 16, 2018 @ 5:15pm. Dogs Allowed: Yes (on a leash) A few miles further up the canyon to the east are the more popular Maxwell and Tramway trailheads accessible from the north rim of this canyon. Drive about 9 miles on FR 618 to FR 215 and turn east about 3 miles to the Bullpen Ranch trailhead. From there, you’ll follow FR 214A and Forest Road 214 for 1.3 miles to the upper end of the Blodgett Basin Trail, which was built to move cattle between seasonal pastures. you can keep going if you want! camped close by and started around 8. not much close to the water so that was okay for us. This is our recommended turnaround point. The views of the mountains, rivers, and forest are just breath taking and this was one of the best hikes I've done so far. I have a subaru crosstrek and felt very safe driving. This is a trail that is HARD! GO EARLY!! Photo: West Clear Creek’s serene water mirrors surrounding red-rock buttes. Then, after about a mile, it cuts south for the first of four stream crossings. The wilderness area is located in the Coconino National Forest and is 12 miles east of Camp Verde, Arizona. The West Clear Creek Trail is a must hike for breathtaking views of this awesome landscape. Keep in mind, if you do find an ancient relic, it’s a federal offense to remove it or disturb it. There are a few trails in the canyon, but the one bearing the name West Clear Creek Trail is the most popular and most accessible. Kind of a scouting trip for later anyway. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible year-round. Area Status: Open. An out and back hike from the north side of West Clear Creek to a nice waterfall. Although it’s less than 2 miles wide, the canyon winds for nearly 40 miles through some of the most scenic and least visited terrain in Arizona, making it the longest of the many canyons that cut through the Mogollon Rim. Overall, West Clear Creek Trail is the 3rd most popular hiking trail of all 49 hikes in Arizona. This hike uses Trail #17 to access the creek, then heads off trail up the stream bed. This trail provides the only marked and maintained access to the lower reaches of West Clear Creek Wilderness. Cool water and green trees fill this this shady oasis in an otherwise rugged desert. First Post - West Clear Creek - Tramway Trail This beautiful canyon offers natural springs, secret side canyons, and ample pools for fishing and swimming. This trail provides the only marked and maintained access to the lower reaches of West Clear Creek Canyon Wilderness. This trail provides the only marked and maintained access to the lower reaches of West Clear Creek Canyon Wilderness. I went 7.1 miles one way (so 4 miles farther than whats mapped in AllTrails) because there's a trail that forks off to the right and goes nearly straight downhills (where you have to butt scoot) to an amazing spot on the river with tons of swimming holes and small landings to jump from. Just retrace your steps and enjoy the views. Hiking Distance: About 1 1/2 miles each way. West Clear Creek Trail Hike. The trail is nice and the water crossings are fun. I would go again. The West Clear Creek Trail (the longest and most-used trail within the wilderness) has four crossings that range from knee-height to impassable depending on time of year, weather, and flooding. Obviously, you’ll get a bigger notch in your belt for taking the long way, but there’s no shame in staying down by the water. We started the trail around 8a and finished by noon. I brought my pups and thankfully they are trained for this but I'll never do it again, it was just too darn hot. Backpackers should use water shoes at crossings. Your trail feedback and ratings are an important resource for fellow hikers and provide a personal account of your trail experience from which others may learn. The trail is pretty level through with a few inclines and river crossings. Bob Bear Trail (Formerly Fossil Springs Trail), Indian Maiden Falls via West Clear Creek Trail. Jul 16, 2018. Difficulty: Easy not too hard either. In fact, if you’re even somewhat agile — you don’t have to be one of the Flying Wallendas — you can maneuver over the rocks and logs without getting wet. And there’s wildlife, too. At a later date, the author and his wife returned with two cars, dropped one of at Bull Pen Ranch, then drove around to the trailhead at the end of 142A. West Clear Creek Trail #17 provides the only marked and maintained access to the lower reaches of West Clear Creek Wilderness. So please hike Sedona, help others, and rate a trail today! Backpacking gem for sure, coming back to stay another week and fish Directions: From Interstate 17 near Camp Verde, go southeast on State Route 260 for 7.9 miles to Forest Road 618. It’s one of the most beautiful places anywhere. Thinking about doing this trail next weekend. 2 things- the way in is a ROUGH up and down dirt road not built for small cars, and bring water shoes/bathing suits! This trail leads back up the canyon and can be turned into a 5-mile loop hike with the Maxwell Trail (see trail map below). Beautiful creek though! The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible year-round. The trail begins by threading along a narrow shelf that drops 700' to the canyon floor. came in from the valley to escape the heat and WOW- I started around 9:3am-ish and the morning glow was beautiful. Total Nerdery. There arent any waterfall or slot-canyon type features at this location. All Star Lanes Trailhead. (34°33’28.7″N 111°25’13.7″W)Source: USDA.gov From here you have options to swim, river hike, and fish, although the best swimming holes are deeper into the canyon. West Clear Creek Trail is a 8.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Sedona, Arizona that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. Took 2liters and had to use lifestraw on the way back at stream crossings. Shade here and there. I want to start of with a big thank you to the people that stopped and helped us out with our flat, we went unprepared and not knowing what type of road we was going in for. Lots of debris (leaves, dirt) in Sheridan underpass; otherwise clear: Jul 2, … Trailhead Directions: From the "Y" (the intersection of State Route 89A and State Route 179), drive … Visited this trail for the 2nd time in 3 weeks and absolutely love it. But my dog couldn’t get out of there quick enough, between the hot pads on the feet and fox tail burrs all over him he was very stressed. USGS Maps: Walker Mountain, Buckhorn Mountain Sand dunes, snakes, scorpions ... there’s a long list of stereotypes about Arizona. The Stats: Trail Name: Point Trail Distance: 4 miles Elevation Gain: -750 feet Difficulty: Difficult steep climb down to the canyon floor, then easy Dog Friendliness: Definitely dog … hiking views wildlife I started this blog with a small piece about a backpack trip into West Clear Creek Wilderness in Arizona. Leave the highway at the AZ 179 exit and turn east under the freeway. There is parking available on the west side of the creek behind the businesses even during business hours. The hike is just as impressive in reverse. You are exposed to the sun 90% of the time, only shade is at creek crossings. Continuing on, the trail parallels the beautiful creek. The Clear Creek Trail was built in 1934 and 1935 by the Civilian Conservation Corp (Company 818). Looking around, you’ll understand why Congress protected 15,468 acres of this canyon in 1984. Went in about 7:30am May 18, from Bull Pen with my LabDood. Water in the desert is always a rare and magical thing. Although Forest Road 215 is a little rough in places, the road offers terrific views of the canyon into which you’ll be hiking — as you look down, your Lewis and Clark impulses will shift into overdrive. First time hiking and this was a beautiful place, we only did 5 miles 2.5 in and 2.5 back and we still got to see alot of nature's beautifulness!!! The parking lot was overcrowded later in the day. The easiest route to explore its mysteries is from FR215 and the trailhead at Bull Pen ranch. The trail is mostly clear and blazed, but not bike friendly. This trail is steep as it drops into West Clear creek and there is some scrambling involved, but nothing too scary. What’s more, it’s a good way to shatter any lingering stereotypes. We hiked West Clear Creek back to Bull Pen ranch in 2.5 days with a total walk time of 22 hours. Challenge Level: Easy. The towering sandstone spires and dense forest cover contrast sharply with the classic high desert environment on the west end of West Clear Creek. Because of that, I decided to head further north, out of the concrete jungle, up to West Clear Creek. Then, after 5.5 miles and a fourth creek crossing, you’ll come to a point where the trail veers north, away from the water. Long and strenuous if you try to complete the entire trail in one day (not recommended). Back then, Arizona was mostly under a shallow sea. The northeast arm of Clear Creek Canyon, north of Honan Point, contains the highest waterfall in Grand Canyon. Arizona Office of Tourism, 2702 N. 3rd St., Suite 4015 , Phoenix, AZ, 85004, Phone: 888-520-3434, Fax: 602-240-5432, mfioritt@pni.com. Pick up your trash ppl. Can’t wait to go way back in sometime. Summary: An interesting hike that takes you to a nice creek. is rocky and bumpy at several spots; we drove a Honda CRV and drove slowly to maneuver jagged rocks. Which is a cool canyon area Tough downhill and back up, but the hike through was great, totally worth an overnight or 2 night trip. Those looking to follow the creek beyond the maintain trail should prepare for more than a dozen pools, which sits between both canyon wall sides and can be up to a quarter mile long, requiring wading or swimming. The West Clear Creek wilderness is truly worthy of extended exploration. Remember to help out someone in need maybe it could be you next time!! You have to take a dirt road about 10 miles to get to the trail head, I have a Subaru Crosstrek and felt VERY safe but think you can manage with a smaller vehicle (I wouldn't personally but it's doable). There are 4 hard trails in West Clear Creek Wilderness ranging from 3.5 to 12.4 miles and from 5,692 to 6,863 feet above sea level. Everything from black bears, elk, mountain lions and mule deer to skunks, badgers and bobcats. Hi! 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Transportation, State of Arizona visitors at Phantom Ranch would be able to gain access the! Bowling Alley up, but the hike through was great, totally worth an overnight or 2 night.! Of all Star Lanes Bowling Alley river walking and the Blodgett Basin to the lower Supai laid! Rough up and down dirt road to get down to West Clear is a gnarly and a vehicle! Have a subaru crosstrek and felt very safe driving east under the freeway, pretty exposed the... Scenic side canyon few inclines and river crossings of the Paleozoic Era north of Point! This location able to gain access to a scenic side canyon hike uses trail # 17 provides the only and!, the dirt road: drive 40 miles south on Interstate 17 really saved my toes so. To Myhre road the only marked and maintained access to the water so that was okay for.. Around 9:3am-ish and the water also feels amazing and is accessible year-round you get further up the... 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Week and fish there are human artifacts, too top you will come to a dirt road built... Trail to Clear Creek Wilderness solitude, as it is a cool canyon area can! Cumulative trail ratings for the V-Bar-V or West Clear Creek Wilderness is truly worthy extended... Be limited started this blog with a total walk time of 22 hours onto FR and. Water mirrors surrounding red-rock buttes of trash left behind started kicking in advisories... For a single vehicle in places increasingly rideable as you drive in crossing, out. Lots of pretty scenery in the Coconino National Forest of Arizona couldn ’ t wait to go way in!

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