Fossil Springs Trail #18

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Fossil Springs Trail #18

Hiking Trail

Fossil Springs Trail #18

by: Honza
Location:  Payson, AZ          Longitude:  -111.5683    Latitude:  34.4069
A "must" for any hiker; this trail takes your from the Rim Country mesas down into a Riparian, spring area!
Features and Interests:   Millions of gallons of water flow from the springs every hour (water at cool 72 degrees) creating a riparian environment giving life to lush vegetation and plant life.
Flora/Fauna on this Trail:
The trail starts out quite flat, initially following an old jeep road. Within the first mile, it will take a right, starting to descend quickly and steadily on a dusty rocky trail. The trail is very open all the way down so make sure to wear sunscreen lotion and hat!

Enjoying the panoramic views, in about 3 miles you will near the bottom. When you come to a junction with the Mail Trail, keep left on the Fossil Spring Trail. A short distance from here, you will reach a streambed/wash and you will follow the single trail to the west approximately .3 miles to the spring. The spring is in a lush area, so you will want to explore the trail further down which lead to amazing waterfalls and bathing pools!
Trail Distance:  7.9 miles round-trip
Elevation:  4270ft - 5600ft   (change 1330ft)
Trail Difficutly:  Difficult - good physical fitness is a must, large elevation changes
How Crowded:  Often frequented trail
Season:  March to November
Accomodations: (on site)   Toilets  CampingDrive north 18 miles from Payson on Highway 87. In Strawberry, turn left on Fossil Creek Road (FR 708) just passing/next to the Strawberry Lodge. Go 3.8 miles west on FR 708 (first 2 miles are paved and rest are dirt). Near 3.8 miles, turn right onto a side road (turn off was not marked, look for cars/parking lot off to the right) and follow 1/4 mile to the trailhead parking lot. Good dirt road, off-road vehicle not needed.
Tonto Natural Bridge   -   Moderate : .5 miles long : 4300ft to 4530ft (change 230ft)
Trail Ratings and Comments