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This is one of the most attractive trails in the entire trail system on the Prescott National Forest, particularly for horseback riders. This is in part due to the construction of a Horse Camp just south of Groom Creek. This is a very scenic trail, passing through one of the best stands of Ponderosa pine on the Forest. On Spruce Ridge, where trees do not obstruct the view, you can get panoramic views of the Crown King area, Prescott area, Mingus, and on a clear day, the San Francisco Peaks. The ride or hike up the drainage to Spruce Mountain is particularly attractive.

This is a well-maintained trail and its excellent condition makes it on the the best in the system. Because this trail loops back to the Horse Camp, it makes the 9 mile loop a feasible distance to do in one day on horseback.

Although horseback riders usually access this trail at the Groom Creek Horse Camp, hikers often start at the top of the Spruce Mountain where there is a picnic area.

Directions: From Prescott, Take Gurley Street east to Mt. Vernon Avenue. Take Mt. Vernon (Senator Highway, Forest Road 52) south for approximately 6.5 miles to Groom Creek. Continue on FR 52A for 4.5 miles. You will have just passed the entrance to Goldwater Lake before coming to FR 52A. Turn left onto FR 52A and travel for about four miles to the picnic area.

Elevation: 6,400 feet

Ending Elevation: 6,400 feet

Distance: 8.7 miles

Usage: Heavy

Difficulty: Strenuous

 
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Prescott National Forest, Arizona


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The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

Review by Wildernet Copyright © 2010 Wildernet.com all rights reserved.

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