Arizona Trailblazers Hiking Club
Horton Springs Backpack
when Trip Report : Saturday-Sunday, September 10-11, 2022
  Trip Report : October 23-24, 2021
where Horton Creek, Tonto National Forest / Mogollon Rim
    This is an introduction to backpacking hike. Anyone with an interest in backpacking is welcome.
    Horton Springs is a scenic and cool hike amidst the ponderosa pines. From the trailhead we will follow the perennial Horton Creek to its source at the springs beneath the ramparts of the Mogollon Rim.
    At the trailhead parking lot, the leaders will perform an equipment check and distribute group gear and food.
    After a group picture, we begin by hiking a well-travelled trail that parallels the creek. The hike includes a non-stop show of waterfalls, fields of wildflowers, wild berries, and forests of maples. After 3 miles, we join the Highline Trail. Another 0.4 miles and we reach the springs (about noon).
    We will set up camp and eat lunch. Spend the rest of the day exploring the spring and learning some field craft skills. We will prepare dinner (about 5PM) before sunset. After dinner, spend some time around the campfire (Fire status permitting) before retiring to sleep. In the morning we will breakfast (about 8AM) and break camp. We should reach the trailhead around noon.
    I will send an informational email a week before the hike to update weather conditions I will include an equipment list and link to a Intro to backpacking tutorial.
    I will also be available to coach or mentor anyone prior to the trip. I have some spare equipment (Backpack, sleeping bags, pad, 2-person tent) for people that are just starting.
distance 6.8 miles
time Overnight +3 hours backpacking per day.
EC +-1,215' elevation change
elevations 5360' (Horton Creek) to 6562' (Horton Spring)
type Out and Back
starting at
Horton Creek Trailhead 34.340977° N,  111.095018° W  
on trail 100% — Horton Creek and Highline Trails
rating "C"     Rate yourself as a hiker.
dogs allowed no
cost Sharing gas expenses with the driver.
The club also allows voluntary contributions of $5 per non-member.
weather Payson
meet 9/10 Saturday 6:30 AM in the parking lot of the Target Center on the south side of Shea Blvd., about a mile west of Highway 87 (Beeline). For those leaving their cars behind, please park up against the north curb away from Target. We will be at the trailhead around 8 AM and begin the backpack around 8:30.
•  From Payson drive about 15 miles east on Highway 260.
Turn left (north) onto Tonto Creek Road (FR289).
Travel a mile north to the Horton Springs parking lot.
The trailhead is across the road.

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updated September 17, 2022 © Copyright 2022, Arizona Trailblazers.  All rights reserved.