Our hike through this mixed consider and deciduous forest this autumn day was delightful. Although the trail was rocky, it no steep ascents or decents. One problem was that the driving directions to the trailhead were, in fact, directions to a connecting trail (Billy Creek). This made the total length twelve and a half miles. My wife and I met a few mountain bikers and some other trail runners, hikers, and their dogs. We are looking forward to snow shoeing the trail later this winter.
Don't do the loop! The rim lakes vista trail is beautiful. But the general crook trail and the military sinkhole nature trail were very disappointing.
On the suggestion of a review I read (on another website) we took the loop counter clockwise starting with the general crook trail. This is more of a dirt road than a trail. It was hot and the was no shade to be has anywhere. The first thing I noticed was that the forest was really thin and ask the tree were marked. Not long later I noticed that trees...a lot of trees...had been cut down. We saw a bulldozer and a tree-cutter parked on the side of the trail. Soon after we came across two huge piles of dead, cut down trees.
I go on hikes to get in touch with nature, and this is not what I want to see.
1.8 miles later we took a left onto military sink hole nature trail. At first it wasn't much better. We were still seeing signs of deforestation but as we went on we came across trees that appeared to have fallen naturally. A couple were blocking the trail and we had to climb over them. As the trail descended into the "sinkhole" it started to feel more like a hike. The road (fr 300) came into view as we ascended out of the "hole" and then he came to the truly beautiful part of the hike.
We crossed fr 300 to the first of many vistas. Lovely mountain views that seemed to go on forever!!! There is a parking lot here and there were quite a few people hanging out, but this is the only place where we came across anyone. We stopped for a water break and to take pictures. The rest of the hike took twice as long as it should have because I was constantly stopping to take pictures. The views were amazing! There was a storm in the distance just over the rim. It made the temperature drop about 10 degrees and made the view even more amazing!
The last mile of the hike we were walking away from the rim and there wasn't much to see but we met a cute little horned lizard.
I'm really glad we got the unpleasant part of this loop over with first. If we were to do it again I would forget about the loop and do the rim lakes vista trail out-and-back.
to do this whole Blue Ridge Cave Trail AZ it supposed to be, is longer than 6.7 miles. Also, the trail hasn't moved in several places you can't follow the trail that you have to follow the horse path. This path is very miserable to walk on Due to the rocks, horse road apples, and uneven ground all over the place... without a break. There is nothing you can look at because of the constant need to look at the ground. There is not much to look at here. You will pass a little lake and a little cave, But other than that, it's just a trail through the forest.
Lisa W. on Woods Canyon Lake Trail
One of the most beautiful spots in AZ! Great for dogs
Visit was August 6, 2016
Unbelievably gorgeous vistas along the rim. We hiked a few miles into the military sinkhole area. It felt like we were back home in the Pocono Mountains with the cool temps, pine trees and even a few oak trees. We'll always remember the butterscotch-scented pines. After that we drove through about 20 miles or so stopping often to take in the views. If you are planning on driving you should know what most of the road is not paved and there will be quite a few ATVs speeding along this road that will want to pass you. Just be a courteous driver and let them by. The sound of the ATVs also tends to scare off the wild life, so I wouldn't expect to see any elk or the like from the roadway. Would love to come back to camp /hike along the rim someday.