Explore Payson/Rim area - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Absolutely beautiful trail. So much green, so close to Phoenix, and about 20° cooler. The creek is gorgeous and refreshing. The trail runs right next to the creek most of the way. The trail is very easy, very wide, and mostly flat except for a few uphills as you get further in. The waterfall is small but pretty and a good place to relax. Past the waterfall is a more challenging trail that climbs right up the mountain to Promontory Butte, which offers an amazing scenic lookout. I've been to Horton Creek 3 times and enjoyed each time.

is alreary open ??or is still close..because i want to go next weekend

hiking
3 days ago

Great hike, not sure why this is rated as moderate. Once you get to the waterfall the real hike begins in one mile you will climb 1400+ feet up the face of the rim. The trail is pretty much non existent I had to follow stacks of rocks and build my own in some spots, as my phone had died and I was on my own. All trails, say this is a 4 mile 1900 ft elevation gain when I got to waterfall i was like there is now way I hiked 1900 ft. I pulled up all trails and seen I still had 1 mile to go. I did not want to miss out on anything and pressed on. Take lots of water and food as that last mile is ruff. If all you want to do is hike to the waterfall then I would say this hike is easy.

My family loved it! It was my 4 year old daughters first time really having to climb so I'm glad we went.

hiking
10 days ago

Perfect for someone from the Phoenix area because you'll get your fix of wildflowers and a woodland paradise, including waterfalls. It's a charming hike, and good for summer because it's shaded and has the cool water of the creek nearby.

hiking
13 days ago

Very Short, very heavily tracked, but absolutely beautiful!

Loved it, next time I’m starting earlier than 9 am though!

on Horton Creek Trail

15 days ago

great place to be naked!!

Great hike for beginners and those not wanting to be physically challenged too much. Great scenery and amazing boulders to be see. Bring lots of water!

hiking
18 days ago

Was an amazingly beautiful hike! Lots of small waterfalls along the creek! Also lots of bugs and mosquitos! Take some repellent with you. Weather was amazing!

hiking
19 days ago

Hiked 7/29/18 with a friend and two dogs. Forgot how beautiful and lovely this trail is. Not too difficult, lots of water spots to stop at. Water is low right now but still worth it. Started early am Sunday, saw a couple people hiking out, and tons of people coming back, was getting pretty busy. Drive all the way until you cross the small bridge, park immediately in the lot to your left, cross back over the bridge on foot and up the little dirt road hill to start the trail.

Good trail! Small waterfall, would be larger after rain or in spring when snow melts.

on Box Canyon Trail

20 days ago

Reading the reviews really helped! Short and sweet!

Such a great trail! Easy little hike/trail, constant river close to trail at all times. Great for dogs and kids too!! There is a bathroom next to the parking spots as well. Lots of little spots to just hang out by the river the whole way up. Make sure to bring water and keep in mind the temperature of the ground if you have a dog (even at 85 degrees the dirt and sand gets up to 100-105 degrees, which is waaay too hot for any pup)

hiking
20 days ago

Beautiful lake, breathtaking views, wonderful hike. Be careful when taking your dogs, there are quite a few off leash dogs at this lake.

hiking
21 days ago

We have 4 kids- 9, 7, 6, and 2. The bigger kids could do most of it all on their own. A few times we had to hold their hand but they loved it. There are a few cooler spots with small streams to play in. Beautiful scenery. The 2-year-old had to be held most of the time and passed between my wife and me, but we made it.

Nice looping hike along the lake. Busy place, but worth the drive.

Good loop around the lake. Easy for kids.

Great hike. Might be hard for young children.

hiking
25 days ago

Awesome hike with a beautiful "rain forest" in the desert.

hiking
25 days ago

No trail to follow. Stay along the creek until you get to the large boulders. Once your at the area where there are several flat water falls, turn right and follow creek until you get to the area where the large water fall is with the tree branch sticking out.

hiking
26 days ago

I would not call this a hiking trail, more like boulder climbing all the way to the bridge. I hike three times a week and this is not moderate, I would give this a very hard rating. There was no enjoyment for me taking this route to the bridge. This may be enjoyable for some people, just be prepared if you decide to go here. Also, be very careful when you get to the bridge, very slippery and dangerous rocks. If you are going there to see the bridge I would recommend the Gowan trail, short and steep. It is very beautiful there, but I will not be going back.

hiking
27 days ago

Note - this IS NOT closed. Very easy trail, not even moderate. Beautiful with water all along and a great water spot at the end. It is best for a quick simple 4 mile in and 4 mile back out or better yet as the last leg in the 10 mile Derrick - Highline - Horton loop. to read about that, check out the reviews under Derrick Trail.

hiking
27 days ago

I am giving this 4 stars only if you do the whole loop. Going up Derrick by itself is 3 miles of blah. Also, Derrick itself NOT difficult. I would honestly rate it as a moderate to strong Mild. Now, you really need to do the loop. Start at the trailhead, which is across the street from the Derrick TH lot. Do the 3 miles up to the Highline Trail. turn left at the sign (into Highline). Highline is what makes this difficult - it is only 2.5 miles on Highline until you get to Horton, but it is a tough long 2.5. Beautiful canopy and views though. you will drop into the sound of water. This is where you pick up Horton -go over the water and through the gate. Then at the sign, follow Horton left. Horton is a breeze -4 miles down with awesome scenery and water. Once out just follow the road back up to the Derrick parking lot (about 150 yards). This whole hike ends up about 10 miles and is worth the time.

Beautiful area. There are veins of deep green rock mixed in with the granite in layers. It is a short hike but beautiful. 7/15 is the one year anniversary of the flash flood that took ten lives in one family. There is a family memorial at the edge of the parking lot listing the names and ages of the ten that were lost in the flood. My wife and I walked to the end of the trail to see the water wheel. It is actually by the parking lot. Did some research on the wheel. The web say the wheel was used in the early 1900s by a gold miner named James Greer who used it to power an ore crusher. Nice to see a little history.

1 month ago

It’s a beautiful hike but moderate is an extremely generous rating. The only thing moderate is the distance. The trail is difficult to follow, the terrain is very challenging and the elevation is very steep for the distance traveled. This needs to be changed to hard. Not for little kids and make sure you wear good protective footwear.

hiking
1 month ago

Good short trail, open as of 7/14/18, but the water is very brown and muddy from rain. Not much flowing water yet.

hiking
1 month ago

Went on a Wednesday morning, arrived around 9:00 AM- did not pass one person on the trail! People were on the shore fishing, but didn’t see anyone on the actual hiking path. In shade most of the time. We left around 11:00 AM, right as it started to get pretty warm (85-90). Perfect day for me and my pup!

Think it was really 3.5 but better than 3. WE got there at 8am on a Saturday and it was pleasantly cool at 71 degrees and parked right at the store. The most noise at that time was coming from the baby cranes in the next on the north side of lake. It was quiet but the first half mile of the shore was completely filled with fisherman. Lots of families with little kids :). First 2 miles was flat, easy and not too entertaining (except for the baby cranes in the trees that we spotted). The last 1.7 miles was more interesting with some rocks, switch backs. Wildlife spotting was somewhat disappointing, the cranes, a few osprey and lotsa stellar jays. The last mile was horrific with noise as inconsiderate hikers descended upon the trail carrying loud music, off leash out of control dogs, etc. The lake looked clean and refreshing and we woulda' loved to have been on the lake in the early am before the crowds got there. When we left at 1130 it was a zoo - people double parking, etc. IT was 77 at 1130. Good little 3.7 mile (exacly on my Garmin) hike with little challenge but enough to get you out of the Valley.

Easy hike, great views, lots of shade

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