Slide Rock State Park, originally the Pendley Homestead, is a 43-acre historic apple farm located in Oak Creek Canyon. Frank L. Pendley, having arrived in the canyon in 1907, formally acquired the land under the Homestead Act in 1910. Due to his pioneering innovation, he succeeded where others failed by establishing a unique irrigation system still in use by the park today. This allowed Pendley to plant his first apple orchard in 1912, beginning the pattern of agricultural development that has dominated the site since that time. Pendley also grew garden produce and kept some livestock. As one of the few homesteads left intact in the canyon today, Slide Rock State Park is a fine example of early agricultural development in Central Arizona. The site was also instrumental to the development of the tourism industry in Oak Creek Canyon. The completion of the canyon road in 1914 and the paving of the roadway in 1938 were strong influences in encouraging recreational use of the canyon. Hence, Pendley followed suit and in 1933, built rustic cabins to cater to vacationers and sightseers. The park is named after the famous Slide Rock, a stretch of slippery creek bottom adjacent to the homestead. Visitors may slide down a slick natural water chute or wade and sun along the creek. The swim area is located on National Forest land which is jointly managed by Arizona State Parks and the U.S. Forest Service. Together these areas have seen the making of many Hollywood movies such as "Broken Arrow" (1950) with James Stewart, "Drum Beat" (1954) with Alan Ladd and Charles Bronson, "Gun Fury" (1953) with Rock Hudson and Donna Reed, and a scene from "Angel and the Badman" (1946) with John Wayne. On July 10, 1985, Arizona State Parks purchased the park property from the Arizona Parklands Foundation. The park was dedicated in October 1987, and accepted onto the National Register of Historic Places on December 23, 1991.
I'm sure this is nice when the creek is passable but it was flooded due to a rain storm. In addition, the trail head is not really signed well. I eventually found it but couldn't continue because of the creek. Parking lot is bootlegger and you need a recreational pass.
Be careful as the rocks can be mossy and watched a few people bust open their head when they fell unexpectedly. A lot of people in the summer. If you can travel a little further out of town it's worth not fighting the people and traffic. Start early.
August of 2016 - the trail was overgrown and in need of maintenance. Was wearing shorts so my legs were badly scratched up from the thorny brush I had to plow through. Once up to the rim, you find your way to the fire lookout tower and if you are lucky, their will be a park ranger keeping watch and will invite you up for a great view. I'd hike it again as it's a great workout, but only if I knew for certain the brush has been cut back.
Reese M. on Slide Rock Trail
I would give this 5 Stars, but when I went with my family this summer, it was $30 per car! Beautiful place! Definitely a must see. My parents came and they are in their 70s. The steps you will go down initially were a little tough for them. They were fine, but needed to go slow and hold someone. In the summer, the rocks are very slippery from being wet, but wow was the rock jumping and rock sliding a blast! I have also been here when it is cooler out and in the winter time. Always a pleasure.
Went here with my mom after we hiked out of the Grand Canyon! Easy walk down to the creek! The creek is very crowded with people picnicking or sliding down the natural rock slide in the icy cold creek. Very refreshing on a hot day! My mom and I walked upstream in the creek a ways...only challenge is the rocks are very slippery (even in good water shoes), so good water shoes are a must!