Balancing Rock Trail is a 5.7 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Prescott, Arizona that features a river and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length5.7 miElevation gain544 ftRoute typeOut & back
Dogs on leashKid friendlyHikingHorseback ridingMountain bikingNature tripsWalkingRunningRiverViewsWildflowersWildlife
Description
Waypoints (0)
Facilities
Getting There

Balancing Rock Trail #349 begins at the Cayuse Equestrian Trailhead within the Granite Basin Recreation Area. The trail weaves up and down through shady pine forest studded with granite boulders. Wildflowers add color to the landscape throughout much of the year, and portions of the trail meander along charming seasonal creeks. Where this trail gains elevation, there are panoramic views of Granite Mountain and the surrounding wilderness. This trail connects with several others, providing many different opportunities to explore within the Granite Basin Recreation Area.

Restrooms and drinking water are available at the parking area, but not on trail. Other amenities at the trailhead include water for horses, hitching posts, and picnic tables.

From its intersection with Willow Creek Road, travel northwest on Iron Springs Road for 3 miles. Turn right onto Granite Basin Road and proceed 2.4 miles to the Cayuse Equestrian Trailhead on the right. Continue 0.1 miles to the parking area. There is ample parking for horse trailers and regular vehicles. The road is paved.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (103)
Photos (162)
Activities (95)
Completed (155)
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Arizona Greg
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HikingGreat!

Nice hike through the woods. Any elevation grades were gradual and easy. No water to be seen anywhere. All creeks and washes were completely dry. Did see the “balancing rock” at 34°35'56.77"N, 112°32'55.18"w (see my photos) Also could see the San Francisco peaks in Flagstaff from the trail at: 34°36'3.70"N, 112°32'46.72"w (see my photos) Our hike measured 5.1 miles. We didn’t even complete the full loop as mapped by AllTrails (see my recording for details)

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Jaime Fisher
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HikingFeeGreat!

Very nice! But only 4 miles not the 5.7 AllTrails says it is

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SAR dot
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Hiking

Easy hike, mostly thru pines. Lots of alternative route choices.

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Muriel Robinette
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Hiking
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Steve McCavour KwRealty
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HikingFeeGreat!

Great hike. One of the best in the area. IMORTANT NOTE: This is a fee area to which I was not aware. it's $5 per vehicle and you drop the money in the slot. I had to drive back down to town to change a 20! So bring a finskie or you'll have to do the same. It's well worth the price of admission!

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Brunke Family
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Hiking

Got a little turned around, but enjoyed every minute!

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Nick O
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Hiking

Went out at 11am on a Saturday. Weather was 70 and overcast. Amazing day to hike, not a bug in sight. Great views, well kept, not a difficult trail. Lots of shade around

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Kevin Cubba
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Hiking
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Heidi Clinger
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Hiking
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Kym Reid
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Hiking
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Kevin Eh
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Hiking
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Joe Schaul
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Hiking

Wonderful!

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Cristhian Mace
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Hiking

This was my first hike in the Granite Mountain Wilderness and it did not disappoint. Hiked it counter-clockwise and added a bit past the lake to round the hike up to 7 miles. It's a very easy hike. The elevation gain is barely noticeable. Didn't see anyone except for within a mile of the trailhead. It rained on me for the majority of the hike, adding a refreshing and welcomed element. Got a bit of thunder too, no lightening thankfully. When it wasn't raining, the cloud cover and breeze made the hike very comfortable. It was so beautiful. Flowers were still blooming in late September. Thank you nature! I loved the mixed oak and conifer woodland. It provided lovely shade for almost half of the hike. All the creek crossings were dry. A local commented how unusual it is for it to be so dry this time of year. The western portion of the trail is more open, less woodland cover. I can see how this part could feel quite exposed if you had no cloud cover to shield you from the sun. I can't wait to come back and tackle this trail in the spring and take advantage of the spring bloom and water in the creeks.

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Terence Peppard
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Hiking
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James Eliason
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Hiking
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Kirk Spry
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Hiking

Nice trail! Mostly shaded and not much incline. Saw an owl and two bucks during the hike.

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Karl Schnell
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Hiking
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Amy Rodriguez
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Hiking

Beautiful hike! Easy and shady.

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Michele Berman
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HikingGreat!No shade

Fun, easy trail! We went counter-clockwise to get all of the elevation done in the beginning, it was worth it. Be aware that there are a lot of cross trails so have your app up to know which ones to take. There is one in particular that it looks like you have to go straight but you actually make a right (where the yellow 'recreation area ends' signs are. About two hundred feet up, you can see the trail resume on the left next to a sign with no letters on it (go straight and you run into driveways and cabins). Starting counter-clockwise, you are able to get a great glimpse of the Balancing Rock. If you go clockwise, there is a chance you can miss it. First half of the trail is more shaded than the second half so bring water. Was a great day, great hike!

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Cody Chewning
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Hiking

Nice little trail. Definitely exposed on the second half so bring plenty of water. Had to use the map several times to know which fork in the trail to take.

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Valerie Icenogle
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HikingRocky
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Jay Weis
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Hiking

Hiked for the first time today, by far the nicest trail ive hiked yet in Arizona!

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Shay Martinez
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Hiking

I’m 23 and I ended up doing this trail with my parents who are in their mid 50s. There are a few steep hills at which my parents needed to stop and rest however, they and myself really loved this trail. The trail is comprised of shade but also has bouts where there is no shade at all. During the trail we crossed a few creeks. Being that we went at the beginning of May the creeks were small and some were dry, but the amount of views and balancing rocks made up for it! Prescott is about a 10 minute drive from the parking area making it easy to get supplies and food afterwards :).

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Kristen Kauffman
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HikingMuddy
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Kristen Kauffman
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HikingMuddy
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Tim Krob
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HikingFloodedMuddySnow

we did the mint wash and combined it to the balancing rock was a great hike, few of the water crossings were about 2ft deep so be prepared with extra socks, but we did just have a week of heavy rain and a snow fall the night before the hike. had to move a tree about 1 mile south of the balancing rock, took about 45 mins, blind corner for the mountain bikers, had to make it safe for everyone.

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