Coronado Trail Scenic Byway: Springerville to Morenci

MODERATE 4 reviews

Coronado Trail Scenic Byway: Springerville to Morenci is a 116.4 mile lightly trafficked point-to-point trail located near Clifton, Arizona that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for scenic driving and off road driving and is accessible year-round.

DISTANCE
116.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
13756 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Point to Point

kid friendly

off road driving

scenic driving

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

scenic driving
9 days ago

This is definitely a worth while drive, but be sure to allow plenty of time. It is slow going as there are endless switchbacks and sharp corners along the road. In fact, there are many places where you probably won't be going any faster than 20-30 miles an hour due to this. Very scenic, with access to lots of side roads and trails all over this national forest. I've done this drive many times, both directions. If you are a motorcycle enthusiast, this is your road as it has lots of twistys!! If going south, you will start up in the high country around Alpine. Forest, lakes, streams, meadows and an elevation of around 9000'. And it will drop all the way down to Clifton which has you back in the desert. When you get close to Clifton, the highway actually goes right through the Morenci Copper mine there. You actually have to stop for Haul trucks that cross right over the main highway. It's pretty surreal. And the mine is HUGE. It is the largest open pit copper mine in North America, and the 3rd largest in the world. It is in stark contrast to the beauty this drive has at higher elevations, but is something to see regardless. This is a good way to see how dramatic the vegetation changes in AZ. From cactus to tall pines, or vice versa. Be aware of the weather in winter though, the upper reaches of this road can be treacherous after a winter storm. And there is literally no services for miles and miles!!

scenic driving
Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Great drive. unlimited hiking in the area.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

scenic driving
Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Most of this ride is in the almost 3,000,000 acre Apache Sitgreaves National Forest near the New Mexico - Arizona border. You may not have thought of Arizona as having beautiful lakes and forests but it is all here. I want to come back and hike a lot of the hiking and backpacking trails.