Horton Creek Trail

MODERATE 403 reviews
#43 of 120 trails in

Horton Creek Trail is a 8.5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Payson, Arizona that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. 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.

DISTANCE
8.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2,431 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

camping

fishing

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

over grown

Directions from Payson: Travel east on Hwy. 260 to Forest Road 289. The trail starts in the Upper Tonto Creek Campground. The trailhead is not easy to find from the parking lot if you don't know where to look-- it's actually on the opposite side of the dirt road and up the hill a ways past the campground.

16 hours ago

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.

hiking
2 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.

hiking
8 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
12 days ago

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

14 days ago

great place to be naked!!

hiking
16 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
18 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.

19 days ago

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
25 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
1 month ago

Awesome hiking trail today!

2 months ago

attempted to hike this one on 6/2/2018. closed due to extreme fire restrictions.

hiking
2 months ago

Nice hike!!!Turn right out of the parking lot cross the bridge to the dirt road on the left go up the hill and the trail is on the left,right across from the small campground!Great walk dog loved it!!

hiking
3 months ago

Great trail. An easy hike, the weather was beautiful, and the creak was running.

3 months ago

Love this trail!!! It was nice and cool all day

hiking
3 months ago

Nice day hike

3 months ago

water was cascading through

hiking
3 months ago

Outstanding love this hike

backpacking
3 months ago

Great peaceful hike. Camped overnight... Just beautiful nature.

3 months ago

4 Miles in and 4 miles out. The Creek was very pretty. Worth the drive!

hiking
3 months ago

fantastic hike. Fantastic weather. Water was fresh and clean. Do it again in a heartbeat.

hiking
3 months ago

Easy hike by a beautiful creek. It was very serene to be surrounded by the sounds of the birds, the wind and the water.

nature trips
4 months ago

An easy and beautiful hike with Creek access!

4 months ago

Nice hike, pretty easy for me. Camped overnight, beautiful and quiet.

hiking
4 months ago

Incredible hike with shade from the pines and sounds from the creek. Didn't want to leave.

hiking
4 months ago

This was such an amazing day! We went with a group who had kiddos so they left us around mile 2 but we ventured on. AllTrails says it’s 6.7 miles but we clocked in 8 miles with a gain of 1,245 feet & so worth it. Although there were a ton of cars in the lot the trail was pretty quiet with just the sound of the water flowing down the creek in the background. There were at least half a dozen little waterfalls along the way & we did stop a couple times for a snack and just for a moment of relaxation; with a nice, crisp breeze to keep you cool. We’d definitely do this one again!

4 months ago

Beautiful. Just beautiful.

4 months ago

So amazing and beautiful! Would definitely hike again!

hiking
4 months ago

Great hike! Took the kids and they had a blast playing in the water. Hike is easy as it slowly increases in elevation. Lots of places to stop along the creek and have lunch, wade in the water. Highly recommend this hike.

4 months ago

Horton creek is dry right now. Was hoping for more water. Park in the lot and then walk up the dirt road (by Tonto Creek) and the trail is 50 feet up the dirt road on the left side. You will see the trail head sign on the dirt road.

4 months ago

Beautiful! definitely be doing this hike again!

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