Salome Wilderness Trails

MODERATE 5 reviews
#1 of 2 trails in

Salome Wilderness Trails is a 5.1 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Payson, Arizona that offers scenic views and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round.

DISTANCE
5.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1358 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

views

hiking
1 month ago

This was an absolutely wonderful canyon to go through. We went through in early May, and the water level and weather was perfect. We wore 3mm full wetsuits, and they kept us at the perfect temperature. The hike into the canyon is easy-- about 2 miles downhill. Once you enter the canyon, you have roughly a mile of wading/swimming. Be sure to bring gloves, river shoes/neoprene socks, helmets (as the waters can be rough - you dont want to hit your head!), and a dry bag for your gear. You WILL be completely submerged for at least part of this trek. There are no technical canyoneering skills required until the very end. You will need to be sure and bring a harnass, at least 100 feet of rope, a biner, and a belay device. You will have to rappel down a 40ft waterfall to exit the canyon. When we were there, the water level was high enough to jump, and some people were jumping (we rappelled), but be aware that the water level might not be high enough to jump. So, you need to come prepared to rappel just in case. If you don't, there is a good chance you could get stuck with no way out! I think mid-spring (April/May/June) is the best time to go through the Jug as the water is high enough but not too high. Also, less risk of monsoon. The only part about this canyon I didn't enjoy were the wasps - there were a bunch of wasps towards the beginning of the route drinking from the pools. If you are allergic, be sure to bring you Epipen just in case!

ProTip- when you turn off the highway onto A-Cross road, you will drive across a stream. If you are comfortable crossing the stream in your vehicle, the water levels in the canyon are probably safe. If not, the water levels are not safe and you should try again another day!

4 months ago

this trail was a lot of fun.

hiking
9 months ago

Fun. Bring water. I'd also bring a rope and some type of harness. There was a line to use but weather may one day make it loose it's strength

Saturday, January 25, 2014

This hike was amazing! Once you reach the river it's lots of swimming, water slides and beautiful rock formations around you. At the very end of this hike, you will want be prepared for a 40 foot drop. Sometimes the water is high enough to jump, but most of the time you will need to rappel down with rock climbing equipment. This hike took us all day from driving to it to driving home, the hike itself took roughly 5 hours to complete but well worth my day!

hiking
Tuesday, March 16, 2010

This review is about Salome Jug:
The Jug is located in the rugged, mountainous Salome Wilderness of Tonto National Forest, on the northeast side of Roosevelt Lake -- land of saguaros, prickly pear and ocatillo, and, in the summer months, rock almost too hot to touch.
The two-mile hike in, all but about a half-mile of which is the same old jeep trail as the two-mile hike out, was a scorcher in the mid-day sun. We each cached a few liters of water by a large boulder at the point where we'd rejoin the trail on the way out. My hiking companions and I brought cooler bags to hold our stashed water bottles, which we'd frozen the night before. We then continued another quarter-mile to the top of Salome Jug and the first, slime-covered pool. Green gunk or no, it was certainly refreshing and a nice partly-shaded spot for a snack.
The surface scum (a/k/a slime, gunk and algae) is a summer occurrence, when water levels are low. The most popular time to visit Salome Jug is in May and June, when the water is clear and not too cold, and the flow rate is moderate. Even in the middle of summer, though, the trip through the Jug entails almost continual wading and swimming, and the largest, deepest shaded pools are cool and virtually algae-free. This trip is not possible -- or at least not at all advisable -- during the winter, when flow rate is high.
If there was a high-point in the adventure for me, it was the 30-foot rappel into the main pool, near the end of the Jug; although the 20-foot traverse along the sloped shelf -- sloped towards the cliff, that is -- at the top of the rappel made me nervous. But we set up a rope from a fixed bolt near the start of the traverse over to the rappel bolt, and we each in turn hooked a caribbeaner onto the rope for safety.
At the bottom of the "rap," we enjoyed some swim-time in the 50-yard-long main pool, where bats squeaked from crevices in the vertical walls and, every so often if I were still, little fish tickled my legs. My companions did some cliff-jumping while I floated on my daypack.
After several more deep pools and a few minor downclimb, we came to the final pool, where the gorge ends and the view opens up towards the wide valley and Roosevelt Lake in the distance. We followed the switchbacks up to the bluff, where we rejoined the Jug Trail and picked up our water cache. All ice had melted, but the bottles were still cool. By the time I reached the parking area, what little water I had left was hot. I strongly recommend bringing at least four liters per person on this hike, and a water filter wouldn't be a bad idea either, especially in the hottest months. And, of course, don't forget your sunblock!