The trails within the White Mountains Trail System are multi-use trails meaning that foot hiking, mountain biking and even equestrian use are permitted. So use caution. There are over 180 miles of developed trails within the White Mountains System and most are between 8 and 16 miles in length, although there are options for making the trails longer or shorter depending upon time, skill and physical condition. Hikers and bikers can bypass some of the tricky areas.

A particular feature of the trails in the White Mountains Trail System is that all trails are connected by either connector trails of Forest Roads or other trails in the system. It is, therefore, possible to hike or bike the entire 180-mile system without interruption. It is important to note that the 2002 Rodeo-Chideski Fire adversely affected some trails but most remain in their original pristine condition. Many of the trails are considered remote and get a little action, so in many cases, you may find yourself alone.

The White Mountains are strikingly beautiful, lushly forested and have a wide range of elevations from about 6,500 feet to over 11,000 feet depending upon the area.

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Trail maps can be purchased at the Lakeside Ranger Station or Springerville Ranger District:

Lakeside Ranger Station
2022 West White Mountain Blvd
Lakeside, AZ 85929
(928) 368-2100

Springerville Ranger District
165 S. Mountain Ave.
Springerville, AZ 85938
(928) 333-6200  

Click now for more information on the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests.  


Saffel Canyon Trail

Saffel Canyon Trail, near Eagar, includes some of the most spectacular views in the White Mountains. The trail begins at an elevation of 7,600 feet and climbs to 9,400 feet at Pat Knoll.

Information: Distance is 25 miles (round trip). Difficulty level is moderate. The trail goes through three distinct vegetation zones: Pinyon-juniper, ponderosa pine, and mixed conifer. There is trailhead parking that accommodates trailers; trailhead has two picnic ramadas, restroom, and a “tot lot” where young riders can learn some basic ATV skills. Trail access near Eagar.




Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest

Springerville Ranger District

(928) 333-6200

To learn more about ATV laws and places to ride, click now to download the Arizona Off-Highway Guide, OHV Laws and Places to Ride.

The Maverick Motorized Trail

The Maverick Motorized Trail spans almost 50 miles through the diverse habitats of the Lakeside Ranger District.  From flat, open grasslands to hilly and rocky terrain, the trail winds through mostly cool and green ponderosa pine forest and some pinon-juniper woodland with breathtaking views of the high White Mountains.  Starting from the Sky Hi Trailhead (1) North of Pinetop, the trail runs through mostly ponderosa pine forested areas and some aspen can also be seen.  Just past thePanorama Trailhead(2), the rider has the option to continue on the Maverick Trail or loop around Porter Mountain for about 11 additional miles, making the total riding experience right at 60 miles when arriving at the West end of the trail at the Clay Springs Trailhead(5). The entire trail and loop is marked with orange diamond-shaped markers. One more trailhead provides direct access to the Porter Mountain Loop; it is located at Twin Chimneys(3), just off Porter Mountain Road. One other intermediate trailhead on the main Maverick Trail is located at the intersection of Burton Road and Lone Pine Dam Road (4). Camping is not allowed at the trailheads, and dispersed camping along the trail itself is extremely limited.  At present, a map of the trail may be obtained at the Lakeside Ranger District Office or at the Show Low Chamber of Commerce.  A brochure containing all applicable Arizona State laws may be obtained from the Arizona Game and Fish Office in Pinetop and also at the chambers. Future plans for the trail include extensions to the East to the Springerville area and to the West to the Heber/Overgaard area with loops into the towns along the route.

(1)  N34 08.503 W109 53.701

(2)  N34 12.158 W109 55.949

(3)  N34 11.106 W109 57.952

(4)  N34 19.910 W110 07.000

(5)  N34 12.561 W110 16.820

Directions to Sky-Hi Trailhead (1): Turn onto Buck Springs Road off Highway 260 in Pinetop, travel .5 miles to Sky Hi Road, turn left for 2 miles to the trailhead on the left.


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