pack for all kinds of weather
The weather can vary sometimes 30+ degrees between night and day. Anywhere from 9 degrees F. in the winter low to 30 degrees F. in the winter high. Anywhere from 40 degrees F. summer low to 80 degrees F. summer high. etc. just be prepared for chilly or warm. If you are able to walk you may want to not forget good walking/hiking shoes, the opportunities for scenic hikes/walks is wonderful in and around the payson area. Like I always say... Always carry a role of toilet paper with you.
Tonto Natural Bridge
Tonto Natural Bridge is believed to be the largest natural travertine bridge in the world. The bridge stands 183 feet high over a 400-foot long tunnel that measures 150 feet at its widest point. The bridge is very impressive to look at, with a waterfall and moss covered rocks below. Pine Creek meanders through the cave.
Jumping Around Payson!
It was another nice weekend off, so we decided to drive over to Payson from Phoenix, and marvel at the Tonto Natural Travertine Bridge (12 miles north of Payson off Highway 87).
There are several scenic attractions around Payson which include the Mongolian Rim, Tonto National Forest, trout streams, Fossil Creek....and the oldest standing school in Arizona ---- "Strawberry Schoolhouse" which the Jumpingtwins enjoyed visiting and jumping at (after classes of course, hehehe)....
Payson is a small town of about 12,000 people. It's less than 100 miles away from Phoenix, just south of the Mogollon Rim. A perfect place from which to visit the rim (the Mogollon Rim Visitor Center is only 20 miles east) or have a look at the Tonto Natural Bridge.
Waterfall Trail at Tonto Natural Bridge State Park
The Waterfall Trail is a short steep hike starting with a steep dirt path which in turn becomes steep stairs. It is aprox. 300 feet to the end of the trail. t
The trail starts out as a steep dirt path
The trail then becomes a set of steep stairs. This photo is shot going back up the stairs. The stairs are steep and be careful at the bottom because it is slippery as well.
Lichen covers the large boulders and the inside of the watery cave.
Pictures really do not do this park justice, you have to see it in person. The waterfall at the end of the trail is enchanting. The water falls in a steady stream, cascading off of moss covered rocks, peeking past the waterfall you can see the wet cool cave.
A glimpse inside the cave. The water feels good as it splashes.
The hike is steep, but if my four year old can hike it, well I think most people can as well. Wear good hiking shoes, and be aware that it is slippery towards the bottom.
Enjoy the Quiet of the woods!