The Mogollon Rim in Arizona is an area that we have hiked, camped, and fished for many years and will continue to visit into the future. We enjoy the views from the Southern edge of Colorado Plateau. The Ponderosa pine forest surrounds you with great shade trees in the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest.
If you are flying in at Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport we suggest you put Woods Canyon Lake Recreation Area in your GPS. That will get you to the correct area. Note the road for the scenic drive is dirt, though graded. Consider that when renting a vehicle.
We like to stop in Payson to have a meal and pick up food supplies from the grocery stores.
Next, you can stop at the Rim Visitor Information Station. It is on the south side of Highway 260 approximately 32 miles east of Payson per the website.
If you only have a day to spend in the area then you can start on the scenic drive of the Rim. The science drive is about 2 hours across the top of the Rim. Remember that you might want to stop at lookouts or have a picnic.
If you have a few days then check out the following lakes for camping, hiking, and fishing. We have camped, hiked and fished at all 3 lakes many times and will continue to do so.
Woods Canyon Lake is a location that you will want to make reservations many months in advance. It has the most amenities and therefore fills up quickly. There is a fee for the campsites. For more information visit: https://www.recreation.gov/camping/campgrounds/232205
Bear Canyon Lake has dispersed camping. First come first served. For more information visit: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/asnf/recreation/camping-cabins/recarea/?recid=44681&actid=34
Knoll Lake has camping sites and fees. For more information visit: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/coconino/recarea/?recid=54920
Going Back to Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport
After you drive on the Rim road you will come out to AZ87. Then plug in Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport into your GPS and head back down.
The Mogollon Rim Arizona Scenic Drive
There have been times when we would travel the scenic drive in a day. Other times we camp. It depends on how much time we have.
Have you visited the Mogollon Rim in Arizona?
34 thoughts on “The Mogollon Rim Arizona Scenic Drive”
Arizona has so much natural beauty. We can’t wait to get back there. Thanks for sharing!
Arizona welcomes you to come back.
Looks like a beautiful area. Wonderful views.
Yes, great views.
What a beautiful area – I’ve never visited, but it looks like a place we would really enjoy.
I love anywhere with a lake but I am not much of a camper! These views would change my mind though. Thanks for the tips!
There are RV areas too!
Lovely! I haven’t been there in years… maybe need to revisit!
It is time to visit.
Always looking for new hiking adventure. Thanks!
Sounds like a great place to check out! Thanks for sharing!
You are welcome.:-)
Always looking for scenic drives and scenic hikes…will definitely check this out when we visit Arizona next time.
It is fun to see the wildlife.
I have never been to Arizona but everything you post makes me want to go visit!
We are coming into the cooler seasons. If you visit think about Nov-May
Looks great. Will have to put on my list if I visit Arizona.
You would enjoy the area.
This looks like a beautiful scenic drive! It would be fun to stop at a lake and camp too!
It is good to take a break and visit a lake while on the drive.
Arizona looks beautiful, read many things about it now, but need to just go!
We have been to Arizona but never to this area. I love learning about new places to travel to. I will save this post for future visits for sure!
It is a nice drive and cooler temperatures than the Phoenix valley.
Years ago, when our kids were young, we camped at Woods Canyon Lake each Fall with cub scouts. A very nice camping location.
Woods Canyon Lake is great. Now, you have to reservice campsite months in advance.
Wow what a great scenic drive this looks like thanks for sharing.
It is also nice to see wildlife.
This is such a beautiful area! I will put this on my “to visit” list for when I get to go to Arizona. I want to go!
You will enjoy the drive.
Arizona is a state that I have not visited yet. It looks like it holds a lot of natural beauty, which I enjoy.
The state of Arizona has many diverse landscapes.
What a beautiful drive!! I love a good road trip with great scenery!