Hiking Hotspots Near Talking Rock

Fall is a time to celebrate the outdoors. With cooler temperatures and amazing views of the changing foliage, there is no reason not to venture out and explore one of the 400 hiking, mountain biking and equestrian trails in and around the Prescott area.

If you have never had the pleasure of getting out beyond the pavement but still seek a little adventure, we have a few must-see scenic spots that every Talking Rock resident should visit.

Prescott’s most popular hike, Thumb Butte Trail #33, located just a few miles west of downtown in the Prescott National Forest, offers spectacular views of the Bradshaw and Sierra Prieta mountains, Granite Mountain, Mingus Mountain and the San Francisco Peaks. The two-mile trail takes you from pine forests to thin forests of oak, juniper and manzanita, to a ridge just below the rocky crest of Thumb Butte, offering amazing panoramic views of the surrounding area.

A short but unforgettable hike, Lynx Creek Ruin Trail, about ¾ of a mile long, is easily accessible from Walker Road off Route 69 and leads to an observation deck overlooking the prehistoric Lynx Creek Ruins, a 700-year-old site where a thriving Native American community built stone and mud pueblos along the adjoining hilltops. This scenic hike is open year-around and is safe for hikers of all levels.

For those who seek a longer trek, the four-mile Prescott Peavine National Trail, originally built by the Santa Fe Railway in 1893, is perfect for hiking, biking or horseback riding. This trail is one of 1,600 trails supported by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, a non-profit organization that works to create a nationwide network of trails from former railways and connecting corridors. What’s nice about this trail is that it offers amazing views of Watson Lake and the impressive geologic wonders of Granite Dells’ ancient rocks weathered into beautifully smooth formations.

Are there are any trails you get excited to lace up your boots for?