Trails Program

2015 Arizona Trails Plan

Arizona State Parks 2015 Trails PlanEvery five years, the recreational trails staff at Arizona State Parks prepares an information-filled report concerning Arizona's motorized and non-motorized trails and their users.  This plan includes recommendations and action strategies to protect and enhance trails throughout the state including those in local city, county and state parks, as well as those on National Forest and Bureau of Land Management lands.  Learn about the most common non-motorized and motorized recreation pursuits in Arizona. Download the Trails Plan (PDF Document 2.9 MB PDF)

The priority recommendations listed in the plan will be used to develop grant rating criteria and distribute monies from the Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Fund and the federal Recreational Trails Program.


Trail of the Month - National Scenic Arizona Trail, Mormon Lake Passage, #30 - July 2015

Mormon Lodge and Mountain Bikers along the AZ TrailMormon Lake Passage, of the Arizona National Scenic Trail (AZNST), is a popular northern Arizona summer get-away that attracts many hikers, backpackers, trail runners, mountain bikers, equestrians, nature photographers and other nature lovers to cooler mountain temperatures. The almost 34-mile trail, is predominantly shaded by Ponderosa pine and Aspen trees that are bountiful in this forested area of the Coconino National Forest.

This mountain area has some of the highest elevations found along the AZ Trail, reaching elevations of 7,800 feet in some sections. This Passage is very appealing to mountain bikers because of its continuously long miles of predominantly single-track trail. Equestrians can be found riding along the trail using Mormon Lake Lodge as their starting point.

The starting point of this Passage is found at Forest Road 92, just east of paved Forest Highway 3, (Lake Mary Road at the metal AZ Trail sign at the Gooseberry Springs Trailhead. The Trail proceeds north, crosses through gates and over the paved FH 3, and alternates between single track trail and forest roadways, meandering between wooded areas and vast, scenic open meadows. The Trail reaches Forest Road 219 at mile 7.7, and again at 7.9, where Navajo Spring Trail leads one mile down to Mormon Lake Village and Mormon Lake Lodge, an excellent resupply location for through hikers, and an ideal location for shuttling back to the Gooseberry Spring Trailhead.

Due to the length of the Passage, many hikers and backpackers often complete this passage by dividing it into three sections.

Forest Road 219 (passage mile 7.1) or Mormon Lake Village
Forest Road 240 (passage mile 12.5);
Forest Road 651 (passage mile 22.3)

For more details on this AZNST Passge visit the AZ Trail website. You can accesss printable online maps, mapping apps and GPS download data for your mobile phone or GPS device.

One highlight of this Trail Passage is its connection with Arizona Trail founder, Dale Shewalter. He spent a lot of time helping build the Arizona Trail in this area, and two memorial benches and a wonderful plaque have been recently installed at Mormon Lake Lodge by Shewalter family members in remembrance of his successful vision for the Arizona Trail. Shewalter passed away in 2010, only several years before the final miles of the Arizona Trail were completed in 2012. This memorial bench area provides a special place for contemplation and reverence in honor of this visionary founder of the 800-mile Arizona National Scenic Trail.
AZ Trail Founder, Dale Shewalter AZ Trail, Dale Shewalter, Memorial

Please practice safe Hiking: Plan your trip out, tell a friend when you're leaving/returning, bring plenty of food, water & wear appropriate footwear.

Welcome to the Arizona State Trails Program. Arizona State Parks' Trails Program provides a number of benefits for trail users, organizations, and communities.

  • Provides technical assistance to agencies and organizations
  • Hosts trail conferences, trainings and education events 
  • Serves as a clearinghouse for statewide trail information
  • Manages a State Trails System and statewide trails advisory committee
  • Conducts statewide trail research that guides the expenditure of trail grant funds

Explore the different trail categories below

Arizona Trails 2010 Plan

Every five years, the agency prepares a statewide trails plan. The Final version is done and has been released. Learn More

Historic Trails of Arizona

Historic trails have many stories to tell of countless families who endured hardships of early overland travel in search of a better life in Arizona. Learn More

Top Trails

Members of the ASCOT have compiled some of their favorite hikes with vivid trail descriptions. Explore your state by trying out a new hiking trail today. Learn More

State Trails System

The State Trails System promotes quality, non-motorized trails that are of special interest and significance to Arizona's residents and visitors. Learn More

Arizona Trail

The Arizona Trail is an 807 mile scenic trail that crosses Arizona, from Mexico to Utah. It links deserts, mountains, canyons, communities, and people. Learn More

Trails on State Trust Land

State Trust Land is not Public Land. Trust land is different from public land such as parks or National Forests. Learn More

Share the Trail

Understanding shared-use trail etiquette can make hiking, biking, and riding trails more enjoyable for everyone. Learn More

Workshops & Conferences

Trail-related workshops, conferences, and trainings are a great way to learn new skills and develop an understanding of trail system challenges. Learn More

Trail Links & Partners

Website links for online resources including national organizations, state programs, and walking & bicycling partners. Learn More

Trail Grants

Arizona State Parks administers Grant Programs for both non-motorized and motorized trails. Learn More


ASCOT promotes, develops, and preserves non-motorized trails throughout the state for mountain bikers, hikers, equestrians, and water trail users. Learn More

Photography Contest

Trails Photography Contest celebrates the beauty of Arizona and the varied experiences of trails and trail users. See Winners from the 2007 cycle. Learn More
Trail Construction

Helpful resources to help you get started planning either a single trail or a comprehensive trails plan. Learn More

Trails Main Categories

Historic Trails of Arizona
State Trails System
Arizona Trail
Top Trails
Trails on State Trust Land
Share the Trail
Workshops & Conferences
Trail Links & Partners
Trail Grants
ASCOT Photography Contest
Trail Planning & Construction

Contact the Trails Program

Comments or questions please contact:

State Trails Coordinator
1300 W. Washington Street
Phoenix, AZ 85007

(602) 542-7116

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