The Perfect Arizona Summer Getaway
Ah, the Mogollon Rim. The perfect escape from the concrete jungle that is Phoenix, Arizona. Only about two and a half hours away from Phoenix, you can be surrounded my towering pines, and a cool breeze to escape the summer heat. The Mogollon Rim marks the southern boundary of the Colorado Plateau, and the views are spectacular. Did you say Friday half-day? All you need is a full tank of gas, your camping supplies, and whatever delicious goodies you decide to pack for the trip.
While you can find established campgrounds and sites throughout the Rim Lakes and Payson area, my favorite thing to do is venture out, get lost, and find the perfect spot for some dispersed camping.
Mogollon Rim Dispersed Camping
Dispersed camping, for the newbies out there, is just you and the wilderness. There are no toilets, no showers, no water. You pack in, and you pack out. Navigating the area can be a little intimidating, especially for the first time, but fret not, it’s a lot easier now with GPS and mapping your route via Google beforehand (trust me, you’ll want to do this, because once you get up to the rim, cell service is very limited).
For ideas on where you can do some dispersed camping along the Mogollon Rim, first, download a Coconino National Forest motor vehicle use map. The areas you can camp around are highlighted on the map via dots on either side of the forest roads. Here is also an example of what dispersed camping areas look like on the map. Last but not least, before you go on your adventure, be sure to review the dispersed camping guidelines.
Here are some pictures from my favorite camping spot along the Mogollon Rim.