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This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Turkey Creek - Mogollon Rim, AZ

no permit
116 18 0
Guide 18 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Payson > Clints Well
3.2 of 5 by 6
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Difficulty 2.5 of 5
Distance One Way 6.41 miles
Trailhead Elevation 7,848 feet
Elevation Gain -650 feet
Accumulated Gain 244 feet
Kokopelli Seeds 7.22
Interest Off Trail Hiking & Seasonal Creek
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9  2019-08-10
Turkey Beaver Loop
12  2019-08-10
Turkey Beaver Loop
4  2019-05-18 chumley
10  2018-10-20
Fall Colors
25  2018-10-06
Horton Spring - Turkey - Beaver - Babe Haught
8  2018-05-06
Turkey-Open Draw-Gentry
8  2017-05-06
Rattlesnake Beaver Turkey
15  2016-10-01
Turkey Beaver Wander
Page 1,  2
Author HAZ_Hikebot
author avatar Guides 16,882
Routes 16,052
Photos 24
Trips 1 map ( 6 miles )
Age 22 Male Gender
Location TrailDEX, HAZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Sep, May, Jun, Aug
Sun  6:11am - 6:23pm
Official Route
9 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby

Likely In-Season!
This is NOT A TRAIL!

Occasional wildlife paths parallel this drainage along an intermittent stream. It is mostly open and grassy, but can be narrow and overgrown with rocky footing in some stretches.

Stats reflect travel from FR300 to the junction with Beaver Canyon, but you can continue to follow Turkey Creek downstream an additional mile to FR91 road access at McGuire Crossing, or an additional 3.5 miles to its terminus at Gentry Canyon.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2018-07-14 HAZ_Hikebot

    One-Way Notice
    This hike is listed as One-Way.

    When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Most recent Triplog Reviews
    Turkey Creek - Mogollon Rim
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Turkey Beaver Loop
    Close call, Turtle vs. Deer on the Beeline to begin the day just north of Rye. A big buck in velvet.
    No need for more coffee at this point.

    We did this loop CW, starting in Turkey Creek. Easy walikin' for the most part, through the wet morning foliage.
    The prevalent flora on the day were the large patches of Yellow Cone flower.

    We jumped out and up on a ridge to check out an area we'd been to last year, then back down into Turkey Creek.

    Once in Beaver Canyon, it was a "bit boldery" for a while. We would not hit the sidewalk like part for awhile.

    Closer to Beaver Park, we hit a steady rain for about 20 min.

    We decided to jump out, up a side canyon, directly back to the Car.

    This hike is an 8-9 in the fall with lower temps/humidity and the colors. This time of year, a 6-7 with sweaty temps in the 70's
    Turkey Creek - Mogollon Rim
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    Rattlesnake Beaver Turkey
    I was looking for something around 10 miles and not too warm. Water was a bonus. This area always intrigues.

    I mapped a route that accessed the Wildlife Area from a different route ... in the canyons on either side of Rattlesnake Ridge. Turns out we decided to hit the road on the ridge on the return instead of staying in the drainage.

    Didn't see any bears or coyotes today (as we did last fall), but did see a couple of huge turkey feathers and also managed to sneak up on a nice herd of elk, managing to split them into different directions, including at least one big buck.

    Speaking of big bucks, we found one that a lion had gotten to relatively recently. I'd guess it was in the fall, with winter preserving the remains. Nice 11-point buck at one time. A pretty healthy guy based on my inexperienced knowledge of dental records!

    The aspens had mostly sprouted, but the oaks had not. And the grass was mostly still winter dormant, though it won't take more than a couple of weeks before it has fully greened up.

    Thanks to Kyle for driving. I can't remember the last time I was a passenger! :sweat:
    Turkey Creek - Mogollon Rim
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Rattlesnake Beaver Turkey
    I love this area more and more every time we explore it. We parked at the bottom of FR415 and dropped into the little canyon north of Rattlesnake Ridge. Its a little thick in parts but opens up into nice areas with lots of water. We took it all the way to Beaver Park and took Beaver Canyon north a while until we found a good spot to climb up to Turkey-Beaver Ridge. We headed cross country and utilized some of the old roads and finally dropped down into Turkey Creek. We headed south a bit and found a spot to climb back up the ridge. We headed back over towards Beaver Canyon and dropped back in near the power lines. From there, Chumley and 9L took the canyon just south of Rattlesnake Ridge for a bit and then bushwacked up to 415. I opted to take 415 the whole way. 415 drops into Beaver Park and I wanted to scout the condition of the road for possible future camping spots. I met back up with Chumley and 9L on the way back to the car. Lily and BrunoP had a great time with all the water but were ready for some napping on the drive home. Lily has been having some health problems lately which seem to be improving-- it was nice to see her having some fun.
    Turkey Creek - Mogollon Rim
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Turkey Beaver Wander
    After hearing that the maples on the rim were turning way ahead of normal, I decided it would be fun to go check out some new areas. I put together a crazy track that bounced from one colorful grove to another knowing that the (might-as-well-be-a-wilderness) Turkey Beaver Wildlife Habitat is full of great cross country travel, easy ridges, open draws, and an absolute multitude of old roadbeds from the wayback machine that would make getting around pretty easy.

    I'm not sure what to say about the colors. Some are done. Some are prime. Some haven't even considered starting yet. I think next weekend will be great. And the weekend after. It might still be good in three weeks in some places. It's just so very odd based on my past experiences in this area. Nonetheless, there was an abundance of color and it was a great day to wander this non-motorized Wildlife Habitat.

    Speaking of wildlife, we managed to see a huge elk buck but I wasn't able to count how many points or get a photo. Next we crested a ridge and spooked a BIG black bear. Not too much later, we encountered three more bears (a mom and two cubs) who scurried up the opposite hill from us. Not three minutes later we saw three bears AGAIN -- a mom and two cubs. Were they the same we had just seen? I can't imagine there are two moms each with two sets of cubs in such close proximity! Then again, what kind of bear with two cubs who runs from five people and a dog drops back down into a draw just 1/4 mile away? I gotta believe they were the same, but still seems odd to me. (Not to mention they were meandering up the hill when we last saw them, but would have had to run at a pretty good clip to be where we saw them next. They are certainly capable of that kind of travel, but it doesn't fit with what we saw of them as they scurried away).

    So, anyway, next we saw two coyotes in the draw, with at least a half dozen huge turkey vultures above. Something smelled bad so I assume they were all feasting on a carcass of something nearby.

    I asked some hunters what the season was, and was told it's turkey and squirrel. We didn't see any turkey, but there were a lot of squirrel.

    Great day up here. I love this area, and I will be back for sure! :y:
    Turkey Creek - Mogollon Rim
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    The Turkey Beaver Gentry
    Chumley put together a great off-trail loop with the purpose of seeing some nice fall colors up on the Mogollon Rim. This bounced us up and around between nice draws, old road bed, and cross country travel. We definitely saw some patches of great color-- unfortunately I left my camera in the car. It was a particularly great wildlife day-- elk hollering at us all day, a couple coyote, and two bear encounters (one alone and a mama with cubs). Lily likes wildlife :D
    Turkey Creek - Mogollon Rim
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    Turkey Beavers
    Me and a buddy wanted to take the dogs backpacking. Holiday weekend? There's gonna be people everywhere on the rim... except here. We hiked through Beaver Canyon first. The dogs had a blast with all the water and running through the tall grass in Beaver Park. Some elk crashed through the creek and across the canyon at one point. My friend is a mushroom forager and he was in heaven down there-- we had some nice additions for dinner.

    We had decided on a longer first day and short second day mostly because of where I thought there would be guaranteed room for camping. Though, if we had wanted a little more even split-- there was a fairly nice space not too far before the two canyons meet. We ended up doing about 9.5 miles and camping along Turkey Creek where the canyon opens up for a while.

    We woke up early to the mooing and squeaking of elk and had some breakfast and coffee. We had a short day so we took our time and hoped the dewy tents would dry out a bit-- we were jealous of the sun hitting early on the other side of the creek. In hindsight, that would have been the smarter campsite. We packed up and headed up creek. As the creek closes in, the hiking became a bit tedious. We came across a pretty nice looking elk trail that appeared to make its way to the top of the ridge. I looked at the topo and it seemed like the going would be cake up top. I was right-- once we made it to the top life was quick and easy. There were some scattered aspens up there and some really nice and dense young oak forest. We stayed on top of the ridge and headed towards the powerlines where we would walk the old access road back to 300.

    We had pretty good wildlife viewing-- elk in Beaver Canyon and up on the ridge and a fairly large and handsome coyote sprinting across the field in Turkey Creek (luckily unnoticed by both dogs). The Beaver Turkey Ridge Wildlife Habitat Area is a little gem of a spot up on the rim that I plan to continue to explore more.

    I was home in central Phoenix at 1:30 :D
    Turkey Creek - Mogollon Rim
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    Beaver Cyn / Turkey Creek Loop
    It was a beautiful day to be up on the rim. This was my second time down in the Turkey Creek Beaver Canyon Wildlife Area. I brought along Lily and a couple of friends. We had a bit of a time crunch so it seemed like a good idea to shortcut the loop a bit by exiting Beaver Canyon at Turkey Crossing instead of going all the way to the convergence. We then went across the ridge and dropped into Turkey Creek. It was a bit more annoying than expected and saved us a little distance but maybe not so much time. It was a good route but a little looser than planned. My friends were troopers but everyone was obviously happy to be down in the creek. We eventually made it to our exit point and everyone was ready to be finished but had really enjoyed the day. I really love this loop and can't believe more people haven't explored it.
    Turkey Creek - Mogollon Rim
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    This was a real treat. No other way to put it. Turkey Creek is great from the top down for the first 4-5 miles before turning a bit dry and rocky. But once you turn south in Beaver Canyon it is nothing but joy.

    We got rained on for a few hours, but it was generally light. Twice I put on my rain jacket for 10-15 minutes, but otherwise it was nice to enjoy the rain without it. Thunder rumbled all afternoon, but only two strikes were under a mile so there wasn't ever much anxiety.

    By descending Turkey Creek and returning via Beaver Canyon, we followed the circumference of the Beaver-Turkey Wildlife area, established in 1985. The establishment of this area closed FR92, which we crossed at Turkey Crossing. This was once a "major" forest road, and 30 years of no use has reclaimed it somewhat.

    Beaver Park is bisected by 115kV power lines but they are surprisingly unobtrusive. The upper end of Beaver Canyon has an exclosure area, but it hasn't been maintained in many years and the fencing is down in several areas.

    We spooked a single elk that was probably trying to hide from us until we got too close and it finally decided to bail. It was less than 50 feet from us before we saw it, and it was a new experience for me to be hiking with two dogs who made no attempt to chase it! :whistle:

    Good trip. I'd like to check this area out some more. Thanks for driving 9L. I know that dirt and dog hair are not things that your Jeep enjoys. :)

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    FR / Dirt Road / Gravel - Car Okay

    To hike
    Hike begins at the high-voltage power lines where they cross FR 300 about 16 miles west of Hwy 260.
    page created by chumley on Aug 16 2015 6:19 pm
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