Murray Basin, AZ | HikeArizona
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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.

Murray Basin, AZ

Guide 17 Triplogs  0 Topics
  4 of 5 
no permit
35 17 0
Abbey's Way Trail #151
Abbey's Way Trail #151
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Difficulty 1.5 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Round Trip 15 miles
Trailhead Elevation 7,400 feet
Elevation Gain 700 feet
Accumulated Gain 800 feet
Kokopelli Seeds 19
Backpack No
feature photo
Photos Viewed All MineFollowing
4  2018-09-14 Sun_Ray
5  2010-01-24 azbackpackr
3  2010-01-09
Round Mountain - Eagar
15  2009-08-01
Water Canyon to Sipe
8  2004-11-22 BelladonnaTook
author avatar Guides 12
Routes 9
Photos 1,291
Trips 58 map ( 568 miles )
Age 75 Male Gender
Location Lakeside, AZ
Associated Areas
list map done
Alpine Region
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred Oct, Apr, May, Sep → 8 AM
Seasons   ALL
Sun  6:13am - 5:59pm
0 Alternative

Hills, knolls and mountains
by BelladonnaTook

  Likely In-Season!
Murray Basin Recreation Area is one of Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest's most recent projects. So recent that it's not mentioned on the official website; and the people who answer the phone at the Springerville Ranger District know next to nothing about it.

Murray Basin and the surrounding hills, knolls, and mountains appear to occupy about 5,000 acres of pinon and juniper forest and grassland just south of the conjoined communities of Eagar and Springerville. The basin itself lies at about 7,200 feet elevation, and Flat Top Mountain, the highest point, reaches above 8,100 feet. The trail system comprises three trails - Homestead, Windmill, and Murray Basin - and, possibly, a fourth to the top of Flat Top Mountain, totaling about fifteen miles.

All or portions of these trails can be combined into various loops, but the terrain is so gentle and the land so open that it's possible to walk a great many miles here without using a trail at all. Long views in all directions are available from the summit of the oft-mentioned Flat Top Mountain. Otherwise, the scenery is pretty close in with a preponderance of the sky. The trails pass a couple of ruined homesteads dating from the early twentieth century. Human occupation of this area extends back many centuries, as evidenced by nearby Casa Malpais, and Spanish settlement began locally not too long after Coronado came this way. Potsherds litter the ground in some places, but remember, this is strictly catch and release country, so after you look at it, drop it and let someone else have the pleasure of discovery. The bad news is this is not a good rainy day hike, as the soil is mainly clay and becomes slick and sticky when moisture is added. Most excellent news: Murray Basin is completely free of ATV depredation. Why? Because it abuts the Saffel Canyon OHV area, and all the crazies with ATVs go over there to get their thrills.

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2004-11-22 BelladonnaTook
    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.

    Permit $$

    FR / Dirt Road / Gravel - Car Okay

    To hike
    From the traffic light in Eagar:
    Option A
    Drive south until the street ends, forcing a turn to the right. Continue about one block to the first intersection, which is Water Canyon (also FR 285). Turn left and go 2 miles to the signed turnoff to Murray Basin and Saffel Canyon. Turn left and drive about a mile to the trailhead at the end of the road.

    Option B
    Drive east. Highway curves south (right) at the rodeo grounds. Continue south, now on Highway 180, about 2 miles to trailhead and large parking area on the right.

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