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Tonto Creek-Green Valley Creek, AZ
mini location map2017-05-26
18 by photographer avatarBiFrost
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Tonto Creek-Green Valley Creek, AZ 
Tonto Creek-Green Valley Creek, AZ
 
Hiking avatar May 26 2017
BiFrost
Hiking6.10 Miles 1,034 AEG
Hiking6.10 Miles   3 Hrs   45 Mns   1.69 mph
1,034 ft AEG      9 Mns Break
 
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Day off from work so I headed out to explore access roads to Tonto Creek near Payson. I took FR 371 to FR 454 down to a ranch near Wolverton Mtn. FR 371 is in decent shape so no issues there but FR 454 is extremely rough, steep, and slow going. Took about 45 minutes to go roughly 4 miles so not what I was hoping for. Being stubborn and really wanting to swim in Tonto Creek that day I continued down 454 arriving at the ranch. Nice area with some green meadows and explored the ranch corral grounds.

From the ranch my route followed a side drainage down to Green Valley Creek. The route was fairly easy staying on the right side of the drainage heading down canyon. It gets a bit rough the last 500 feet to Green Valley Creek but no show stoppers. Surprised to see some light flow in the side drainage. Green Valley Creek had more water with good pools and medium flow. Once in the creek headed downstream ½ mile towards Tonto confluence. It’s rough bouldering in the ½ mile but pretty section for sure.

Finally reaching Tonto Creek good flow here of course and great pools. I went downstream for about a mile just to see some of the larger pools. Found one really nice swimmer so blew up the floaty and enjoyed the water. Water temps were nice and cool but not cold so it was pleasant. Spent about 2 hours in Tonto before heading back the way I came down. Take about 45 minutes to an hour from Tonto Creek back to the vehicle depending on how fast you can boulder in Green Valley Creek. So hiking access to Tonto is what I was hoping for but unfortunately road access on FR 454 was something I’d think twice about doing again.
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