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About Fossil Creek:Hiking: #84 Mail Trail

 

Distance : 3.1 miles

Difficulty: Moderate

Season of use: Spring , summer and fall

From Camp Verde go east on Arizona Highway 260. Proceed 13 miles past the bridge over West Clear Creek and turn right onto FR 9247B. Follow the road as it parallels the powerline and turn left at the road just past the cattle guard. Follow this road to the parking area near the stock tank. This road is recommended for high clearance vehicles only and may be impassable during wet weather.

This trail drops steeply into the canyon of Fossil Springs Wilderness and affords good views into the upper reaches of the canyons that make up the Wilderness. The trail is easy to follow in the upper reaches, but becomes indistinct as it passes through a grassland before turning north and crossing a small drainage. The trail continues to parallel Fossil Creek and crosses Mud Tank Draw before turning east and crossing ther usually dry bed of Fossil Creek. The trail continues parallel to the creek and junctions with Fossil Springs Trail # 98 before crossing the creek for the last time and into the springs.

This trail used to be the route followed by the mail rider, who would start from Camp Verde at 2:00 in the morning and reach Payson at 2:00 in the afternoon. A rider would meet the mail rider near the bottom of the canyon and take the mail destined for the workers of the Childs Power Plant and those working on the flume that diverted water from the springs to be used for power generation

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