The Tonto National Forest embraces almost 3 million acres of rugged and spectacularly beautiful country, ranging from Saguaro cactus-studded desert to pine-forested mountains beneath the Mogollon Rim. This variety in vegetation and range in altitude (from 1,300 to 7,900 feet) offers outstanding recreational opportunities throughout the year, whether it's lake beaches or cool pine forest. As the fifth largest forest in the United States, the Tonto National Forest is one of the most-visited “urban” forests in the U.S. (approximately 5.8 million visitors annually). Its boundaries are Phoenix to the south, the Mogollon Rim to the north and the San Carlos and Fort Apache Indian reservations to the east
Big Mouth Bass Fishing
Roosevelt Lake is a haven for fishermen. Attracting anglers from around the world, you can venture out on your own or hire a local charter to help you get the big one. Roosevelt Resort offers 10% off of accommodations for fishing tournament participants.
This Wilderness contains approximately 32,100 very rugged acres and was established in 1984. The Salt River and its spectacular canyon bisect the wilderness for its entire length. Elevations range from 2,200 feet at the canyon's lower end to 4,200 feet on White Ledge Mountain. This area can be visited practically any time; however, there are no maintained trails within the entire wilderness. Travel is basically done by raft or kayak during the short and dangerous river-running season.
View the wilderness from a stand up paddleboard! Catch a glimpse of wild horses near the Salt River as you paddle at your own pace, and get a workout in while you're at it!
Tonto Upper Cliff Dwelling
Nestled in a cave overlooking Tonto Basin is the 40-room Upper Cliff Dwelling. Many theories have been presented as to why people began building here. Protection from the elements is certainly a possibility. The cave is dry even during the worst weather, and receives the full benefit of the morning sun in winter and cooling shade in summer. Perhaps people were protecting themselves from their neighbors, or were glad to get away from crowded conditions on the valley floor.