If you've ever wished you could visit Ferngully, this spot is the next best thing. West Clear Creek Wilderness in Arizona has lush flora and fauna growing out of the rocks and hanging down from cliffsides so you can hike, float or simply sit and enjoy the stunning green oasis. You'll be whisked away to a magical world where anything is possible.

West Clear Creek Wilderness in Arizona is home to hanging gardens, rich greenery, and towering trees that give the area an otherworldly feel.

As you wander past the cliff faces adorned with ferns growing straight out of the rocks, you might even glimpse local wildlife like deer and elk.

You can get to this secret spot by following a small path that weaves through the trees to an oasis that looks like a rich tropical forest.

Nestled in the Coconino National Forest, this gem is free to visit and can be reached by a trail that runs along the creek. The ancient "ranch" road before it veers south towards several streams you can cross. 

To get to the trailhead, you can take Interstate 17 for 40 miles south to AZ 179. Head east under the freeway for 9 miles on Forest Route 618, then follow for three miles to Bullpen Ranch Trailhead.

The entire trek is around 7.5 miles, and as you wander deeper into the wilderness, the lush greenery continues to consume the rocks and cliffs that jut out from the ground.

Mammoth Sycamores, Douglas Firs, and Willow Trees (among many others) wave their branches lazily over the concealed forest, giving it a magical touch.

This hidden gem will transport you to a world of fairylands and dreamy hanging gardens.

West Clear Creek Wilderness

Difficulty: Easy

Length: 7.5 miles

Location: Latitude: 34°32'24.8"N, Longitude: 111°42'28.1"W

Why You Need To Go: This tropical forest is filled with lush hanging gardens and cool watering holes like a real-life Ferngully.


We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment.

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