There's so much beauty in the desert, you just have to know where to look. And with cooler weather making its way in the Grand Canyon State, you can finally enjoy those hikes you've been waiting to go on. One spot that will help you swing into the season is Fossil Creek in Arizona.
This gem is only one of two wild and scenic rivers in Arizona. It features a waterfall and streams with crystal clear water.
You can visit the falls and go for a swim year-round. During the offseason, Oct. 2 - April 30, there's no permit needed to park and hike here.
The offseason is one of the best times to visit the creek because crowds are lessened and parking is available on a first-come-first-serve basis.
Before you can visit the waterfall and creek, you'll need to go on a hike to get there. The Waterfall Trail is one favorite.
It's about 2-miles roundtrip and will lead you straight to the waterfall, where you can swim and enjoy the views.
When you're making your way here, it's possible that the GPS will give you misleading directions. For a smooth trip, you can find accurate details here.
Before you can park and embark on your adventure, it's recommended to have a high clearance vehicle for the 14-mile rough dirt road that leads to the parking lots.
There are so many areas along the creek you can visit and each one will offer you something different. It's also guaranteed that you'll come across a rope swing.
You can swing into the water, sunbathe, or relax with a book. The options are endless here.
If you want to challenge yourself and be rewarded with red rock cliffs and clear blue water views, you can do that too. The hike isn't nearby, but it's one of the best places to enjoy the desert's beauty.
It's a very challenging hike, but the views at the end are so worth it.
Price: No permit needed from October 2, 2019 - March 31, 2020 (Parking available on a first come first serve basis during this time.)
Address: Fossil Creek | Camp Verde, Arizona
Why You Need To Go: You can swim + hike + swing into the new season in style.
There are no water or restroom facilities available near the creek, only on designated parking lots. No campfires, warming fires, or grills are allowed. You are not allowed to put up rope swings. Glass containers are prohibited. No loud music, tampering with historic sites are artifacts are allowed. As always, pack out what you packed in. No trashcans are onsite in the permit area.
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.