FR 71 Tonto National Forest

Tonto Basin, Arizona (Gila County)

Last Updated: 07/07/2021
2.5 / 5 ( 5 reviews )
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Highlight: FR 71 Tonto National Forest
Considered a gateway trail by many, FR71 takes you from the harsh desert of the Tonto Basin to other trails leading to the milder climates high above in the pines of Tonto National Forest. While traveling up the very easy dirt trail you can choose one of the short side trails leading to a local spring with their abundance of blackberries, the best time is around July. Along the route, there are plenty of opportunities to stop and enjoy the beautiful panoramas of both the Four Peaks and Roosevelt Lake areas. For incredible star gazing, you can choose to camp in the wide open desert while further up the trail many campsites offer shade from the relentless sun. Either way, you're sure to enjoy a remote camping experience.


Route Information

Technical Rating

( EASY )

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1. Trailhead FR71 East (0 mi)
Begin by traveling east at the fork, marked by the brown FR71 signs. Travel over the large dirt wash, onto pavement past all the houses until the road turns to dirt. Marked by forest service signage.

Directions to Trailhead

Starting Point: Hwy. 188

Travel on Hwy. 188 from either highway 87 or 60 to the small town of Punkin Center. Exit east onto old highway 188, FR71 and travel a 1/4 mile to the Punkin Center Lodge. There is a large pumpkin sign (jack-o-lantern) along the east side of Hwy. 188 marking the starting point of the trail. There is a large parking lot in front of the lodge to air down. Trailer parking and staging can be found along the trail after the road turns to dirt.



Trail Reviews (5)

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Writer Information

Bobby Nelson

Mapping Crew - Arizona

While living in the Midwest, I developed a passion for searching out new trails and hidden spots. That passion continues to this day in the beautiful southwestern United States. My wife and I are full-time RVers who travel from region to region, exploring every nook and cranny we can find. While we're getting to know the locals, we gain insight into these areas then pass on that knowledge to our subscribers. We truly enjoy traversing long, beautiful back-country routes with epic campsites, but we equally enjoy pushing the limits on challenging rock crawling trails. Our rig was built to do everything, and that's what we hope to share with our subscribers. Please visit our website to follow us and for opportunities to join us on our adventures. You can also view our vast video library on YouTube. Xploremor YouTube
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