Palomas Harquahala Road

Quartzsite, Arizona (Yuma County)

Last Updated: 11/22/2020
4 / 5 ( 3 reviews )
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Highlight: Palomas Harquahala Road
The sun woke me. In compensation for interrupting my dreams, it offered the quintessential western skyline for my consideration. Backlit in hues of burned orange, melted copper and baby blue, jagged peaks of the Eagletail Mountains sawtoothed the eastern sky. Silhouetted on closer hills, saguaros stood as silent sentinels of the dawn. The lower Sonoran Desert is at its best at sunrise, all peace and stillness, and beauty. The Palomas Harquahala Road crosses the expansive Palomas Plain to the Clanton Hills, traces the western edge of the Eagletail Mountains Wilderness, parallels sandy Deadman Wash up into Nottbusch Valley, and skirts the western edge of Cemetary Ridge before passing in the shadow of Deadman Mountain. The names alone bespeak adventure. The trail cuts through a flat desert sea of creosote bush, bursage, and brittlebush. The sameness is broken here and there by saguaro and ocotillo. Like green ribbons, the washes snake through the desert with their overgrown banks of palo verde, mesquite, and ironwood. Corrals and windmills, many still in use, evoke an earlier time when rugged men came here to eke out a living in this arid landscape. In that pursuit they cut the trails we drive today. Download the track. Pack your gear. Gas up the rig. Take a ride on a long trail.


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1. Trailhead (0 mi)
An informative BLM kiosk is set in a large parking area perfect for trail meetups.

Directions to Trailhead

Starting Point: Dateland, Arizona

From Interstate 10's Exit 67 at Dateland, proceed north on Avenue 64E for 9 miles. Turn right onto Hyder Road and go another 4.3 miles. Turn left on the paved solar farm access road. Cross the railroad tracks. Continue straight ahead on the dirt road to the trailhead.



Trail Reviews (3)

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Writer Information

Wade May

Hi! I'm Wade. After 43 years as a pilot, split evenly between flying fighters for the Air Force and Boeing 737s for the airlines, my feet are firmly planted on the ground. Seems I spent a lot of my flying time looking out the cockpit window thinking, "Yep, I could drive that trail." My trips range from a few days to a month. Most are solo in my silver 4Runner named Bullit. We range over all the southwest exploring remote places and trying to get as much dirt under the wheels as possible. Occasionally I get in some hiking, backpacking, and bushcraft as well. My most ambitious Overlanding plans include a trip to Tuktoyaktuk and Dead Horse when travel restrictions permit. Sharing my experiences as a member of the Trails Offroad crew, instructing at Overland Expo, and hosting the Gaia GPS Offroad podcast are true pleasures. Hope to see you on the trail soon.
For individual use only, not to be shared.