Juniper Mesa Trail #20


Juniper Mesa Trail #20 is the main thoroughfare serving Juniper Mesa Wilderness, located in the northwest corner of the Prescott National Forest. This remote region encompasses more than 7,000 acres and has been protected under the Wilderness Act since its Congressional designation in 1984. Juniper Mesa is a relic of the Colorado Plateau’s ancient extent. Its layers of sandstone and limestone tower above the surrounding fields of granite and basalt. This trail traverses the top of the mesa and remains relatively level as it passes through open stands of ponderosa pine, Gambel oak, and alligator juniper. The views from this high country are remarkable.

The Juniper Mesa Trail #20 begins at Juniper Spring, on the eastern flank of Juniper Mesa, and ends at its junction with Oaks and Willows Trail #3. Trail #3 descends to the foot of the mesa by way of George Wood Canyon.

This trail lies within the Juniper Mesa Wilderness. Motor vehicles and the use of any mechanized equipment, including bicycles, are prohibited. Wilderness is an important resource and national heritage—please, leave no trace. There is no water available at the trailhead or along this trail. There may be water at Juniper Spring but it has not been tested for quality.


Printable Trail Description and Map (680 KB PDF; 8.5” X 11”)

At a Glance

Fees No
Open Season: Spring
Usage: Light
Closest Towns: Approximately 1.5 hours from Chino Valley, AZ
Water: Not available. Surface water should be treated.

General Information


From its intersection with Hwy 89, take Outer Loop Road 6 miles to Williamson Valley Road. Turn right and continue on Williamson Valley Road for 42 miles to Forest Road 9867A, on the left. If you reach the junction with FR 7, you have gone about 1.5 miles past the 9867A turnoff. Take FR 9867A about 5.5 miles to Juniper Spring. The drive to the spring is steep and rough.

Alternately, Trail #20 can be accessed via Juniper Springs Trail #2. Take Williamson Valley Road 27 miles to County Road 125. Turn left and continue 1.4 miles to the trailhead on the right. Parking is fair. Travel 0.3 miles on Old Military Trail #1. Trail #2 begins on the left. Follow Trail #2 for 2.95 miles to Trail #20.

The first 22 miles of Williamson Valley Road are paved, then dirt. FR 9867A is suitable for 4WD only.

General Notes:



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Horse Riding

  • This trail provides access to one of the most remote corners of northern Arizona and offers riders a unique experience of solitude.
Difficulty Level: Moderate
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  Area/Length : 
6.3 miles

  Elevation : 
7,180 feet


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