Butcher Jones Day Use Area

Area Status: Open
Butcher Jones Recreation Site

At Butcher Jones, Mesquite trees provide welcome natural shade to picnic units. Butcher Jones features a pleasant nature trail and a gently sloping beach which makes safe, gradual changes in depths adjacent to picnic area. This popular beach/picnic area is one of the most-visited sites on the Tonto National Forest. This lake is set in the magnificent Sonoran Desert where horses are frequently seen.

At a Glance

Operational Hours: Day Use Only
Open Season: Year round
Restrictions: Stay limit 1 day, no trailers, no motorized boats in the swimming area, glass containers are prohibited, pets must be on a leash, the picnic and beach area fill rapidly in the early spring and summer months.  No OHV Access. Alternate OHV Access from Pobrecito.
Closest Towns: Mesa, Saguaro Lake Marina
Water: Not Available
Restroom: Vault toilets (Accessible)
Passes:  The links below provide additional information on pricing and purchasing information.
Information Center: Mesa Ranger District (480) 610-3300

General Information


This site is 31 miles northeast of Mesa. From Mesa, take State Hwy. 87 for 27 miles. Turn south (right) on Bush Highway/Forest Road (FR) 204 and travel 2 miles to FR 166, and then turn left. Follow FR 166 for 2 miles to the site.

View and download a map.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Lake and Pond Fishing

Saguaro Lake Fish Species:  Rainbow Trout; Largemouth, Smallmouth and Yellow Bass; Crappie; Sunfish; Channel Catfish; Walleye; Tilapia; Yellow Perch


There are 15 picnicking units with designated grills.  There are no shade ramadas. Grills, tables, trash, and paths are on compacted dirt.

No. of Sites 32

Boating - Non-Motorized

There are no designated docks, ramps, or launch sites. Beach landing.


Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


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  Elevation : 
1,500 feet