High Country Fall Fishing
By Diane Tilton, Education and Information Manager
As Summer draws to a close and temperatures cool down, trout fishing will be picking up in the White Mountains. Although any day with a line in the water is a good day, of course, it’s always better to get a fish in hand for dinner. Here are some great, easy-to-access fishing spots for Fall trout fishing.
Woods Canyon Lake
The Arizona Game & Fish Department built Woods Canyon Lake for aquatic recreation. Woods Canyon has easy access, close proximity to Phoenix and excellent visitor facilities. It’s a beautiful, canyon bound, deep lake with plenty of trout fishing opportunities. Woods Canyon Lake has produced a couple of winners of the Department’s “Big Fish-of-the-Year” Program in the rainbow trout categories, including a 10-lb. brown trout in 1999. Now, very few, if any, brown trout are present. However, tiger trout were stocked here beginning in Spring, 2016. Green sunfish can usually be caught easily from the shore.
Woods Canyon Lake is located close to the edge of the Mogollon Rim, approximately 30 miles east of Payson in the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests. To get to this scenic Rim lake from Highway 260, drive west about four miles on paved Forest Road 300 (the Rim Road), then turn north onto paved Forest Road 105 and proceed about a mile to the lake. Access is restricted in the Winter when roads are closed at the highway due to snow, generally from December to early April.
Woods Canyon Lake consists of 55 surface acres, with an average depth of 25 feet and a maximum depth of 40 feet. It lies at 7,510 feet. Because it is deep, the lake maintains good water quality and is stocked weekly from May through September with catchable rainbow trout. Tiger trout are stocked less frequently, based on availability of the fish.
Fool Hollow Lake State Park
Park is open year-round.
Gates closed from 10:00 p.m. - 5:00 a.m.
8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. daily
Visitor Center/Park Store
8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. daily
Closed 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Mon - Thu, Oct 16 - Mar 31
Park Entrance Fee
Per vehicle (1-4 Adults): $7.00
Black Canyon Lake
Located on Forest Road 86, Black Canyon Lake offers excellent Trout fishing throughout the Spring, Summer, and Fall months. A hiking path meanders along the edge of the lake from the parking area to the dam.
The entire Black Canyon area was heavily affected by the Rodeo-Chediski fire in 2002. Black Canyon is now open. Four-wheel drive vehicles are recommended on Forest Road 300 due to wet conditions. Check out the campground too...
The distant view of Black Canyon Lake is from Gentry Look Out on Rim Road.
Kayking: My New Favorite
By Anne Groebner
I bought a kayak a few years ago. I could picture myself heading out to the several lakes around the Mountain and enjoying the peaceful feeling of floating on water surrounded by incredible scenery. My dream of weekly or even daily kayaking was broken, however, by the fact that every time I wanted to bring the kayak up the mountain, I was lacking some sort of mechanism to attach it to my car. First of all, the car I originally had didn’t have a rack. No problem, right? So, I found out we already had a rack. Then I realized that that type of rack didn’t work because I didn’t have READ MORE ABOUT PLACES TO KAYAK...
Kayak Sunrise Lake
Sunrise Lake is located behind the Sunrise Park Lodge and has a marina that offers boat rentals. Not only do they have kayaks, but they rent motor boats, peddle boats and row boats.
The Lodge offers dining and weekend lodging. Call 928-735-7669 or go to sunriseskipark.com
for more information
Junctions of AZ Route 260 and AZ Route 273. 12 miles wet of Greer.
Canoe or Kayak
Show Low Lake
Located on Show Low Lake Road,
between Summit Hospital and Walmart, Show Low Lake is a great place to canoe or kayak. Managed by Recreation Resource Management of America, it offers EZ camping. Just bring your sleeping bag and they willtake care of the rest!
For more information got to:
or call 888-537-7762
Canoe & Kayak Rentals
at Fool Hollow Lake
Some of the most beautiful kayaking and canoing can be done at Fool Hollow Recreation Area.
The Park offers year-round camping, fishing, picnicking, boating and wildlife viewing opportunities.
For camping information go to
Canoe and Kayak rentals are offered by J & T's Wildlifeoutdoors. They also offer paddle board rentals, bait/fishing supplies, snacks and drinks.
for more information on rentals go to
Rafting the Salt River Canyon. Photo by Brent Denys
Whitewater rafting the Salt River
Whitewater Rafting the Salt River
A 6-oar salute.
Rafters take a full-day rafting trip.
Rafting the Salt River. John Vandyck raft guide.
Rafters get their photos taken by Brent Denys (right).
Another successful rapids...
A class 5 bus ride back to base. You can see the Salt River below.
Bus ride back down Apache 1 Road.
View from the bus.
Owner Joe Greiner explains the Oar system to the applicants.
Before the trip Greiner runs through all of the gear they will take.
Applicants carry heavy supplies to the rafts.
Hauling the deflated rafts to a flat area.
Greiner demonstrates how to wrap the rope on the raft.
Preparing the raft for inflation.
Greiner explains how to inflate a raft.
Inflating a raft takes quick repetitive pumps to keep the air flowing.
Greiner demonstrates the proper tying of a knot.
Applicants learn many lessons about rafting and customer service.
Mike Rogers helps applicants get their raft ready.
Lindsey, raft guide, supervises applicants.
Lindsey checks the valves to make sure the raft is fully inflated.
Owner Joe Greiner instructs the applicants on securing items on the raft.
Straps need to be tightened in a uniform system to keep things centered.
Once the rafts are inflated they prepare the gear.
All of the applicants are expected to help get things ready for the trip.
Applicants carry heavy rocket boxes to the raft.
Interviewees carry the inflated raft to the river.
Lindsey, 1st-year rafting guide, checks the straps on the raft.
Mike Rogers instruct Kat, an applicant on the interview trip.
Mike Rogers poses behind Lindsey's raft as she secures the straps.
It's all about having fun...
Lindsey talks to applicants about paddle strokes.
Applicants test their skills at paddling...
Greiner talks to his crew about paddling.
Everyone is on board and ready to roll...
Paddling into the wilderness....
Rolling on the Salt River
World Class Rafting in Arizona
By Anne Groebner
There is world-class whitewater rafting right in our backyard. The Salt River, located at the “Gateway to the White Mountains” at the bottom of the Salt River Canyon, is one of Arizona’s best-kept secrets. Unlike Salt River Tubing, which is located in Mesa, this is the real deal when it comes to class one- to class five-rated whitewater rapids. It is nestled between the White Mountain Apache Reservation and the San Carlos Apache Reservation and extends through the Salt River Canyon Wilderness, a 32,101-acre wilderness area located within the Tonto National Forest. To avid rafters, it is a destination that is high on their list of rapids to conquer and, according to Joe Greiner, owner of Wilderness Aware Rafting out of Colorado, it is the best rafting between California and Colorado.
Wilderness Aware Rafting (WA) is one of only four commercial rafting companies that own permits on the Salt River and provide raft guiding services to the public. Each year, starting in March, Greiner and his crew from Colorado load up a caravan and haul rafting gear and equipment to Arizona and set up camp along the Salt River. It begins their short season of rafting...
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