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Apache Trail Circle outside Phoenix ~ Have you been?

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Apache Trail Circle outside Phoenix ~ Have you been?

Old Aug 28th, 2004, 03:07 PM
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Apache Trail Circle outside Phoenix ~ Have you been?

We're spending 3 days in the Phoenix area and 2 days in Sedona. We've already planned a day to do the Jeep trails in Sedona. But, we'd love to sightsee in a convertible in the Phoenix area. I've been reading about the APACHE TRAIL CIRCLE. Can you do it in a regular car or is a 4X4 needed? Are there any other scenic drives in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area you can do in regular car? How about in the Sedona area?
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Old Aug 28th, 2004, 03:39 PM
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The Apache Trail is easily done in a standard passenger car. About half of it is quite scenic, the other half is more prosaic. As for other drives, I like to drive into the hills south of Phoenix at sunset. When the air is clear, the Valley of the Sun unfolds in front of you with the sunset to the west and it is breathtaking.

If you enjoy history at all, The area from Tucson to Bisbee and to the east and west are all parts of the Apache historic home and much of the Indian Wars took place there. Also, Fort Huachaca (pronounced wa-CHEW-ka) at Sierra Vista was the home of the famed Buffalo Soldiers, negro troops who did much of the post-civil war frontier patrolling and fighting. They have a pretty good museum on post you can visit. Tombstone is also in the same area, south of Benson and north of Bisbee. It's a bit touristy now but is worth a half day if you do have an interest in history.

Have a great trip.
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Old Aug 28th, 2004, 04:03 PM
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it has been a long time since we did the route...once was enough ; back in the 70's with a Vega....It can be odne in a car; but expect narrow, winding dirt roads with steep cliff sides in part. It makes a long day. IT can be done but didnt want you to be misguided by the phrase "easily done".
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Old Aug 28th, 2004, 04:21 PM
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Thanks to you both for the info. Since it's a 120 mile loop, I was guessing 2-3 hours, but it sounds like it will take longer. IS IT WORTH THE DRIVE?
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Old Aug 28th, 2004, 05:32 PM
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Giro - you need to get out more. Apache Trail is now entirely paved. There are still a few areas that are narrow and twisty but, again, nothing that cannot be easily done in a passanger car-my Aunt lives in Apache Junction and I take the trail everytime I go to visit. I have a 4-wheel drive but I never take it on that trip nor have I ever felt the slightest need for it. It's also not a long day-about 4-5 hours plus any stops you make. I think it's worth the drive for the northern half of the circle. The southern half is less scenic but to make up for it, the roads are wider so you can get through the less scenic portion more quickly. Just my opinion-like so many other things in life, YMMV.
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Old Aug 30th, 2004, 06:23 PM
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I apologize for the apparently stale information about thr trail not being paved. I stand corrected. If it can be done in 4-5 hrs as opposed to 8, then it makes for a different type of trip. It is scenic...(unless you look at all the boring blacktop
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Old Aug 30th, 2004, 08:48 PM
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dwooddon,I did the Apache trail drive three years ago ,and while most of the road was paved there was a section from Tortilla Flat to Roosevelt lake that was not paved.This section was between 20-30 miles long.Is it now paved? It looked like this.
http://virtualguidebooks.com/Arizona...CreekHill.html
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Old Aug 30th, 2004, 08:53 PM
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I could be wrong but the last time I was on it a couple of years ago, I do not remember any unpaved portions. I did the entire circle in a passenger car and it was no problem at all.
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Old Aug 31st, 2004, 08:03 PM
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I sense I may be vindicated...stay tuned....I'll try to check with a known authoritative source....
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Old Sep 1st, 2004, 09:31 PM
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Wow Lovejoy! Thanks for the link to that website. That made my mind up that YES I want to do the drive. Sounds like we should pack a cooler and include some snacks!
Last question~ How long will it take to do the loop? Or, would it be better to just drive the top half (more scenic I hear) then take the same top half back?
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Old Sep 2nd, 2004, 10:01 AM
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jewelhawg,I have only traveled the Apache Trail from Tortilla Flat to Roosevelt Lake and back.So I can't comment on the whole loop.Regardless of your decision to drive the whole loop,or not make sure you stop at Tonto National Monument,and take the short ,but steep path up to the lower cliff dwelings.It is well worth the effort.
Here are two more links for more info.
http://www.azcentral.com/travel/ariz...achetrail.html
http://www.nps.gov/tont/culture/lower.htm
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