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Upper Verde River Wildlife Area
Spectacular canyons and a lush riparian corridor provide excellent scenic and recreational opportunities. This is the headwaters of the Verde River, and several of the source springs for the river originate on this property. This area provides one of the few public access points to the Upper Ve...
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Dead Horse Ranch State Park
Description: Walk along a rare free-flowing desert river, listen to the whisper of cottonwood leaves in a gentle breeze and look for birds. At the heart of this park, located at about 3,300 feet elevation, runs the Verde River. A dense forest of riparian trees and shrubs line the Verde’s banks. Part of a designated Important Bird Area, this Fremont cottonwood / Gooding Willow riparian gallery forest is one of only five stands remaining in Arizona and one of 20 such stands in the world.

Three lagoons at the park provide opportunities for fishing and wildlife viewing. The park is also ideal for camping, hiking, canoeing, picnicking, fishing or mountain biking in the adjacent Coconino National Forest.

Wildlife to Watch: A six-mile reach of the river known as the Verde River Greenway State Natural Area supports a diversity of unique species, including bald eagle, willow flycatcher, terrestrial gartersnake, gopher snake, plateau lizard and lowland leopard frog. You may also see common black-hawk, osprey yellow-billed cuckoo, Gambel’s quail., and numerous migratory bird species. Mammals include beaver, raccoon, ringtail, mule deer, javelina, bobcat and coyote. This is one of the few places in Arizona where you have a chance to see river otter.

Special Tips: For more information call 928.634.5283.

Other Activities: Trails: A well-developed and well-marked trail system exists in the park, with trails ranging from ¼ miles to the 1.5 mile one-way Lime Kiln Trail that connects Dead Horse State Park to Red Rock State Park Some trails are multi-use, with mountain biking and equestrian use. Some feature interpretive signage and universal accessibility.

Ownership: Arizona State Parks 
Size: 920 acres 
Closest Town: Cottonwood

RestroomsParkingTent CampingFishingHikingVisitor CenterHandicap AccessibleSmall BoatsTrailer CampingDrinking Water

Best Seasons for Wildlife Viewing:

Dead Horse State Park - photo by George Andrejko
Use link below please

Driving Directions:
From Cottonwood, take Main Street and turn north on North 10th Street. Cross the Verde River Bridge to park entrance.

Map Link

Dead Horse Ranch State Park : Wildlife Viewing Area