Arizona Hiking Gallery
Horton Creek Loop Hike
Tonto National Forest, AZ
September 7, 2008
Gallery contains 31 photos
Gallery last updated: 9/28/2008

This Horton Creek Loop Hike is about an 8 mile counter-clockwise loop hike below the Mogollon Rim, using the Derrick Trail and the Highline Trail to reach Horton Spring and then using the Horton Creek Trail to return to the trailhead near the Upper Tonto Creek Campground. See my September 11, 2005 Horton Creek Loop Hike Gallery for photos from a previous on this same loop.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 1
A large, old Manzanita along the Derrick Trail.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 2
Red-barked Manzanita trunks rising among lichen covered boulders.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 3
A view over the forest from the Derrick Trail.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 4
Interesting and bizarre white markings on a large outcropping of red sandstone.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 5
The silvery grey leaves of Parry's Agave (Agave parryi) form a handsome rosette against the red sandstone.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 6
A sign that another creature has passed this way.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 7
A cluster of Aspen Fleabane (Erigeron macranthus) blooms in the dappled sunlight of the forest along the Highline Trail.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 8
A cluster of seeds deposited on a rock in the middle of the trail.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 9
A view of the Highline Trail as it makes its way though the forest along the base of Promontory Butte.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 10
A colorful Black Swallowtail caterpillar (Papilio polyxenes). If you come across one of these I recommend that you not pick it up. When bothered this caterpillar will releases a foul smell from a gland called an osmetrium. The odor will remain on your fingers for sometime.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 11
After crossing the dry creek bed of the East Fork of Horton Creek watch for the deep red blooms of Red Cinquefoil (Potentilla thurberi).

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 12
Red Cinquefoil (Potentilla thurberi).

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 13
Red Cinquefoil (Potentilla thurberi).

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 14
This is where the Highline Trail crosses Horton Creek. Horton Spring is a short ways up the creek from here.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 15
The waters of Horton Creek flowing over a small rock ledge.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 16
The waters of Horton Creek flowing over a small rock ledge.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 17
Horton Spring emerges from the rocks on a small shady cliff.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 18
The rocks around Horton Spring are covered with a thick layer of moss.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 19
The hillsides at the spring support a large colony of horsetail (Equisetum sp.), a segmented green reed.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 20
Horton Creek flows between mossy boulders near Horton Spring.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 21
Horton Spring.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 22
Horton Spring.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 23
Horton Spring.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 24
Horton Spring flowing beneath the rocks before it emerges out of the cliff.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 25
Horton Spring.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 26
Multicolored berries of a California Buckthorn (Rhamnus californica).

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 27
The waters of Horton Creek making its way through boulders along the Horton Creek Trail.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 28
Horton Creek cascades over a rock ledge.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 29
Horton Creek spills over a rock ledge.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 30
The lower portion of the Horton Creek Trail passing along the edge a small meadow.

Horton Creek Loop Hike: Image 31
Canyon Grape (Vitis arizonica) climbs and almost completely covers the trunk of an old cottonwood tree.

All images Copyright ©2008 Terry Wright. All rights reserved.