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Old 03-23-2006, 08:32 AM   #1
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Cheap or Free in Arizona

My current list:
Cheap or Free: ARIZONA part "A"
ALPINE: HulseyLake. Go 6 mi N out of Alpine and take FS Rd 56 for 2 mi. Room for several small rigs (30 ft max)
APACHE JUNCTION: Follow US-60 for 16 mi to intersection w/US-89. Stay on US-60 for 2 mi. Turn left (before crossing RR tracks) onto Queen Valley Rd. Turn R on Hewett Station Rd. or FR-357. Once across tracks and cattle guard, it is NF w/ distributed sites. Unlimited size. 14-day limit.
BullheadCity :CampDavis Located along Colorado River just north of town, this county park provides both full hookups & beach dry camping, the latter for $10 /day. Nice spot w/ barbeques & shaded picnic tables. Laughlin. NV, is across river.
BURRO CREEK: 60 mi. NW of Wickenburg on HWY-93. 21-day limit, Golden Age accepted. The overflow area by TwinTowers is free in this BLM campground. Has dump station, water, picnic tables.
CAMPVERDE: From I-17, take exit 287. Exxon station on East side of I-17, open 24 hours, gas, dump station, McDonalds, and more. Room for all sizes.
CASA GRANDE: Take I-8 West 23 mi from Montgomery Rd. Exits 144 & 140 both go South onto BLM open camping areas. 14-day limit.
CHINLE: Canyon de Chelly NPS Cottonwood Campground. 95 level sites, many paved, most small-to-medium in size. Toilets, water faucets, dump station, trash barrels, phone. Free. 5-day limit.
CHLORIDE: Free overnight camping (no hookups) available at the VFW as well as on the old school ground.Contact the Chloride Fire Department for camping on old school lot.
CONGRESS: SKP North Ranch, on Highway 89 near Milepost 264. Members who do not own campsites in the parks may stay there on a space available basis. Campsites with full hookups are $8 a night. Dry camping is free the first night and then $2.50 a night thereafter. An annual membership in Escapees is $50 a year.
COTTONWOOD: North of Phoenix, on I-17,take Hwy-260 at Camp Verde/Cottonwood exit. Go approx 8 mi NW toward Cottonwood. Turn right at entrance to TT. Go approx 1/4 mi and turn left into NF area. Room for several rigs. Great views.
EAGAR: 17 mi W of Eagar on US-260, turn N onto FR-117, go 1 mi and choose a site on either side of road (9,500 ft elev.). Unlimited size. 14-day limit.
EHRENBURG: Exit From I-10 Just below the Flying J Plaza/Motel/Wendy's. It's BLM land across the Colorado from the campground.
FLAGSTAFF: North of Flagstaff, after climbing grade but before you get to the turn off to Wupatki there is a road heading west called the Schlutz Pass (SP). In maybe 1/2 mile, there are some free spots.
FLAGSTAFF: FortTuthill - CoconinoCountyPark - Flagstaff - a fairly primitive state camp ground in forest. Costs were reasonable or there is a large area before you drive into the camp ground that RV's use for the night. Flagstaff has a "no overnight law" . You can't stay at the Walmart in Flagstaff. Take I-17 or 89A south towards Sedona. The first exit will say FortTuthill. Drive in the gate and look for signs to the campground.
Also: A few miles S of Flagstaff at the WillardSprings exit ( #328 ) there is a
large NF Service dispursed camping area west of I-17.
FLAGSTAFF: From I-40, take exit 195B to Lake Mary Road. Go 5.5 mi on L.M. Road towards MormanLake and Payson to 2nd cattle guard. Camp is 50 ft on left past cattle guard. Limit 14 days, BUT you can move back and forth across road every 14 days. Will take all size of rigs. Water 3.5 mi back toward town at water treatment plant on E side of rd. Dump station located in Flagstaff at Giant gas station on Hwy-89 N.
FLAGSTAFF: Go South on US-89A (0.5 mi S of Wal-Mart). Going N on I-17, take exit 339, turn SE onto Lake Mary Rd, go about 9.5 mi. You'll pass a water facility with hose for fresh water. Turn left at sign for MarshallLake. In 1.2 miles go left at Y, follow to lake, turn left or right and park across from lake with snow-covered mountains in background, or stop at many sites along the way. All sizes of rigs. 14 day limit. Dump station at Little America Truck Stop on I-40, exit 198, Butler Ave & another at Giant Gas, 1205 S. Milton.
FLAGSTAFF:CoconinoNF. 10 mi N of Flagstaff on US-89, turn E on Forest Road 545 toward Sunset Crater Nat'l Mon. Go 2 mi to visitor center. Continue another 4.3 mi and turn S. on Forest Road 776 just past E. boundary of National Monument. Go about 0.25 mi. No facilities. Free. (Stay on prepared surfaces as volcanic ash is soft!)
FORESTLAKES: 5 mi East on Hwy-260, Forest Rd 26. Numerous places to stay!
GILA BEND: I-80, take Exit 115. McDonalds offers a free RV dump station and o/n parking for several rigs.
GILA BEND: Painted Rocks BLM campground. On I-80, exit 102, go N about 12 mi to campground. Pit toilets, picnic benches, no water.
GILA BEND: O/N parking & free dump station at Texaco Truck Stop. Going West from Gila Bend on I-8, 119 turnoff (1st one). Next to Super 8 Motel.
GILA BEND: Subway Restaurant advertises on the billboard,"Free RV dump/ RV parking"
GLOBE/SHOW LOW:Salt RiverCanyon, about 40 mi N of Globe on HWY-60 (AZ-77) shortly past Seneca Lake. Many rest areas from MM-290 through 297. Red rock formations similar to Grand Canyon, with Salt River flowing through. Store, and gas about 0.25 mi N of metal bridge.
GLOBE/SAFFORD/NM BORDER: US-70 is a high desert scenic route with rest areas & turnouts suitable for O/N boondocking. Any size. Few services, check fuel gauge.
GLOBE: Apache Gold Casino, 7.5 mi E of Globe on HWY-70 at MM 258. Unlimited size. O/N only. Water / dump station at Globe visitor center.
GRAND CANYON NORTH RIM: From Jacob Lake, South on AZ 67 to Kaibab Lodge on right. Continue past lodge and see Demotte Campground on R. Just past campground, turn onto a gravel road on L, immediately cross over a bridge and follow signs to "East Rim View". Good gravel road with sites on either side. About 6 miles turn R, go 200 yds. to view of canyon. All size rigs. Toilets, no other services. 14-day limit, free. Water / dump @ North Rim Campground.
GRAND CANYON SOUTH RIM: Unlimited primitive parking at FS overflow area 5 mi S of south entrance (Hwy-180) between mile markers 232 & 233 (just S of Ten-X cg), on Road-688 on East side of hwy, and Road-686 on West side of Hwy. Dirt roads, and only small signs identify them as you turn onto them.
Also,Dispersed Camping: permitted in the NF outside the park. Camping must be at least 0.25mile/0.4 km away from Highway 64. Other restrictions may apply. Contact Tusayan Ranger District, Kaibab NF (928) 638-2443 for info.
HEBER: Mogollan Rim, SW of Heber. Take FR-300 W; 2 mi W of Forest Lakes, take dirt rd left about 1 mi. Dispersed camping on the rim.
KAYENTA Camp free in campground at NavajoNational Monument, 30 miles from Kayenta along a good paved road. The campground is primitive, with 30 sites RVs to 25 feet. Drinking water / bathroom.
KEAMS CANYON, HOPI RESERVATION: Take AZ 264 E past MM 403 on south side of road, directly across from service station/stores. Free 2 night limit.
KINGMAN: BLM Burro Creek CG off SH-93 between Kingman & Wickenburg. Rate $2. Good water, dump. No size restrictions. Paved 2 lane rd 1.5 mi from hwy to campground. Not free, but close to it.
LAKEHAVASUCITY: On HWY-95, go North 8 miles by airport. Craggy Wash is BLM, 14-day limit, no fee, no designated campsites, pick a flat spot, acres of space.
LAKEHAVASUCITY: Just a tad north of town on U.S. 95 (editors note: between mile markers 190 and 191) and just north of the airport on the east side of the highway is BLM land where a lot of RVers dry camp.

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Old 03-23-2006, 08:33 AM   #2
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Part "B"
MESA: sites along Bush Highway in Tonto NF From US-60, go N on Ellsworth which becomes Usery Peak Rd in 8 or 10 miles. Continue on Usery Peak Rd approx 8 mi further to 4-way stop intersection with Bush Hwy. For Coon Bluff, turn left at 4-way stop at Bush Hwy and go about 2 mi. Turn right and follow road. For Phon D. Sutton, turn left at 4-way stop at Bush Hwy and go about 4 mi. Turn right and follow road for about 1 mi. Along river turn right at 4-way stop onto Bush Hwy and go about 4 mi. sites on the right. For Goldfield, straight ahead at the 4-way stop for about 1 mi. Water & sewer avail at county park on Usery Mtn, or at Giant Station on Ellsworth.
PARKER: 8 miles North on Parker Dam Rd. Crossroads BLM has 12 sites, vault toilets picnic tables, fire grills, no water, 14-day limit, Free.
PATAGONIA: NF along gravel road between Patagonia and Harshaw. Park anywhere.
PAYSON: East Fork of Verde River. North of Payson about 3 mi to Houston Mesa Rd. Follow it 8 mi to 2nd crossing. Any size rig for 14 days. Fishing.
PAYSON:East Verde River, approx 3 mi N of Payson on Hwy-87 (MM 258), turn West on East Verde Estates Rd. Take 1st right on gravel rd to open area (before crossing river). Easy & close access to hwy. Quiet at night, no facilities, open all year. Room for 4-6 rigs.
PETRIFIED FOREST NAT'L PARK: 19 mi E of Holbrook, outside South entrance of park on both sides of road at Jct of SH-180 and park road. Clearly marked at private rock shop and museum, undesignated sites, water, free.
PHOENIX: The Harrah's casino on the Akchin Indian Reservation south of Phoenix allows overnight stays in its parking lot.
PICACHOPEAK: On I-10 E of Casa Grande. According to clerk at Picacho Trading Post, a large parking lot adjacent to the Trading Post belonging to Nickerson Family Restaurant is available for o/n. Clerk said no one has been bothered staying there.
PRESCOTT: WatsonLakeRec. Area rest stop along Rt. 89A, 5 miles north of Prescott, on right. Good for 1-2 nights. Rt. 89A proceeds N over MingusMtn. (7,700 ft.) to Jerome, Cottonwood and Sedona.
QUARTSITE: The 4 La Posa (BLM) long-term visitor areas require the $50/year permit. However, there is a free 14-day pre-area behind Cloud's Swap Meet. Sanitary dump at landfill just North of milepost 111 is free (no rinse water).
SAFFORD: Culff Reservoir. Take Hwy-70 to Pima & turn left about 4 mi.
SEDONA: From intersection of HWY-89A & 179, take HWY-179 1/4 mi, cross bridge, left on Schnebly Hill Rd. 1 mi on paved then gravel road. Left on dirt road lined with rocks. NFS. 7-day limit. No lengthy rigs. Some real nice scenery.
SEDONA: From 179, go S on 89A to Dry Creek Rd. Turn right to Boynton Pass Rd. On right side is area for dispersed parking. All dirt, no facilities, fishing in creek.
SEDONA: On 89A South, heading from Sedona to Cottonwood, immediately before MM 364 and opposite a mailbox, turn sharply left onto dirt road and across cattle guard. There are several boondock spots within the first ¾ mile (don't go any further). Quiet and with great views. Free dump station and dumpster in Cottonwood at the Giant gas station.
SEDONA:West Sedona, Coconimo Nat'l Forest primitive area. From Rt. 89A, turn onto Dry Creek Rd., go 5 miles to BoyntonCanyon, left on Boynton Pass Rd. 0.6 miles (dirt road). Area #9586 on left. Room for 5 to 10 motorhomes under 32ft. 14 day limit. Very nice area.
SHUNGOPAVI, HOPI RESERVATION, SECOND MESA: Take AZ 264 east at MM 379 on north side of road between Hopi Arts and Crafts Silversmiths Cooperative Guild and HopiCulturalCenter. Wooded area with room for 12+ rigs. Picnic tables, grills, level unpaved sites, no hookups, dumpster @ CulturalCenter. Phone inside. Free, 2 night limit.
SONOITA: Empire-Cienega Ranch is now BLM land. Enter off SR-82 about 6 mi E or SR-83 about 7 mi N. No length limit, no facilities. Wildlife abounds.
STRAWBERRY:Local Road 300, General Crook Highway, E of SR-87 along Mogollon Rim. Great scenery in CoconinoNF. High quality gravel rd.Park anywhere. No length limit. No facilities.
TUCSON: Visitors to PimaAir & SpaceMuseum, 6000 E Valencia Rd are allowed to O/N in their large parking lot while visiting. The museum displays over 185 vintage aircraft.
TUCSON: I-10 Exit 255 Miracle Mile. Go E a couple blocks to a very large paved lot that was a K-Mart awhile back.
TUCSON BLM has a little known campsite area at Snyder Hill, just West of Tucson on the Ajo Highway. You can stay 2 weeks free, the Ranger comes around at irregular intervals. We have used this site for a week or two each year. It is about 6 miles West of the intersection of the Ajo Highway and I-10.
The camping area is just to the North of the Ajo highway between Kenny Road and the Ryan Airfield. As you drive the highway you will see the "Hill" has an abandoned quarry an the West face and some RV's will be parked in the maze of small trails.
TUCSON: Casino of the Sun has a parking lot set aside for RV's for overnight parking.

WELLTON:M & MRVVillage. P.O. Box 248, Wellton, AZ85356. 520-785-4273. I-8 Exit 29. Turn N on Williams Rd to 2d L after RR crossing (Arizona Ave). Proceed W on Arizona Ave 0.25 mi to entrance.

WILCOX: I-10 Exit 336. Rip Griffin's TruckPlaza. Restaurant. Separate fuel pumps. Designated RV parking space away from trucks. There is water and a dumping station.

WHY: BLM land 1.5 mi S on SH-85 at MM 55. 14-day limit. Entrance across from roadside table, across cattleguard. Watch for very small sign.

WICKENBURG: A very secluded campground is one mile up a hill out of town across from the rodeo grounds. It has large sites, is secure and has beautiful view of Wickenberg after dark. Fairly Quiet. $2/night
Wickenburg: .go south of Wickenburg down Vulture Mine Road. Keep going until you see many rigs, probably off to your left. There are lots of places to boondock and lots of beautiful country! Be cautious though and don't park anywhere where you cross a gully. Last time we were there, we got some rain that washed out the gully even deeper and our motorhome got stuck. Had to be towed out...what a pain!
WILCOX: From I-10 at Wilcox, take exit 340 S 2 blocks to Chevron Truck Stop. Restaurant. Open 24 hours. Showers for men.
YUMA: The Imperial Dam LTVA is 25 miles north of Yuma off state route 24 via Senator Wash Road on the California side of the Colorado River. The 3,500-acre "campground" is in flat, sparsely shaded desert with dump sites, two restrooms, outdoor showers and trash facilities. Camping is $20 per week or $100 for the Sept. 15 to April 15 season.
YUMA Many RVers camp for free six miles west of Yuma in California on the north side of the I-8 exit to Algondes, Mexico.
YUMA area BLM, Yuma District Office, manages lands in Yuma area. Most rec visitors use open desert where facilities are scarce. An LTVA is near Imperial Dam fur up to 7 months from September 15 to April 15. LTVA users must purchase Long Term Permit, or a short term permit good for 3 weeks. Both permits are valid in all designated LTVAs.
1. Imperial Dam (LTVA) BLM - Individual sites listed below:
Quail Hill - Gray water disposal station.
Mesa - No facilities.
Coyote Ridge - Gray water disposal station.
Cripple Creek - RV dump station.
Skunk Hollow - No facilities.
South Mesa Rec Site - restrooms, RV dump station, water, outside showers, swimming, fishing, shade ramadas, & amphitheater.
Hurricane Ridge - No facilities.

2. Senator Wash Boat Ramp BLM
Managed by the BLM No fee Camping, vault toilets, swimming, fishing, and boat launching. The reservoir provides storage for irrigation, and may have rapidly rising/falling water levels.

3. SquawLake Recreation Site
See Senator
Wash directions: Located on the Colorado River adjacent to Senator Wash Reservoir. BLM, restrooms, water, showers, gray water disposal station, swimming, fishing, boat launching, tent & RV O/N camping and picnicking. Fee $8/day.
4. Hidden Shores BLM
Imperial Dam. BLM resort concession. Overnight camping (tents and RV fees). Trailer hookups, groceries, cafe, laundry, showers, boat rentals, fuel, phone, RV dump station, boat launch. more info call (520) 783-1448.

Laguna Dam South Recreation Site Managed by Quechan Indian Tribe. Camping available for 60 RV's. Dry camping, or full hookups, drinking water, dump station. O/N camping fee. Weekly or monthly camping.

MittryLake Travel East on Highway 95 to Circle K (Avenue 7E) turn left, continue about five miles. 10 day camping, no showers, restrooms, boat ramp.

MartinezLake Water Wonderland of the Desert. Located 35 miles North of Yuma. Travel East on Highway 95 for about 22 miles, turn left onto Martinez Lake Road. Stay on the road for about 10 miles until the road forks. Right fork goes to MartinezLakeMarina: RVs, trailers, (no tents), showers, restrooms, fuel, boat launching, restaurant, lounge, groceries and phones. call (520) 783-9589.
Left fork goes to Fisher's Landing: O/N camping, showers, restrooms, tents, RVs, trailers, bait, boat launching and storage, boat rentals, restaurant lounge, fuel and groceries.

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Old 03-23-2006, 09:25 AM   #3
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Great work Bob

We're gonna have to do some quality asurance and personally verify (most of) these spots.
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Old 03-23-2006, 09:43 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by silverback
We're gonna have to do some quality asurance and personally verify (most of) these spots.
I'll volunteer! If it'll just quit snowing, I'll finish the Airstream and start!


PS: Just kiddin. I think we're going to do some southern Colorado this year, places we haven't been in several decades ...
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Old 03-23-2006, 10:10 AM   #5
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Bob, your "current" list is pretty darned good! Will you be sharing any past lists?
Great list, thanks.
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Old 03-23-2006, 12:53 PM   #6
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awesome list! It's great to know there are so many inexpensive places to go camping right in my back yard... now if i only I could get my trailer put back together quickly!
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Old 03-24-2006, 06:31 PM   #7
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QUARTSITE: The 4 La Posa (BLM) long-term visitor areas require the $50/year permit.

This is outdated information. The current fee is $140 for the season (9/15 through 4/15), or $30 for a 2-week period.

There is also a lot of free BLM land surrounding is a link to directions to all the BLM land around Quartzsite (including the LTVAs).
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Old 04-07-2006, 09:43 PM   #8
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Cheap or Free Dump Stations in Arizona. If you boondock more than 10 minutes, you're likely going to need this list.
Buckeye……Leafe Verde RV Resort, 1500 S. Apache Rd.
Buckeye……Loves Country Store, I-10 @ S. Miller Rd.
CampVerde..Texaco Starmart, I-17 Exit 289
Cordes……..Carioca Company #23, Hwy 69
Ehrenberg…Flying J TravelPlaza, I-10 Exit 203
Eloy………..Truckstops of America, I-10 Exit 1
Eloy………...Flying J TravelPlaza, I-10 Exit 208
Flagstaff……Little America, I-40 Exit 198
Gila Bend…. Bill's Texaco, I-8 Exit 115
Gila Bend…. Holt's Texaco Truckstop, I-8 Exit 119
Glendale….. Best West RV Center, 4648 NW Grand Ave
Holbrook…..HolbrookTruckPlaza, I-40 Exit 292
Kingman……Exxon, Hwy 93 and I-40
Kingman……Flying J TravelPlaza, I-40 Exit 53
Mesa…………Giant Station, Ellsworth & Brown
Page…………Next to Fire Station (City owned), North Navajo Drive
Payson……..Giant Gas Station, Rt. 260 (E)
Phoenix…….Flying J Travel Plaza, I-10 Exit 137
Phoenix…….Giant Gas Station, Glendale & 35th AVE - I-17 Exit 205
San Simon…4-K Truck Stop, I-10 Exit 378
Seligman…..Chevron Station, I-40
ScottsdaleTexaco Gas & Minimart, IndianSchool & Pima Roads
Tonopah……Minute Mart #42, I-10 Exit 94
Tonopah……Rip Griffin's, I-10 Exit 103
Tonopah……Texaco, I-10 Exit 97
Tucson……..Circle K Station, 22nd & Prudence
Tucson……..Mr. T's Self Serve, I-10 Exit 268
Tucson……..Triple T Truck Stop, I-10 Exit 268
Tucson……..Tucson Truck Terminal Inc., I-10 Exit 268
Tucson……..Terminal Stations, I-10 Exit 269
Wilson………Rip Griffin Truck & Travel Center, I-10 Exit 340
Winslow……Flying J TravelPlaza, I-40 Exit 255
Winslow……PilotTravelCenter #371, I-40 Exit 253
Yuma ………Barney's Diamond Shamrock, 4th Avenue & 29th Street
"Min. charge & key deposit (charge diminishes w/ fuel purchase)"
Yuma……….Yuma Civic & Convention Ctr, Ave A, S of 32nd St. "Weekdays"
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Old 04-09-2006, 08:54 AM   #9
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Another Free CG in a beautiful setting to add to your Arizona list:

WINSLOW:McHood City Park 6 miles south of Winslow on HW 87 and then left on HW 99. All rig sizes. Great sites, nicely maintained overlooking a fishing lake, no elec. or water (for now) but FREE.
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Old 06-14-2006, 04:49 PM   #10
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In awe

I want to be like Bob when I grow up... Thanks for the locations. We're native Arizonians and haven't been as many places as Bob. Now that we have a roadable Argosy... we're going to try to catch up.

Mike & Donna
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Old 01-27-2007, 09:14 AM   #11
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Update on Tucson BLM "Snyder Hill" to make it easier to find. It is closer to 11 miles from the I-10 / Ajo Highway intersection. Going west on Ajo Hwy., you will pass Kinney Road. Snyder Hill is 2.5 miles past Kinney Rd. between Camino Verde Rd. and San Joaquin Rd. It is a good place to camp with plenty of level spots. TV reception is fair to good and road noise is slight. You can camp for two weeks for free.
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Old 01-27-2007, 09:20 AM   #12
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Update, for the dump station located in Mesa at Ellsworth and Brown, it is no longer a Giant Station, it has changed to a Chevron Station. The dump and water is still free to the pubic.
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Old 01-27-2007, 09:27 AM   #13
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This will come in handy as we are relocating to Rio Rico sometime later this year( I think!) All I have to do is build a house, workshop, and a ramada for the Airstream. Oh well, what else is there to do.
Thanks again for all the AZ info.
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Old 01-27-2007, 06:44 PM   #14
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Update add to Arizona list: Sonoita: There is BLM camping along Gardner Canyon Road, north of Sonoita. We camped here for a couple days and it was acceptable and free. Directions: Drive north on Hwy. 83 out of Sonoita about 2.5 miles and turn left onto Gardner Canyon Road. There will be several places in the first mile of Gardner Canyon Road where you can camp. Some of the sites have good shade trees. The area is frequented by hunters and ATV'ers.

Update: Patagonia: There is good NF boondock camping in very pleasant areas along the road from Patagonia to Harshaw. For the most part, the road follows a stream up to Harshaw. It is a refreshingly attractive area which numerous places to camp, most with very nice shade trees. The road is now nicely paved although traffic is very light. Patagonia is an interesting town with quaint shops. Directions: as you enter Patagonia from the east on Hwy. 82, turn left right at the Post Office, then turn left on the first road which will be the road to Harshaw. Camp spots will start about 3 miles from Patagonia. Good place if you like it quiet. It's 8 miles from Patagonia to Harshaw.

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