Home Custom Jewelry Wildlife Photography Wildlife Illustrations Publications About Us Contact Us

Back to Short Nature Hikes

Hike #44 – Woodland Lake, Turkey Track Trail to foot trail along Walnut Creek and back (Option 1)

Lush vegetation and many flowers grow along the creek
Lush vegetation and many flowers grow along the creek

Location: From the Pinetop Post Office on SR 260 (map):

  • Drive east on SR 260 from the Pinetop Post Office 0.3 miles and turn right (south) on Woodland Lake Road.
  • Drive 0.2 miles and as the road bends south, turn right into the Woodland Lake Recreation Area.
  • Drive to the end of the road and park in the parking lot.

Trail: The trail is all dirt, wide in places and narrow and rough with rocks in others.

Trailhead and Directions: When you park, the lake will be to the south. The Turkey Track trail is on your right (north). Walk this trail for 0.43 miles and find the narrow signed “Foot Use Only” trail on the left. Follow this narrow trail down to the margin of Walnut Creek. Walk to the right along the creek for about 0.8 miles until you come to the wooden bridge. Do not cross the bridge but continue straight and then up the hill to the right and return to your car on the Turkey Track Trail.

Access: Hikers only on the creek side trail. No handicapped access.

Distance: It is about 1.2 miles from the parking lot by the lake to the small wooden bridge and another 1.2 back to the lake.

Difficulty: Easy to moderate where the narrow walk-only trail drops down to the creek and again where it goes up through rocks on the other end.

Features: The trail passes through a mature Ponderosa Pine forest that has been thinned in the past. On the “foot travel only” trail, look for Claret Cup Cactus in spring, Creeping Barberry, Brickellia, and Torrey’s Craglily. The trail parallels Walnut Creek with lots of Coyote Willow, rushes, sedges, cattails, and many flowers like Golden Pea, Monkey Flower, Salt-spring Checkerbloom, Spotted Joe Pye Weed, False Hellebore, Arizona Mule Ears, gumweeds, Indian Hemp, Watercress, Nodding Groundsel, and many others.

Purple Martins, Violet-green Swallows, Red-faced Warblers, Common Yellowthroats, Red-backed Dark-eyed Juncos, Spotted Towhees, House Wrens, Hairy and Acorn Woodpeckers are common along the creek. Grace’s and Yellow-rumped warblers, jays, Plumbeous Vireos, Juncos, and Chipping Sparrows are in the open pine forest.

Connections: The Turkey Track Trail of the Woodland Lake Recreation Area, the Big Springs Environmental Area, and the White Mountain Nature Center trails are connected. See the Woodland Lake Area map.

Walnut Creek Loop Option 1 Map

Walnut Creek Option 1 Loop Map
Download Map

Woodland Lake Area Map

Woodland Lake Loop
Download Map

© Birchside Studios. All Rights Reserved