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“What a great day trip!”

Tonto Natural Bridge State Park
Ranked #2 of 18 things to do in Payson
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Tonto Natural Bridge State Park is located in central Arizona near Payson. It is believed to be the largest natural travertine bridge in the world. The bridge stands 183 feet high over a 400-foot long tunnel that measures 150 feet at its widest point. There are three hiking trails, a picnic area, and a group use area. Goodfellow Lodge at Tonto Natural Bridge State Park is a one-of-a-kind rustic hideaway in the middle of some of the most picturesque scenery in Arizona’s Rim Country. Nestled deep within Pine Canyon, this three-story cabin-style lodge was built in the 1920’s and has kept much of its early 20th-century charm. The lodge has 10 furnished bedrooms with private and communal restrooms, as well as a furnished basement suite with a private kitchenette with sink and refrigerator. The first floor features our beautiful wood cabin group dining area with picnic table seating, fireplace, and a large kitchen big enough for your group or catering company. Entertain on the outdoor veranda or the grass event area outside, or sit and spot any of our regular wildlife visitors, like deer and javelina. We invite you to visit Goodfellow Lodge and consider it for your next group visit, wedding, or overnight event.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Wheelchair access
Reviewed July 23, 2013

This was an easy hike in beautiful surroundings. Actually took my kids there twice in one weekend, with a small group the second day. A fairly easy hike but I recommend allotting at least three hours to see everything, more if you want to take your time.

Thank Glenn P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"gowan trail"
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"tonto natural bridge"
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"day trip"
in 57 reviews
"natural wonder"
in 36 reviews
"water dripping"
in 10 reviews
"hiking shoes"
in 27 reviews
"observation deck"
in 11 reviews
"hiked down"
in 10 reviews
"gift shop"
in 45 reviews
"slippery rocks"
in 11 reviews
"steep hike"
in 11 reviews
"pine creek"
in 14 reviews
"short trails"
in 8 reviews
"bring water"
in 24 reviews
"entrance fee"
in 18 reviews
"take your time"
in 21 reviews
"per adult"
in 9 reviews
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Reviewed July 12, 2013

Fairly easy hike down to see the natural bridge and a short 10 minute hike back uphill. Worth seeing and really didn't take too much time out of our day.

Thank JohnH19621
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 9, 2013

We'd seen all the fireworks in past years and decided to get away from the heat. Payson area camping has been a favorite of ours and so we drove up after a couple hours in Fountain Hills.

Woods Canyon Lake our destination is picturesque and cool so we set up camp at Aspen. Spillway is the adjacent campground. Both are very green with FOAP, Fir, Oak, Aspen and Pine and the air bore that soothing woodsy aroma. The morning brought some Elk herds close and sounds we heard at night now made sense. Apparently they will forage for scraps like bears do, if you leave stuff on tables etc. Ahem! wasn't me. Very cool to see them up close, unflustered yet wary of you being there in their home, reminding you as it were, of respect for them. The whole area here is on the Mogillon (MogYawn) Rim with hiking trails,some close to steep drop offs and endless views. Definitely lots of photo ops!

The lake offers great views with boating, fishing etc. and abounds in fern covered hiking trails among fairly dense woods. You can almost imagine Indians on horseback or the whizzing arrow into the tree courtesy of wonderful old movies. Such is the setting,with all the serenity and scenery one associates with it. Camping while listening to the wind and sounds of wildlife,bird and animal alike is somewhat therapeutic. Bait and tackle general store has other supplies/boat rentals and if in need of more, Payson is inside of an hour west or Forest Lake ten miles east for gas, and other sundry items. We enjoyed our long weekend thoroughly and swung by on forest road 87 on our way back to see and enjoy the natural splendour of Tonto Natural Bridge.

The grand kids were all over it and in awe of its raw beauty. Trickly, little water runoffs were nice to splash around in and the setting is nature at its finest. We left the RV in Payson and took the steep grade down by SUV. It was all worth it for the entire group. For the more adventurous there's abundant hiking also, if you've got the gear handy. Later when all were well and truly tired, we set off on our drive home as we stared back at its beckoning call to return. Oh yes we shall, many more times since it's just a couple hours from home. That makes it easy and tempting, needless to say.

Thank arun s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 8, 2013

I am not into hiking, but this is absolutely worth hiking for! My family of 5 hiked Gowan Trail to go right in front of the bridge, and with additional slippery but short rock hiking, we went UNDER the gorgeous natural bridge. My 9-yr-olds had no problem reaching under the bridge. My 5-yr-old was able to hike down and up the trail with my help of holding his hands. The short rock hiking from the viewpoint to under bridge was a bit more challenging, so my husband held his hands and carried him a couple of times. Just make sure to bring enough water to drink. It's quite an exercise for beginner like us, but it's totally worth it!

Thank daichisakura
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 8, 2013

We made a day trip up to Tonto State Park the weekend of July 4th, and it was well worth the trip. Before we actually went down to the Natural Bridge we made a pit stop for food in Payson. This little town has some traffic so be aware you might get slowed coming through here. When we arrived at the park entrance it was $5/per person, but my father who is retired military was with us so they gave 50% off so let them know if you have served for our country. There are plenty of restrooms if you need to use it before you hike anywhere. They will also give you a map at the entrance of the trails you can take and viewpoints to observe the scenery. Make sure to wear appropriate footwear if you plan to climb on the rocks, they get very slippery from the water falling from the bridge ceiling. I will rate the two trails they we climbed down; 1st- Anna Mae Trail: moderately steep but a walking trailing that I believe most could travel down. It brings you straight into the river bed and for those that don't want to or can't climb over rocks and boulders it would end there. 2nd- Gowan Trail: Mildly Steep and would be the one trail I would recommend to everyone to at least take to get the best view of the natural bridge. It is possible to travel between the Anna Mae trail through the natural bridge to the Gowan trail, which is what we did, but I would not recommend this to everyone due to some difficult terrain to climb across and wet surfaces. There were plenty of people doing it though. All in all I would highly recommend making a trip here with your friends and family to see the beautiful sights and learn about its history!

Thank Nathan J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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