Outdoor enthusiasts will want to conquer the hundreds of miles of designated trails in the immediate Prescott area. More than 15 distinctive named hiking, biking (and sometimes horse) trails wiggle through the natural scenic beauty of the community and the Prescott National Forest. Difficulty? From “Novice to “Expert.”
If you want water activities, you’ll enjoy the three local lakes — Willow and Watson, both on the northwest edge of the city. The third is Goldwater, maintained by the City of Prescott, the 15-acre lake is located in cool pine forests surrounded by rugged mountain areas. The City of Prescott has boat and bicycle rentals available at www.prescott outdoors.com, 928-925-1410. There are also Lynx Lake and Granite Basin Lake just outside the city limits. If you like kayaking, canoeing and fishing, you can visit any of these lakes. All have picnicking and camping sites.
Want to spend time in a park? The city boasts 16 of them, all with amenities that guarantee memorable times. Some are purely recreational — walking and exercising and picnicking. Others are specialized. Some are athletic parks — softball, baseball, soccer, tennis, basketball, skateboards, rink skating and the like. One in particular — Jim McCasland Willow Creek Park — features one of only four in the U.S. custom-created dog parks. Canines are the most welcome visitors. A complete list with locations is available on the city website prescott-az.gov/services/parks.
Don’t miss the Granite Dells, where unique rock formations thrust out of the ground and tempt hikers and rock climbers.
If you’re into birding, Prescott’s the place. More than 360 species of birds inhabit the area. The Prescott Audubon Society (prescottaudubon.org) can provide full details about where to go and when.
Tours: If having someone else do the driving while you do the enjoying appeals to you, go to www.visitprescott.com to find a local tour. Tours vary from purely sightseeing adventures to physically demanding activities such as rock climbing and mountain biking. All have expert guides to assure you’ll have a memorable experience.