Prescott National Forest, Prescott
By Kelly Vaughn Kramer
Mingus Mountain Campground is — where else? — near the top of Mingus Mountain. The drive to the top of the Prescott-area landmark is stunning and, in relation to other forest drives, it’s a cakewalk
With sweeping views of Sedona and the Verde Valley, and its big, shady sites, you might consider Mingus Mountain the epitome of the Great Outdoors. And you wouldn’t be wrong. There’s plenty to do, from lounging in a wildflower meadow or beneath a grove of pines to hiking one of four trails that are accessible from the campground to taking a day trip into Prescott or Jerome.
To capture those amazing Verde Valley views, sites 5 and 27 are your best bets. There are no scenic losers at the campground, though. When it comes to mountain camping, Mingus Mountain takes the cake.
Campfire Tale: In the 1880s, Jacob and Joseph Mingus opened a sawmill at the base of the mountain that now bears their name. At 7,726 feet, Mingus Mountain is the highest point in the Black Hills mountain range.
PHOTO: Mingus Mountain Campground rewards visitors with sweeping views of the Verde Valley. | Morey K. Milbradt
Elevation: 7,500 feet
Directions: From Prescott, travel north on State Route 89 to State Route 89A and turn right. Continue on SR 89A for about 19 miles to Forest Road 104 and turn right. Follow FR 104 for about 4 miles to the campground.
Information: Bradshaw Ranger District, Prescott National Forest, 928-443-8000 or www.fs.usda.gov/prescott
Season: May through October
Fee: $10 per night
Amenities: Toilets, Pets, RV Hookups