Promontory Butte Trail [F.R. 764]

For those looking to add a little challenge and seclusion to the Rim Road Trail, this short but sweet spur trail onto Promontory Butte offers a tremendous overlook off the Mogollon Rim as well as access to numerous great camping spots and hiking trails.

Last Known Status: Open/snow possible Trail type: Out & back Length: 8 miles roundtrip Approx. time: 1 hour Traffic: Moderate
Permit Needed: No Current Info: Apache-Sitgreaves NF/Black Mesa District (928-535-7300) Nearest City: Payson Elevation: 7626'-7857' Best Time: Spring-Fall

Where to go:

From Payson, follow Highway 87 north 26 miles, then follow Rim Road Trail east for an additional 30.9 miles. If you’re coming from Highway 260 and doing Rim Road Trail in reverse, this trail starts south of F.R. 300 12.1 miles from the 260.


Trail Description:

Head south from F.R. 300. The road passes through the forest at a cool 7800’ of elevation. Numerous great dispersed campsites on both sides of the trail all the way to the rim. The trail quickly gets rockier with narrow sections and ruts. Stay left at 2.0 miles where a lesser road goes right. After this, the trail begins to drop downhill. The trail winds back and forth and splits at 3.2 miles. This is a loop so you could go either way, but we turned right.

After the split, the trail gets rougher and narrower as you approach the rocky face of the Mogollon Rim. Stay left just after 3.4 miles. The edge of the Rim is now within 100 feet. Proceed east and stay left at 3.9 miles. The trail returns to the split at 4.5 miles. Make sure to stop and check out the tremendous view. Be sure to watch kids and pets near the edge. It can be windy and careful footing is necessary. Many great campsites literally on the edge of the Rim at the end of the trail. Return 3.2 miles back north to F.R. 300 when you’re done.

Notes & Trail Ratings:

This trail is very short and a great addition to Rim Road Trail and other trails in the area. Consider camping in order to spend multiple days on the trail. Roundtrip, Promontory Butte Trail will take less than an hour. The total mileage is about 8 miles. We’ve rated this trail a ‘6’ out of ‘10’. Several rocky and rough spots make high clearance a must. 4WD recommended but not completely necessary. This is a high elevation trail – use caution when snow and ice are present.


Page last updated: 1/1/2019