Woodchute Mountain Trail

Woodchute Mtn

Too Much View to Capture, Woodchute Mtn

Some of you just might be looking for a trail that is shooting nearly 2300 feet skyward. If so then follow the directions for the trailhead on Forest Road 318.
If your just looking for a trail that will get you out for awhile with unbelievable views, then follow the directions to the Potato Patch Trailhead.

I have only been on the Potato Patch Trail, and I do have some very fond memories of hiking it. I just can’t recommend this one enough. The first mile or so is not too strenuous at all. It just follows a ridge line out to Woodchute Mtn. At one point out on the ridge, you can see all of the Prescott area to the west, and all of the Verde Valley area to the east. It is just beautiful.

Once you reach Woodchute the trail starts a reasonably steep assent, tops out, then goes across to the north edge of the mountain. The views from here are astounding. There is simply too much for a camera to pick up. A great place to spend a little time.

Below is what the Prescott National Forest website has to say.
Or you can go there by clicking “Here”

This trail on the south side of Woodchute Mountain was established along what was once a bulldozer track. The bulldozer was used to create several cattle watering tanks on Woodchute Mountain. The top of the mountain is an open stand of second growth Ponderosa pine, the original forest having been completely cut years ago. When the copper mines at Jerome were in operation, loggers obtained shoring timbers for the mines from this mountain. They transported the logs by way of a chute extending down the north side of the mountain to loading platforms for the narrow gauge railroad which served Jerome. That railroad track is now Forest Road 318. There are splendid panoramic views from the mountaintop in all directions.

Access and trailhead location: The best access to this trail is from Highway 89A. Go to the Potato Patch Campground just east of the summit on 89A. Then take Forest Road 106 west for 0.3 miles to the power line. The trailhead is just under the power line. Forest Road 106 is suitable for high clearance vehicles in fair weather. This road is not maintained. This trailhead is scheduled to be moved closer to the Potato Patch Campground.

Alternate access from the Chino area is by way of Forest Road 354 to just south of Perkinsville. Take Forest Road 318 south from there, then west on Forest Road 318A for 1.3 miles to the north trailhead. Access from Jerome is also by way of Forest Road 318 around the north side of Woodchute Mountain.

Hiking time: 1 hour 15 min.
Length: 2.3 miles to top
Difficulty: Moderate
Use: Heavy
Notes: The use of any mechanized or motorized equipment, including bicycles, is prohibited.

Recommended season of use: Fall, Spring, and Summer.

Maps, other resources: Prescott National Forest, east half; USGS topographic 7.5′ quads for Munds Draw and Hickey Mountain.

Trail layout: From the south trailhead it is a fairly easy climb of 2.75 miles to the top of Woodchute Mountain, then another 3.5 miles down the north side to the north trailhead and the old narrow gauge road (Forest Road 318) to Jerome. The south ascent is the easiest since it only climbs 600 feet to the summit. From the top at 7,700 feet to the north trailhead the descent is 2,260 feet. There are some steep switchbacks on this side.

Precautions: There is no drinking water along this trail.