Water Wheel Falls
Trip Start Jun 27, 2008
1Trip End Jun 27, 2008
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I arrived early on Friday morning as to avoid the crowds, and to hopefully get the kinds of photos I was looking to shoot. I have always been fascinated with water. Growing up in San Diego, my family often visited the ocean. As a photographer being in nature and enjoying all the aspects it has to offer inspires me. I often travel and hike alone when I'm photographing in nature
I'm often asked what do I look for when I'm shooting. I simply tell people that for me certain things catch my eye, it might be boring to another person, but I might see it in a different light.
Upon arriving to the campground I follow the directions from the magazine that led me there. They did not say however which path to follow. Really there are only two main choices, right or left! I choose right. There was not anyone around to ask either. The path right led me "down stream" as I call it now. But non the less it was still beautiful, quite, and very peaceful.
Finding the main 40-foot water falls you need to walk to the left of the campground area, and take the far path to the left. I call this walk to the falls easy-to-moderate. There are a few areas that you need to watch your footing, and duck under some branches
The water is beautiful, and a bit chilly for me. But there was a small family there and the kids did not seem to mind it. I met some nice people while I was there. A local girl name Sara guided me to the top of the falls, and also showed me how to climb down behind the falls. The path in between the walls seems very narrow, but that did not stop a few boys from jumping off the cliffs and into the 20+ feet of water below. Pretty crazy, they asked me to jump with them......and I said heck no! Josh one of the boys who is from Tuscon gave me his contact information so I could send them some photos in the mail. If was nice of them to allow me to take some shots of them.
That is how my day ended there. So I packed up. Grabbed a quick snack while I wrote some thoughts down, along with directions of how to get here.
From Phoenix, go north on Highway 87 to milepost 254 (about 2 miles north of downtown Payson) and turn right onto Houston Mesa Road (forest road 199). Go about 7.4 miles and pull into the Water Wheel Campground and park. The GPS coordinates to the camground are N34° 21.048' W111° 17.128' You can cut and paste these into Google maps.
Oh I almost forgot to tell you this. If you want a great place to eat on your drive back to Phoenix. Just south of Payson on Hwy 87 about 10 miles there is a little town with a restraunt on the east side of the road called "Dry Creek Cafe" Its a great little country-western cafe with wonderful food, and great service. If you can ask for Erin she was wonderful!