Agua Fria National Monument is located along I-17 between Phoenix and Camp Verde, Arizona. "Agua" is a nice word to hear in Arizona, and there is plenty of it in the picturesque canyon where the river resides. This oasis in the desert, the Agua Fria River, makes for excellent wading and swimming on a hot day. The river canyon is also a great place to view wildlife.
Over 450 prehistoric sites have been discovered on the monument. There are several Native American petroglyphs which can be found on the surfaces of boulders and cliff faces. 4 major settlements have been found in the monument.
This is a rugged and rocky landscape and hiking cross-country is often difficult. However, there are many jeep roads which make for great hiking and mountain biking. Hiking the washes and canyons is exciting, though some can be a challenge due to the large boulders.
The scenery itself makes a trip to Agua Fria National Monument worthwhile, and if you visit in the spring you'll likely be treated to a colorful display of wildflowers.
Agua Fria National Monument Video Slideshow
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Agua Fria National Monument Camping: RV camping, boondocking, car camping, and tent camping is allowed at Agua Fria National Monument, with a limit of 14 days. You can find places to camp along Badger Springs Road (exit 256) and Bloody Basin Road (exit 259). These roads are rough and a high clearance vehicle is best. I was able to find a spot to camp with my 25 foot 5th wheel trailer along Badger Springs Road, but it wasn't easy. A smaller RV would be better suited for camping in this area - something like a truck camper is ideal.
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