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Mount Ord Lookout

1 Review
Location Payson, AZ
Rating Moderate,
Length 12mi
Time 4hrs

Vehicle Types


Climb to unmanned forest lookout tower.

High scenic views as you climb 7,128-ft. Mount Ord to a Forest Service lookout tower. A locked gate requires that you hike the last 0.6 miles to the tower. Views are impressive at ground level at the base of the tower. Look for a great camp spot along first part of F.S. 626. Coming down, you’ll pass through Ord Mine as the trail winds along the mountainside. Route is open to unlicensed vehicles.


Trail Ratings Defined

F.S. 626 is well maintained. F.S. 27 is narrow, rocky and washed out in spots with tight brush. Less aggressive stock SUVs should return via F.S. 626.






High Point


Best Time To Go


Current Conditions

(480) 610-3300Tonto N.F., Mesa Ranger District

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Trail Updates

Submitted by Russ
We did this trail backward starting with the “intermediate” section first. Our group had 10 Jeeps of highly experienced drivers. The trail is extremely washed out due to recent monsoons! It was literally a game of inches conquering a washout or plunging to your death hundreds of feet below. We had to turn back after nearly 3 miles of the trail due to impassible conditions. It took us almost 8 hours to drive 6 miles!!! DO NOT GO!

Tonto National Forest has removed the temporary closure due to the fires for this trail. Road conditions may have changed, don’t go alone.

Tonto National Forest temporary closure. Due to several fires, this area has restrictions. Read forest order here. For updates go to N.F. website for alerts and notices.

Submitted by Trent Anson
The road out (that is rated moderate – which it is) on the Mt. Ord trail is severely washed out and narrow now. It got pretty sketchy at times. If you’re afraid of heights this isn’t the trail for you.


Rate this trail on a scale of 1 to 5.


Rod Sutter says

Took This trip on April 1, 2018. This was a very fun trail, our group of friends and family, & 6 vehicles, took this trip. The front side was an easy maintained dirt road. The gate was closed to the towers, so we stopped and shot some pictures, then decided to take the northern road out just to see what it was like. There was only one rough spot where there was small hills. It sure gave our suspensions a good work out but no one had any problem going down. It would be a different story if we were headed up that way. One of the vehicles was only 2WD, he had no problem going down, again this was a fun trip
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