(Courtesy of the Heber-Overgaard Chamber of Commerce)
Pine Meadows Country Club provides golfing enthusiasts nine holes of golf and breathtaking views of the area surrounding Overgaard. In addition to golf, the site offers golf carts, a clubhouse, restaurant and bar.
Within 30 minutes of Heber and Overgaard are no less than 5 recreational fishing lakes, just perfect for that relaxing afternoon of angling!
Black Canyon Lake is the closest, and most popular lake. Stocked in the summer with rainbow trout, Black Canyon Lake can be accessed directly from Heber via dirt road ( Forest Road 86) or from Highway 260. Another favorite is Willow Springs Lake which offers anglers the added challenge of large mouth bass fishing. Trolling is especially popular on this lake.
Other nearby lakes include Woods Canyon Lake, Bear Canyon Lake, and Chevelon Canyon Lake. Anglers are advised that Chevelon Canyon Lake allows only artificial lures and flies, but offers some of the largest brown trout in the region. Take plenty of water, though, as it’s quite a hike into and out of the lake.
For fly fishing, try Chevelon Creek in spring and early summer downstream (i.e. north) of the lake or Canyon Creek, approximately 4 miles off the Young Road (Forest Road 512) 22 miles west of Heber. Canyon Creek Hatchery is located on the creek, and offers daily tours operated by the Arizona Game and Fish Department. Fly fishermen are often found on Willow Springs Lake , either on the shore or out in their float tubes.
There are over 15 different hiking trails within 30 minutes of Heber and Overgaard, ranging in difficulty from easy to “most difficult” as classified by the U.S. Forest Service. All boast an abundance of beauty in and around the Mogollon Rim at elevations ranging from 7900 feet down to 6500 feet. Here are a few examples listed by difficulty.
Rim Lake Vista Trail (easy) This 3-1/2 mile trail meanders along the Mogollon Rim and provides spectacular views overlooking the Rim. Interesting rock outcroppings can be seen along the way. The main trailhead is located just west of State Highway 260 along Forest Road 300. Forest Road 300 is located approximately 26 miles west of Heber, immediately across from the Rim Visitor Center. Be careful in July and August during thunderstorms – get out of the open and off the rim to avoid lightning strikes.
Willow Springs Loop Trail (moderate) For a moderate trail, try the Willow Springs Loop Trail. Approximately 22 miles west of Heber-Overgaard, the trailhead is located just ½ mile north of Hwy 260 off Forest Road 237. Elk and deer can often be observed, especially in the summer, along this system of old logging roads. The trail is located in a Wildlife Habitat Area which is closed to motorized vehicle use to provide a "quiet" area for a variety of wildlife species. In October, the leaves of the aspen and oak trees provide a golden yellow contrast to the evergreens. The trail provides access to the edge of Chevelon Canyon for a beautiful view of the canyon. Hidden Lake and Jacob Well sinkholes can provide additional exploring opportunities and are accessible off Willow Springs Loop.
Drew Canyon Trail (difficult) This old pioneer trail, which was built prior to 1909, starts high in the ponderosa pine and firs. It originates at the Crook Trail, crosses the Hole-in-Ground gravel pit road and drops off of the Rim. The level trail from the Crook Trail to the road is flagged and blazed to aid in locating the trail. The trail down the Rim winds its way through pinyon pine, juniper, manzanita, and more. Dramatic views off of the Rim occur throughout the length of the trail and is one of the best trails to experience the scenic Mogollon Rim. Be sure to wear sturdy shoes and take plenty of water on this rather steep trail. To access the trailhead from Heber-Overgaard, drive west on Highway 260 for 24 miles to Forest Road 300; follow Forest Road 300 for 5.4 miles to Forest Road 9350. Turn south on 9350 and travel one mile.
Horton Spring Trail (most difficult) The first 1/4 mile of this trail is mostly level and very beautiful; then the trail drops steeply (a total of 1200 feet) giving some fantastic views. Pine, fir, and wildflowers grow along the upper portions of the trail. Just a short hike down offers scenic views. The trail connects with the Highline Trail 1 mile below. Take Highway 260 west from Heber approximately 24 miles, turn west on Forest Road 300. Travel west 15.7 miles, and the trailhead will be on the south side of the road.
The Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest offers additional trail information on their website.