I have a friend from home who grew up camping. His family camped, hiked, watched birds, rafted and went to cabins. It seemed like a cool way to grow up. I want my family to be a Family That Camps. Last year my youngest was nearly 4 so we decided to try it. Our neighborhood offered a group camp event at the Mogollan Rim. I had no idea what the Mogollan Rim was, I thought it was the Grand Canyon (I’ve never been). I was heartbroken when I found out it wasn’t.
I was overwhelmed by the Mogollan Rim. It is epic. In the picture, you can see Rim Road. I thought it was a joke, like those river and creek signs I see all over Arizona that designate just one more cracked dirt gulley. In this case it is a bona fide Rim and that green you see is a chasm of pine trees. It’s incredible. It makes you feel like you are in a breath mint commercial. And then I started to worry about my boy leaving the tent at night. We were a five minute walk from Rim Road. That night I told both boys a fantastic bedtime story about the pine trees turning into zombies, it was completely over the top. They loved it. Until it was dark and then they were too scared to go to the bathroom. Mission accomplished.
As this was our first time “unplugged” for that long my boys were at a loss. They are used to outings but they like their couch and Ben 10 time too. When the day stretched on and there was no TV and no iPad, they started to rebel. I looked around the campsite for an idea. It was too early to battle zombies. We really had nothing except lots of rocks.
I remembered something I saw on Pinterest. It was a labyrinth made out of stones. Well, we had a dirt patch, stones and plenty of time for what my Dad would call “a little honest work” We went to work building our own labyrinth. We talked about how if you stood inside the labyrinth the Zombies couldn’t get you. The boys were enchanted and it made our campsite look pretty cool.
The Cook Campground at Woods Canyon Lake is the most popular campground in the state. It has running water, outhouse, a lake, boat rentals, places to hike and ride bikes. The pathway on Rim Road is smoothly paved and wheelchair friendly. People of any age or ability benefit from the scenery. Look for a pull off parking space, scout a location and walk for a while.
We loved walking along Rim Road, it was spectacular. You can follow the link to read up on the camp site. It is a reasonable drive from Phoenix. We went in August and loved the cooler weather at that elevation. Christopher Creek is nearby, I hear that is another great place to camp, I haven’t been but I plan to go this year.