SIERRA ANCHA TRAILS
First established in 1933 as a "Primitive Area," this 20,850 acre wilderness is full of surprises and is a pleasure to explore. The Sierra Ancha Wilderness is large in acres, but it is a very special wilderness that includes precipitous box canyons, high cliffs, and pine-covered mountains.
The extremely rough topography limits (and often prohibits) cross-country travel; however, there is an extensive system of trails (trail condition varies from good to poor). A wide variety of plant and animal species are found here. Species range from those found in the desert to those found at 8,000 feet.
The Sierra Ancha cliff dwellings are located on the Pleasant Valley Ranger District of the Tonto National Forest, within the Sierra Ancha Wilderness. Built on ledges and in crevices within the short precipitous canyons flanking Cherry Creek, the Sierra Ancha cliff dwellings were constructed of stone slabs and blocks laid in mud mortar, plastered over, with roofs and floors of heavy timber beams layered over with branches and grass and finished with alternating layers of earth and stone.