Palo Verde Trail offers access to many coves and stretches of shoreline, providing opportunities for swimming and angling. The trail winds through rocky outcrops and crosses several ridges and hill slopes offering scenic views of Bartlett Reservoir. This trail passes through the Arizona Upland Phase of the Sonoran Desert, featuring saguaro cactus, mesquite, palo verde and ironwood trees.
Bartlett Reservoir has been popular with anglers almost since the dam was constructed in 1939. Fish species include crappie, largeand smallmouth bass, channel and flathead catfish, carp, bluegill and green sunfish. Along with many partners, the USDA Forest Service is improving fish habitat by installing a variety of structures in strategic locations.
Closed to motor vehicles. Carry an adequate supply of drinking water. One gallon per person per day is recommended during hot periods. If you PACK IT IN, PACK IT OUT!! Portions of the trail are rough in places, and should be traveled with caution. Decomposed granite trail surface can be slippery. Water levels fluctuate seasonally based on precipitation and irrigation demand. Do not drink untreated water. Giardia, a protozoan, is in many water impoundments and streams. Water levels fluctuate seasonally based on precipitation and irrigation demand.
The south end of the trail begins near the northern edge of the Rattlesnake Cove Recreation Site. The trail roughly parallels the shoreline of Bartlett Reservoir, providing access to the shore, crossing washes and small ridges, and running along hill slopes. From Rattlesnake Cove Trailhead to SB Cove is 3.8 mi. A 1.2 mi. loop-trail intersects the main trail at two locations: about 0.5 mi. south of SB Cove and again at 0.8 mi. south of SB Cove. The loop-trail provides access to other trails.
Tonto Daily Pass required for parking: $6.00 per vehicle, per day.
January - December
South end: (1,840 feet elevation): at Rattlesnake Cove North end: (1,820 feet elevation): at SB Cove
3.8 - 4.7 miles