Hidden behind reeds on the west side of the Sheep Bridge in Yavapai County, Arizona, is a hidden gem of a hot spring. The Sheep Bridge Hot Spring tub is open all day year-round for soaking, and if you are a nature lover, then you are sure to find many other attractions in the area as well.
The Sheep Bridge stretches above the Verde River. It was originally built in the 1940s to help sheep cross over. Though the bridge was demolished in the 1980s, a replica was built since then to help hikers and other visitors get across the river. Today, the original suspension tower remains in addition to this replica bridge, and while there are no longer sheep in the area, it has become a very popular destination for visitors.
Natural Hot Springs Pools
The long drive up to Sheep Bridge can be hectic and it may be crowded near the bridge, but thankfully, the hot springs will allow you to escape and relax. The small tub is lined with river rocks and can fit about two or three people comfortably. The mineral water is clear and warm with a temperature of about 100 degrees. While soaking in the hot tub, you are sure to appreciate Arizona’s natural beauty.
Swimming, Rope Swinging and Cliff Jumping
If the hot spring water and Arizona heat become too much for you, then head back to the Verde River for a quick swim. If you are feeling adventurous, you can even take a plunge into the river with the rope swing or from a jump-off point. You can also take a walk on the Sheep Bridge, which offers great views of the hills and mountains in the area.
Just one afternoon may not be long enough to enjoy everything that the Sheep Bridge and nearby hot springs have to offer, so you can choose to take part in a primitive camping experience in the area for up to 14 days. Keep in mind that there are no restrooms or stores in the park, so you should come prepared with everything you may need.
While weekends can be crowded at Sheep Bridge, a weekday getaway will allow you to truly relax and enjoy your surroundings. If you happen to be in central Arizona, be sure to plan an excursion to Sheep Bridge Hot Springs. You are sure to be impressed by the activities, views, and beautiful views available to you.
From Carefree, drive down Cave Creek Road for 33 miles. Turn right onto Forest Road 269 and drive for 12 miles. You will reach the Sheep Bridge, and the hot springs are close by.
Address: northeast of Phoenix Valley, Tonto National Forest, Arizona
Season: Year round