Turkey Creek Cliff Dwelling Photo by Chad Harris

Turkey Creek

Leave a review Turkey Creek Cliff Dwelling Photo by Chad Harris Turkey Creek Cliff Dwelling Photo by Chad Harris Turkey Creek Cliff Dwelling Photo by Chad Harris

Turkey Creek is a small riparian canyon that flows into Aravaipa and has cliff dwellings from 1300 A.D.

Photo by Chad Harris
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Contact Information

Bureau of Land Management
Safford Field Office
711 14th Avenue
Safford, AZ 85546

(928)348-4400

Turkey Creek Cliff Dwelling Photo by Chad Harris
Photo by Chad Harris

More about Turkey Creek

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Lined with large sycamore, Arizona walnut, and Arizona white oak trees, this narrow canyon provides a quiet retreat for picnicking and camping. Numerous small pull-outs along the three-mile length of the canyon are perfect for primitive camping. Day hiking is easy along the canyon bottom, a jumping off point to the east entrance of Aravaipa Canyon Wilderness.

Colorful birds, as well as an occasional deer, javelina, or even a coatimundi, can be seen on early morning walks along the dirt road. A short trail leads to a prehistoric cliff dwelling; remnants of 120 years of homesteading and ranching are visible in the canyon. Due to its rich natural and cultural resources, part of Turkey Creek has been identified as an Area of Critical Environmental Concern by BLM.

The Turkey Creek cliff dwelling is one of the most intact structures of its kind in southeastern Arizona. It was probably occupied for a few months each year by prehistoric farmers around 1300 A.D. These people, of the Salado culture, probably collected plants along Turkey Creek, grew corn, and hunted wild animals. Salado farmers disappeared suddenly around 1450 A.D.

Directions: To reach Turkey Creek, drive 15 miles northwest of Safford on Highway 70. Turn west on Aravaipa-Klondyke Road and go approximately 45 miles, passing through the town of Klondyke, to the Aravaipa Canyon trailhead parking lot. From there, continue on the road, which turns left up Turkey Creek.

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Hiking and Walking Trails

Turkey Creek has the following hiking and walking trails available to the public.

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Hike to the cliff dwellings

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Camping

The following camping areas are available to the public in the Turkey Creek.

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Please use existing campsites

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