Description: Rock challenges and thrills will delight the most ardent four-wheeler. There’s a great place to stop for lunch just below the summit. The northeast-side descent includes a functioning windmill, ruins of an old homestead complete with a hard-to-find waterfall, and the Wayfarer’s Inn. Watch carefully for bighorn sheep. If you stack rocks to get over obstacles, make sure to remove them when you are done. This is a nasty, dangerous trail that should be driven with at least two other vehicles. Besides an array of challenging rock obstacles, the road climbs over 2,000 feet through the heart of the Black Mountains. Much of the road is loose, steep gravel. One spot, along the edge of a narrow shelf, requires a sharp inside turn. As your vehicle rounds the bend, your rear outside tire drops into a gravelly low spot. Power must be applied at just the right time to reduce the possibility of going over the edge. Recently a new loop, dubbed the Bob Miller Extension, has been added to the trail. To start the route, you must get around a 15-ft. vertical wall then drop down a very steep embankment. The descent down the northeast side is relatively easy albeit somewhat long and dusty. Stock, high-clearance vehicles can drive up to the top from this side with little difficulty.
Time & Distance: This trip can be completed in 4 to 5 hours under ideal circumstances. Better to allow a full day. From Hwy 68 it’s 7.2 miles to the top of Sleeping Princess and an additional 19.8 back down.
Trail Conditions: Bureau of Land Management, Kingman Field Office. Call (928) 718-3700.
Directions to the Trail: Turn northwest off Hwy 68 about a tenth of a mile northeast of mile marker 8.
View Sleeping Princess in a larger map for even more DETAILS!
Get yourself and your TOY ready for the trip: Make sure both you and your vehicle are ready for your next adventure.
Before you venture out on your offroading trip you need to make sure you are prepared for emergencies. Even if nothing happens to you or your vehicle, you might come across someone who needs help. Short of always having your full-on Bug-Out-Bag with you, you should at least have some basic emergency items. It might seem obvious to some, but you should get yourself a tool box with appropriate tools and leather gloves, good first aid kit, fire extinguisher, set of jumper cables, emergency blankets (stored in heavy plastic bag – both are useful), flashlight, tow strap and some extra water. I would also suggest a recovery strap, a military folding shovel, heavy duty garbage bags, and a hand crank self powered weather radio. These items are not expensive, but they just might save your day.
Another thing you should definitely do before you leave is to save Joe’s number in your cellphone in case you find yourself in need of recovery in the middle of nowhere. Joe is the owner of Arizona 4×4 Off Road Recovery and has become a real hero to many in the Arizona offroad community. His number is (602) 697-8306.
If you’re ready for a next adventure and want to plan it right, check out some of these trail guides – Arizona has so many awesome destinations to explore!