The protected forest land can be accessed using several routes including AZ 87, AZ 188, AZ 288, AZ 260, US 60, US 77, US 80, US 89 and I-17. The land where the designated forest land sits was dedicated as a national forest in 1905. The Tonto National Forest is attractive to all sorts of visitors including those that enjoy the fun and recreational activities especially sports and those that just love nature.
In fact, the Tonto National Forest is one of the most visited national forests in the country. Some of the main attractions to the forest include diverse ecology comprised of conifer forests, canyons, desert, woodlands, and chaparral. The forest also includes eight wilderness areas that encompass 589,300 acres of land.
These wilderness areas are the home of several wildlife species including elk, coyotes, raccoons, bald eagles, skunks, long-eared owls, bobcats, and javelinas among many other animal species. Other attractions to the forest include Roosevelt Lake Visitor Center, Salt, and Verde rivers, several lakes including Saguaro, Canyon, Roosevelt, and Apache. Besides the lakes, there are also some reservoirs including Bartlett and Horseshoe reservoirs.
The forest is also home to prehistoric sites like the Sears-Kay ruins and Shoofly Village. Beyond these attractions, the forest is also popular for several other fun and relaxing activities like boating, fishing, sailing, camping, hunting, rafting, canoeing, water-skiing, swimming, target shooting, ORV riding, mountain biking, rock hounding, hiking, horseback riding, and interpretive programs.
Dog owners can bring their tail-waggers into Tonto National Forest as long as you remember to follow the forests strict rules including ensuring that your dog is always under your direct supervision. Your dog must always be on a leash, and you must ensure that your dog is always well-behaved.