Hot Well Dunes Recreation Area (BLM) South East of Safford, Arizona

Hot Well Dunes Recreation Area

After Leasburg we headed west toward Phoenix, Arizona.  Phoenix is quite a drive so we picked a place to boon dock just over the NM/ AZ border in between I-10 and HWY 70.  It ranges from flat desert to snow packed mountains. We arrived on Thursday and the place filled up on Friday and continued to be very busy and loud through the weekend.  A mass exodus Sunday morning because of wind, rain, snow and probably work on Monday has left the area fairly quiet.  Hot Well Dunes is geared towards OHVs and hot tubs.

WEBSITE/INFO: 4/4

http://www.blm.gov/az/st/en/prog/recreation/camping/hot_well.html

The website is perfect. It gives all the details needed for knowing what to expect. 

FACILITIES/SITE QUALITY: 3.5/4

We are definitely boon docking, but paying $3.00 a day.  The sites are flat, but we think originally created for tents and trucks not 5th wheels and trucks.  Some of the sites are small and not ideal for big rigs.  I say that, but we only saw one tent and quite a few toy haulers. We camped in site 3. It was a bit tight, but we made it work.

You can camp for free outside the Hot Well Dunes area because this is all federal land.

There are vault toilets. (NOTE: BYOTP 😉 )  Trash is picked up twice a week.

The hot tubs are solar powered so make sure to visit when the sun is out!  They fill up in the late afternoon. I’d suggest that you visit the hot tubs between 8 AM and 10 AM on a weekday if you want a tub to yourself. 

LOCATION: 3.5/4

We took HWY 70 from I-10 (Las Cruces, NM) and drove in from the North. From HWY 70 it is about 25 miles down a poorly paved road (Haekel Rd).  Safford, AZ is about 45 minutes away on HWY 70. Chris and I took turns riding our motorcycles into town for gas and some odds and ends at Wal-Mart.  Ally got a little excited on her new long leash and broke the clasp on her collar so Chris rode to Safford to get her another one.

PET FRIENDLINESS: 3/4

While there are miles upon miles of trails, they are for OHVs and not hikers or dogs.  At the entrance there is a very short hike around a wildlife pond. We took Ally for a jog south of the area on Haekel rd. There is an occasional car from the south.

OVERALL RATING: 3.5 /4

Hot Well Dunes is a great place for OHVs and on sunny days, hot tubers. It was acceptable for us because it was cheap, flat, and the appropriate distance from Las Cruces.  The website says that there are only 10 sites.  25 miles on a bumpy road is a far distance to find that the area is full.  Fortunately we arrived on a Thursday and it seems that there is plenty of space.  If you have any questions talk to the camp host.  If you find the site to be full, it is ok to camp in the surrounding area as long as you are off the main road and 1/4 from water.  Be careful there are cows in the area.

 

OHV Note:  If you are going to ride and OHV you must have a red/ orange flag.  Chris and I were unable to ride the dunes because we have road motorcycles. 

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