Almost due north of Globe, Arizona, Rockinstraw Mountain is best known in some circles for being featured in the Louis L’Amour western genre novel Taggart.
"Adam Stark had found gold. In the confusion of the mesas and canyons near Rockinstraw Mountain, Stark, his wife, Consuelo, and his sister, Miriam, were quietly working a rich vein while keeping their presence a secret from raiding Apaches. Worried that his wife might leave him, Stark wanted to make enough money to take her to San Francisco, where she could enjoy the style of life she craved.
But when Taggart, a stranger on the run from a vicious bounty hunter, enters their camp, tensions soon mount. Consuelo, against all good judgment, cannot resist testing Taggart. Is he the man who can make her happy? Will he give her the life her husband cannot? With thousands of dollars of gold in his packsadles, the Apaches are now no longer Adam Stark’s only threat."
In real life, versus life in a novel, Rockinstraw Mountain in a nifty little desert peak with over 1,000 feet of prominence, surrounded by flaking hoodoos and jaw-to-the-floor views. The rugged scenery north across the winding Salt River, the rolling Apache Peaks, distant Four Peaks and the Roosevelt Reservoir are all visible, and the visitor can gaze down numerous canyons.
Rank: 2681st highest peak in Arizona
USGS Quad: Rockinstraw Mountain
Rank & Prominence: Lists of John
Getting There & Basic Route Info
Rockinstraw Mountain is roughly 15 miles north as the crow flies of Globe and about 21/2 miles south of the winding Salt River. Given the property ownership issues to the west and the rugged land surrounding the mountain, the only reasonable access is via AZ 188.
• From the junction of US 60 and AZ 188 northwest of Globe, head northbound on AZ 188 for about 7 miles.
• Turn right on Wilburn Road. Travel only a short distance before turning left on Hicks Road. Follow Hicks Road for roughly 2.25 miles.
• Right on FS 219. Here you will encounter a gate at the entry to a ranch. The gate indicates you will travel through private land to reach Forest Service land and this access can be revoked at any time. Please close all gates behind you (or leave them as you found them) and travel lightly through this area to preserve access for other travelers!
• Follow FS 219 through Horseshoe Bend Wash. Do NOT enter this wash if there is any chance of rain upstream due to risk of flash-flooding! The road is surprisingly smooth as it winds through the very narrow canyon.
• After about 7.5 miles, you will encounter a dirt road to the left. It may/may not be marked as Shute Springs Road (more than likely un-marked).
• You can look for parking near this junction. There are some pullouts if you proceed a bit up the road. The road very quickly goes to hell, and a high-clearance vehicle with a short wheel base is strongly recommended not long after the junction with FS 219. You can proceed via 4x4 all the way to the saddle west of Rockinstraw should you prefer, but do not have a strong attachment to the paintjob on your rig, expecting to bring home plenty of beauty marks and “Arizona pin-striping.”
• From the junction with FS 219, follow the deeply-rutted dirt road climbing gently through brush and scrub. The road will gain a saddle between Rockinstraw and the point southeast of Granite Peak.
• Head east up the slopes toward the first rock band ringing the peak. Look for a weakness in the rock that allows easy access. With patient route-finding, the terrain should not exceed Class 2+ or easy Class 3, max.
• After reaching the top of the first band, continue eastward across a broad plateau toward the band of rock surrounding the summit. Again, the going here should not exceed Class 2+ or easy Class 3, max, with careful and patient route-finding.
• The summit area is marked with a cairn and obvious. There is a USGS marker on the top. The southern end of the summit area is marked by a dark wooden cross.
From Junction of FS 219
Roundtrip Distance: 4.3 miles
Elevation Gain: 1,000 feet
YDS: Class 2+ or easy Class 3
Bushwhacking Rating: Desert B1
Nestled into a segment of the Tonto National Forest, surrounded by a combination of private ranchland and the San Carlos Indian Reservation. The only reasonable access is via AZ 188 from the east and passes through private ranch land. Signage clearly reminds the visitor that access through ranch gates can be revoked at any time.
Camping & Lodging
Rustic Camping Near the Peak
I really saw no place during my visit to this peak that I would like to call camp for the night. There is no water (all water needs to be hauled in) unless you’re willing to scrounge around to find a spring. The land is rugged and deeply carved by canyons.
Hotels in Globe
There is a limited selection of motels in the town of Globe. Check out the Globe Trip Advisor page http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotels-g31232-Globe_Arizona-Hotels.html for more information.
National Forest Service Campgrounds
There really are no designated National Forest Service Campgrounds near Rockinstraw Mountain. Check with the local ranger station about camping options before heading out.
Globe Ranger District
7680 S. Six Shooter Canyon Rd.
Globe, Arizona 85501
Weather & Seasons
• April, May and June are the dry season, July and August bring the monsoons.
• From May through September, daytime high temperatures can be searing.
• Expect winter days to be cool-to-warm and sunny, with cold nighttime lows.
Click for weather forecast
Climate Date Source: Western Regional Climate Center