Tres Alamos Wilderness Area

Wilderness Management Plan

Location and Description

The 8,300-acre Tres Alamos Wilderness is in Yavapai County, 80 miles northwest of Phoenix, Arizona and six miles south of the Santa Maria River.

The eastern part of the wilderness takes in the scenic ridgelines, canyons and washes of the southern Black Mountains, whereas the western side consists mainly of lower desert bajada and plains. Sawyer Peak at 4,293 feet, is the highest point in the wilderness and in the Black Mountains. The colorful monolith of Tres Alamos is the area's most striking landscape feature. Saguaro and paloverde cover the hills and bajadas; Joshua trees and creosotebush dot the plains, and mesquite and acacia line the washes. Wildlife includes the Gila monster, prairie falcon, and golden eagle, and possibly Cooper's hawks and kit fox.

All of the area offers landscapes suitable for hiking, backpacking, sight-seeing, photography and camping. Equestrian use would be good on the bajadas and plains. The area would be equally enjoyed by both experienced and novice backcountry users.


From Wickenburg, follow highway 60 west to Wenden.  Turn north onto a paved road toward Alamo Lake State Park.  Turn right (east) onto a bladed dirt road at milepost 28.  Drive 3 miles to the intersection with Alamo Lake Road at the Wayside RV Park.  Turn right (south) on Alamo Lake Road, drive 0.5 miles and turn left (east) onto Palmerita Road. Drive 5.3 miles and turn right at intersection.  Drive 13 miles to the western boundary of Tres Alamos Wilderness.  A four-wheel drive vehicle is strongly recommended to gain access to this wilderness.  (See Map)


The summer climate in this wilderness unit is harsh. Daytime temperatures during the summer months are over 100 degrees. Temperatures are more moderate between October 1 and April 30th.

The terrain in Tres Alamos Wilderness is extremely rugged. A few old vehicle ways provide hiking routes in some places, but the most commonly used routes are the sand washes which dissect the area. Burro trails can sometimes be located and followed on uplands. No formal hiking trails exist in this wilderness unit.

Water is relatively scarce in this wilderness. Springs shown on topographic maps can generally be relied upon for drinking water, but a call to the BLM office to confirm this would be prudent. Purification of all water is a necessity.

Nonfederal Lands

Some lands around and within the wilderness are not federally administered. Please respect the property rights of the owners and do not cross or use these lands without their permission.

Related Maps

  • 7.5-minute Topographic: Date Creek Ranch NW, Malpais Mesa SW
  • 1:100,000 BLM Surface Management:  Alamo Lake
  • Game and Fish Management Unit 44A

For more information contact:

  Kingman Field Office
2755 Mission Boulevard
Kingman, AZ 86401-5308
Phone: (928) 718-3700
Fax: (928) 718-3761
Acting Field Manager:  Ruth Zimmerman 
Hours:  8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., M-F

"Man's deepest need for wilderness is as an aid in forsaking human arrogance and courting humility in a respect for the community and with regard for the environment."
Howard Zahniser, 1955