Watson Lake (Prescott) by Michael Wilson
See a different side of Arizona’s mining legacy in the small town of Hayden, about 70 miles north of Tucson.
Though Hayden doesn’t have roots in directly pulling ore from the ground like many of Arizona’s storied mining towns, it’s history began with the building of the Hayden Smelter, which takes raw copper ore and removes the impurities to make pure copper ingots. Overlooking the town, the smelter’s 1,001-foot-tall chimney is the tallest free-standing structure in Arizona.
Outside the town, the Dripping Spring Mountains to the north and the Tortilla Mountains to the south offer numerous secluded hikes and picturesque picnic spots. The Gila River runs through a valley between the two mountain ranges, and tributaries on each side provide dramatic views, with shallow creeks trickling through the desert vegetation. Amidst the scenic natural landscape, you’ll also find remnants of mining activity from days past to give you a sense of history.
Visit City Site
Copper Basin Chamber of Commerce | 355 Alden Rd. | Kearny, AZ | (520) 363-7607 | www.copperbasinaz.org/
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