Iron Door Mine Trail
A drive into the mountains above the city to Bison Falls with a hike up and into an abandoned mine of solid rock where the risk of collapse is virtually nonexistent. The engine block of a wrecked WWII B-25 may be seen off a steep, optional trail nearby.
Base of Bison Falls
Time to Trailhead
From London Bridge:
Trailhead GPS coordinates:
N 34°32.658’ W 114°13.352’
Level of difficulty:
Strenuous, with climbing, long steep slopes
Length of hike:
Over the years, other mines in the area have been called the "Iron Door Mine." However, the directions provided here are for the best and safest of these mines.
Download Trail Map
Download BLM Topo Map
Destination GPS coordinates:
N 34°32.287’ W 114°11.551’
Directions to trailhead:
• Drive your off-road vehicle to the north end of Paso de Oro Dr (off Bison Blvd).
• Drive 1.2 miles on pink rock road until it forks.
• Keep right into Falls Springs Wash. If you go to the left, you will go to Sparks Mine and have to turn around.
• Drive out Bison Blvd past the end of the pavement. Go 1.3 miles around a hill until you arrive in a large clearing near the concrete base of an old water tank (elev 1985 ft).
• Turn left and go down the hill into Falls Springs Wash. Make a right just past a very small hill.
• No matter which option you choose, continue in Falls Springs Wash past two minor right turns to a point just before the road seems to run into a small mountain (2.8 miles).
• Turn right and continue about a mile to Bison Falls (3.7 miles from the end of Bison Blvd).
(It is possible for experienced offroaders to continue in a 4-wheel drive vehicle up and around Bison Falls to the end of the road, eliminating 3 miles (round trip) of this hike, but USE EXTREME CAUTION. You can bypass the falls on the right or left side, but the bypass to the right requires a narrow wheel base.)
Trail route instructions:
- Walk to the top of the waterfall using the road on either side (elev 2720 ft.). Follow the road up through the valley.
- [OPTIONAL-As you proceed along the road above the falls, a small side road will appear on the left about .85 miles from the base of the waterfalls. Taking this spur will take you up the mountain to a fork in the road. Go left and proceed up a narrow wash towards a large saguaro where you can view a rusted engine block of a wrecked WWII B-25.]
- Walk about 1.5 miles from the top of the falls to the fork at the end of the road (elev 3250 ft.). Turn left in the wash, go up a small dry waterfall just past a man-made rock structure and an old open well. Be careful! The well is open at ground level and although it has been filled in over the years, it is still very deep. Do not fall in!
- Look for a trail leading up the right bank. This is an original trail for the mine that was constructed by prospectors for burro traffic.
- The trail is long (3/4 mile), uphill, and steep, and ends at the mine, which looks like a gray ledge in the mountain (elev 3890 ft.). The mine is single level and carved from solid rock. It is relatively safe.
- Bring a good flashlight; you can go in about 600 ft. past an iron gate and through a multitude of different chambers. It is a clean, unobstructed journey. The imprint of railroad tracks is still visible on the floor in many places.
* Aesthetic Rating: The more stars, the more desirable the trail the in terms of remoteness, natural features and scenic beauty
Arizona hiking safety
The rugged beauty of the Lake Havasu City area, just down the Colorado River from the Grand Canyon, makes a lasting impression. But the desert can be hazardous. Many trails are unmarked and infrequently traveled. Please consider these suggestions to make the most of your adventure:
- Avoid hiking during the summer, approximately June 15 to September 15, when daytime temperatures can reach 120° or more.
- Do not hike in washes when heavy rainfall is anticipated to avoid the threat of flash floods.
- Always take plenty of water; plan to carry at least one quart of water for every four hours you hike in direct sunlight.
- Wear a hat, sunglasses with UV-protection, and sunscreen.
- Print off a copy of the trail map from this webpage and carry it with you if you the route is unfamiliar.
- Wear sturdy, thick-soled shoes and use a hiking stick if you easily lose your balance.
- Never hike alone and always let a responsible person know where you’re going and when you expect to return.
- Plan to leave on your hike early in the day to avoid the risk of being lost on the trail after dark.
- Travel light; the less you carry the more you will enjoy the hike.
- Leave nothing behind. We want our trails to remain beautiful for your return!