Consisting of 1.25 million acres to explore, Prescott National Forest has it all. There are areas to hike, bike, rock climb, camp, horseback ride, and all sorts of water sports. This is due to the fact that Prescott National Forest encompasses not just lakes and mountains, but a variety of elevations as well. The lowest elevation consists of vegetation most commonly associated with the Sonoran Desert. As you get higher this desert land scape turns into pinion pine and juniper trees. At the highest elevation you will encounter Ponderosa Pines. The Prescott National Forest borders many other Arizona forests including the Kaibab, Coconino, and the Tonto. The city of Prescott sits in the middle of the Prescott National Forest. On the west side of the city the mountain ranges include Juniper, Santa Maria, Sierra Prieta, and the Bradshaw Mountains. On the east side there are the Black Hills, Mingus Mountain, Black Mesa and the headwaters of the Verde River. This national forest has a rich history just like the town that it surrounds. Stories are still told about how Sam Miller was panning for gold when he was attacked by a cougar at Lynx Creek, and how General Crook’s flag flew high at Palace Station. Now days the park is primarily known for the many educational and learning programs they have in place. They have recreational activities and encourage youth to learn in the great outdoors. For more information of kids programs check out the Prescott National Forest online where their moto is “Life is for Learning”.