Mogollon Rim separates Arizona high country from desert

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If you spend enough time in or researching Arizona, you’re bound to hear the term “Rim Country.” It’s a reference to the part of the state made up largely of the Mogollon Rim. Most who experience the rim for the first time have a hard time putting it into words.

How the U.S Forest Service describes the Mogollon Rim:

A rugged escarpment that forms the southern limit of the Colorado Plateau. It extends across the entire forest and provides excellent views within Plateau Country and Desert Canyon Country as well. Views stretch from its rocky precipice to Four Peaks of the Mazatzal mountain range northeast of Phoenix. Needless to say, sightseeing is a favorite activity along the Rim, but this forest area also boasts a historic system of hiking and horseback trails, a couple of picturesque lakes for boating and fishing, and backcountry skiing for wilderness adventurers.

Dropping as much as 2,000 feet in some areas, the Rim provides some of the most far-reaching scenery in Arizona.

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In laymen’s terms, you could say the Mogollon Rim is the natural boundary where Arizona’s high country drops off into the desert below.

Weather conditions on the rim are considerably cooler than in the desert below. So much so that folks who live in the desert often escape the heat in the summer by retreating to rim country. Newbies to the area making the drive may wonder if the external thermometer displayed on the driver’s dash is malfunctioning as it climbs steadily with nearly every hundred foot drop in elevation.

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