WILLIAMS RECREATION

Buckskinner Park offers picnicking, hiking, and reservable group ramadas one mile south from Route 66 via 6th Street. Buckskinner Trail #130 begins here and heads west to Clover Spring in 0.5 mile one way and connects with the Clover Spring Loop #46 for a total of two miles roundtrip; it's a moderate hike with some hills. You can also hike the Clover Spring Loop and other trails from the Bill Williams Mountain Trailhead beside the Williams Ranger District Office. The Forest Service's four campgrounds (see Accommodations) offer picnicking options farther out from town; Dogtown has a free picnic area, but there's a $5 day-use fee if you use tables at any of the campgrounds.
    Mountain Ranch Stables (behind the Quality Inn, 928/635-0706) offers a variety of trail rides from one hour to overnight, year-round; it's just south of I-40 Pittman Valley Exit 171, six miles east of Williams. Stable in the Pines (beside the Circle Pines KOA, 928/635-1930) has summer horseback riding; it's three miles east at I-40 Exit 167, then east 0.4 mile on the north frontage road.
    Play golf on the rolling greens of the 18-hole Elephant Rocks Golf Course (928/635-4935, about mid-March to mid-Nov.). Go west on Railroad Avenue across I-40 (or take I-40 Exit 161 and head north), drive 1.5 miles, turn right at the entrance, and continue past natural boulders that resemble a herd of elephants.
    Downhill-ski in winter at the small Elk Ridge Ski and Outdoor Recreation Area (928/814-5038, www.elkridgeski.com) four miles south of town on Bill Williams Mountain, which offers a 2,000-foot poma lift (600 vertical feet), 700-foot rope tow for the beginners' slope, lessons, snack bar, rental shop, and ski shop. The season runs approximately mid-Dec. to late March; call for conditions. Turn south 2.2 miles on Fourth Street, then right at the sign.
    Spring Valley Cross-Country Ski Trail has three loop possibilities of 6.5-8 miles each, rated easy to moderate; the season at the 7,480-foot-plus elevations runs winter to early spring. Spring Valley is 14 miles east to I-40 Parks Exit 178, then north six miles on Forest Road 141; Forest Service offices have a ski trail map. Undeveloped cross-country ski areas include Sevier Flat and Barney Flat on the way to Williams Ski Area and the White Horse Lake area.
    Oak Hill Snowplay Area is eight miles east of town on I-40 to the Pittman Valley Road/Deer Farm Exit 171, then east 2.4 miles on Route 66 on the north side of I-40. Only inner tubes and other flexible materials may be used. Separate runs accommodate tubers and skiers.

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