Boulder Pass Trail | The alternative route to Crown King

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Route Details



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Boulder Pass Trail is a highly demanding 4WD adventure trail that will take 2 to 3 days to complete. This route incorporates Ruby Wash, a long-lost mild rock crawling trail. Its short distance will take you about 4.5 hours. This section is tight, overgrown with a single, highly technical waterfall. Heading north will take you down the waterfall. There is an alternate route that will take you around Ruby Wash.

You will experience various types of terrain, including deep sand, water crossings, steep grades, rock gardens, and off-camber washouts. You will find boulders 12 inches in diameter. Body damage and vehicle failure are possible. The trail is best completed from north to south for the best views.

Rock Crawlers: If you’re into Rock Crawling, this route likely won’t satisfy your technical requirements. Ruby Wash has a single waterfall that can be accomplished by any lightly modified 4×4 vehicle. For rock crawlers, this route is a walk in the park.

Starting Points: This route has a few optional starting points. All starting points begin in Morristown, Arizona.

  1. The long-lost Ruby Wash Trail is a mildly technical, short rock trail with just a few obstacles. This trail is narrow, lightly traveled, and has a single waterfall where rollover and body damage can occur. There is a small slot canyon and a mountain spring along this portion. The trail is indicated in red on the map.
  2. Morgan City Wash is an easy trail that’s suitable for any stock 4×4 vehicle. It starts and ends at Castle Hot Springs Rd, beginning West of Lake Pleasent, and travels north along the Hells Gate Wilderness. Its indicated in orange on the map.


Time2-3 days
LandBLM, USDA FS, AZTL, Private
Elevation5,592 Ft.
Fuel Stint88 Mi. 


There are several points of interest along this route, including Castle Creek Canyon, Bradshaw’s Grave, Copperopolis, Lehman Mill, and the well-known Crown King.


You will need at least a 2-inch lift with 33-inch tires and one locker. Recovery equipment should be on hand. Do not attempt this route alone.

Trail Write-ups

This write-up of the Boulder Pass Trail does not include Ruby Wash.

Important information

This route contains technical obstacles and should not be attempted alone.

Arizona Trust Land Permit is required.

Kevin Allard
Author: Kevin Allard

Kevin is an American outdoorsman born and raised in rural Arizona who grew up exploring the Arizona backcountry with his father. Today, he and his son travel to the most remote regions of Arizona, scavenging for the remains of early western pioneers. As a lifelong outdoorsman, Kevin has learned to stick close to his roots while engaging in important advocacy work regarding motorized access to public lands. You can find his work in many local and nationwide publications, including The Western Journal, 4Low Magazine, and his website


It is now more important than ever for motorized users to defend motorized access. For just 30 cents a day you can become part of the solution. Your support will help us meet our goals and continue to challenge the radical green agenda.