PHOENIX – The Payson Ranger District campgrounds are now open except for the Upper Tonto Creek Campground which will most likely remain closed for the season due to heavy maintenance concerns.
The recreation staff on the Payson Ranger District have been working hard over the winter to convert the campgrounds from concession operated to Forest Service operated. Please note some important changes. None of the campgrounds will accept cash or check payments, and none of the campgrounds will sell firewood. A fee machine can be found at six locations and Scan & Pay is also available at two locations for payment. Recreation sites accepting Scan & Pay and/or fee machine payments:
Lower Tonto Creek Campground: Scan & Pay, No fee machine
Ponderosa Campground: Scan & Pay and fee machine
Houston Mesa Campground: Fee machine, No Scan & Pay
Christopher Creek Campground: Fee machine, No Scan & Pay
Sharp Creek Campground: Fee machine, No Scan & Pay
1st, 2nd, 3rd Crossing & Waterwheel: Fee machine located a few miles before recreation sites on Houston Mesa Road or can be purchased from vendors in town.
Payson Ranger Station: Fee machine, No Scan & Pay
The Scan & Pay option is available through the Recreation.gov app. Be advised, visitors should download and login into their Recreation.gov account before heading to the forest. Directions for using the Scan & Pay option are available online. Scan & Pay is the only option for fee payment at the Lower Tonto Creek Campground.
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