For the most part, the Arizona Trail resupply options are well spaced, so that one doesn’t need to carry too many days of food. One of the nice things about the Arizona Trail is the easy access to towns along the trail.
We prefer to carry fewer days of food, so that means that we had quite a few resupply stops. Some hikers prefer to carry more food and go into towns less frequently…it is just a matter of personal preference. On this trail, we mailed all of our food, instead of buying in towns along the way…SweetPea had a gluten-free diet and Beardoh had a low sugar diet on the trail, so mailing our food just made things easier. Qball did a mix of mail drops and buying his resupply in towns. This worked out really well for us…we never had the problem of having to wait in town until we were able to pick up our package. We did ship two packages to post offices, but were able to make it to the post office during their open hours without any problems.
We figured we would give a run down on the resupply options for the trail, and what we did for resupply. We hope this information will be helpful for other hikers planning a thru hike.
Our Arizona Trail Resupply Plan
Patagonia (Mile 52.8 NOBO): We mailed our package to the post office in town. The trail goes right by the post office, so it was very convenient. Qball bought all of his resupply at the grocery store near Velvet Elvis Pizza joint. Typical country store food options and prices. We realized after Qball bought his food, that there was another grocery store in town (continue down the road past Gathering Grounds) which seemed to have more healthy food options.
La Posta Quemada (Mile 118.8 NOBO): We all mailed a package to La Posta Quemada which worked well, since the store (which holds the packages) is just a short quarter mile walk off the trail. When we went through (early March), the snack bar wasn’t open daily yet, and we arrived on a day it was closed. So, our “treat” options were sodas, candy bars, chips, and microwave popcorn from the gift shop.
Summerhaven (Mile 185.6 NOBO): We chose not to resupply in Summerhaven, since it was so close to Oracle, where we had a package waiting for us. They do have a general store which has the standard country store food and prices. The general store owners are very friendly and will accept mail drop packages for hikers, as well.
Oracle (Mile 206.6 NOBO): We all mailed packages to the Chalet Motel in Oracle. The owners of the motel are extremely friendly and helpful to hikers. They will pick you up from the trailhead, and will also drive you around town to get food and run errands. There is no grocery store in Oracle, but there is a convenience store and a Dollar General which you could use to cobble together a resupply.
Superior (Mile 301.6 NOBO): Since we were staying with our friends who live near Picket Post Trailhead, we didn’t need to resupply in Superior.
Roosevelt Lake (Mile 346.7 NOBO): We all sent a package here for resupply. When we arrived (it is a short half mile walk off the trail), we were a bit confused about where we should go to pick up our package. We ended up calling the number we had for them, and realized our package was at the marina (which is out in the lake). There were a few snacks, sodas, and ice cream bars to be bought at the marina store. The food is pretty pricey, but it is a nice spot to stop and hang out for a bit. Be sure not to drink the water straight out of the sinks at the grill, as it is not potable. Qball drank a liter of it before we were told to treat it. Luckily, he didn’t get sick, and we got some good laughs out of it.
LF Ranch (Mile 440.3 NOBO): We all sent a package to LF Ranch as there is no other way to resupply at this location. We did opt to sleep and have dinner at the ranch. We would definitely recommend arranging for dinner at the ranch…great home cooked food and huge amounts so every hiker can feel full.
Pine (Mile 463.9 NOBO): We sent a package to That Pub and Brewery, and Qball resupplied at the local grocery store. The grocery store was decent sized and it was easy to find good food for resupply. The town of Pine is not too big, so there is not a lot of walking required to resupply. That Pub and Brewery is located about one mile from the road crossing. The grocery store is about a half mile further down the road.
Mormon Lake (Mile 538 NOBO): We all sent a package to Mormon Lake. There is a small camp store (where you can pick up your package), which is a quick mile on a side trail. You could resupply at this store in a pinch, but the prices are a bit high. We spent several hours at the camp store escaping from the frigid morning, drinking hot beverages and eating snacks.
Flagstaff (Mile ~575 via the Town Route): There are several large grocery stores which you pass (or come very close to) along Route 66 (the Town Route). Since it is a larger town, you may need to walk a mile or so between your lodging and a grocery store. We sent a package to the Grand Canyon International Hostel. This worked out well, since we stayed there and it was close to many good and interesting restaurants.
Tusayan (Mile 691.3 NOBO): We all shipped a box here to the Tusayan General Store. When we arrived, we realized that our package was left in the the post office which is in the Tusayan General Store (about a quarter mile off the trail). We arrived on Saturday and were told that the postal worker only sorts the mail on Saturdays, but does not stay there to hand out packages. Luckily, the nice people in the General Store were able to get into the post office and retrieve our package. One could easily resupply at the Tusayan General Store, but beware that the prices are quite high.
Jacob Lake (Mile 770.8 NOBO): We all shipped a package here for resupply. The Jacob Lake Inn (several miles off trail) does sell a few snacks, and they have a bakery (very limited offerings when we went through in mid-April) but it would be very hard to buy your whole resupply here.
There are additional Arizona Trail resupply options, which we did not go to. We did hear a some tidbits about a few of the other resupply towns…there is a shower at the library in Globe which hikers have been able to use…The Old Time Pizza will deliver to the Florence-Kelvin road trailhead and if you want to go into Kearney, the delivery guy may be willing to take you back into town.
For those who have the ability or access to cache food along the trail, there are a couple optimal Arizona Trail Resupply spots in the southern portion of the trail. There are two locations between Oracle and Superior, where bear boxes have been installed at trailheads. There is often water cached for public use, but you can also cache your food in these boxes. The locations are:
- Freeman Road (Mile 236.6 NOBO)
- Florence-Kelvin Road (Mile 262.9 NOBO)