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"Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths."
- Proverbs 3:5-6
October 2022
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Tortilla Flat: Experience Old West History at a Nearby Destination
Nestled in the middle of the Tonto National Forest in the Superstition Mountains is a stop in the road that is a fun and engaging family destination that lets you step back in time and enjoy the sights and sounds of a simpler time. Tortilla Flat is a former stagecoach stop founded in 1904 that is stop in the road along the Historic Apache Trail. In case you’re wondering, the official population is six. Interestingly, Tortilla Flats is owned by Katie Ellering who is at the helm of the fun and engaging experiences to be found in the small colorful town.

Before settling into the restaurant for something to eat, take a jaunt down the boardwalk and experience the recently renovated jail. The fun photos opportunities speak for themselves!

Tortilla Flat features the Superstition Saloon and Restaurant that serves up a hearty menu featuring meals to satisfy the hungriest of cowboys and cowgirls. Delicious and hearty options include breakfast burritos with green chile or chorizo and classics like biscuits and gravy and breakfast sandwiches. Signature morning meal choices include the famous hangover hash, featuring a generous helping of crispy hash browns topped with country ham, bacon, tomato, bell pepper, onions, melted mixed cheese, two eggs over medium, green onions and homemade cactus salsa verde for only $14.49. Or dive into The Dirty Bird — fried chicken buttermilk biscuit sliders smothered in rustic sausage gravy, drizzled with buffalo sauce and topped with green onions for $12.29.

Menu selection after breakfast include temptations such as carne Asada Fries; Southwest Egg Rolls; Killer Chili Dog; El Mesquite Reuben; and burgers and chicken sandwiches like the Bull Rider (featuring whole roasted Anaheim green chiles, cream cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion) for $13.49 and the Dutchman’s BBQ with prickly pear BBQ sauce, bacon, melted cheddar cheese, pickles and crispy fried onion strings for $13.89. Breakfast is served 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Lunch begins at 10 a.m. Monday through Friday and 10:30 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

After a hearty meal, guests can mosey around town, check out the museum, schoolhouse, general store and ice cream shop. Don’t miss the chance to enjoy a scoop of the famous prickly pear gelato. The Mercantile and Gift Shop also features Indian pots, jewelry and knives, authentic cowboy hats and Southwestern specialties. A collection of fun historic photos is also an engaging way to learn about the history of the area, the people who traveled through the area and the events that helped shape the area.

The nearby iconic Dolly Steamboat is a traditional style paddlewheel boat that launches year-round offering a 90-minute scenic nature cruise, twilight dinner cruise, astronomy dinner cruise or private charters on Canyon Lake. Guests meet at the Dolly Steamboat dock (16802 AZ-88, Tortilla Flat, 85117) to check in and then launch on to Canyon Lake for a grand adventure that is a perfect afternoon or evening featuring scenic vistas, towering canyons and glimpses of a variety of desert wildlife.

The Dolly Steamboat got its name from the original owners, Dolly and Paul Kennedy who founded the company in 1983. In October of 1987, Roger and Margie Grimh purchased the Dolly. Jeff and Cindi Grimh came on board shortly thereafter. The Dolly Steamboat is a venue that allows people of all ages and abilities to experience the breathtaking scenery and wildlife of Canyon Lake. Dolly Steamboat is also a perfect choice if you are entertaining out of town guests as there is nothing else quite like this to be found anywhere. For more information and a schedule of cruises, visit http://www.dollysteamboat.com.

Although Tortilla Flat is a stop in the road, it offers a rich and exciting experience. The destination has been featured on The Discovery Channel, ESPN, “The List,” “Good Morning Arizona” and other shows.

If turning your Tortilla Flat adventure into a weekend, nearby hotels and resorts include Saguaro Lake Guest Ranch, Best Western Gold Canyon Inn & Suites and Saguaro Lake Guest Ranch. Choose any of these properties to create your own wild west weekend adventure! Tortilla Flat’s Superstition Restaurant & Saloon is located at 1 Main Street, Tortilla Flat, AZ 85190. For a full list of things to do and town information, visit http://www.tortillaflataz.com.


By Lynette Carrington