Discover the History of Christopher Creek

Christopher Creek and the surrounding area has some amazing stories full of history about this beautiful and challenging area.  Enjoy stories about the Pueblo people, cowboys, adventure seekers and more!


Settling of Christopher Creek

Oh how this scene must have looked to Ol' Isadore Christopher when he first 
saw the tall pines, the green grazing grasses and, the clear water running over rocks in this fresh untouched land.  Read More


The Life of Christopher Creek Pioneers

Folks settle in Christopher Creek for many reasons - its natural beauty and cool summer climate; its charming summer colony atmosphere, its friendliness.  Read this story about early Christopher Creek Pioneers and life they carved out under the Mogollon Rim.


55 Years of Realty Executives and Beyond

As we celebrate our roots and future successes, we take a look back at the history of Realty Executives and the significant times that changed our course and helped us get to where we are today.  Founded in 1965, Realty Executives is one of the largest and most established real estate franchisors in the industry. With over 500 offices and 8,000 agents, it is the only brand that is named after its people- the Executives. 


When Columbus Settled Bear Flat

Downstream from the mouth of Christopher Creek we come to the last homestead before Tonto Creek flows through a large wilderness area on its way to the Tonto Basin. The homestead is known as Bear Flat, and its settlement brings to mind the life style of the area's pioneer families.


Kohl's Ranch History

In 1917, the Kohl family purchased a ranch that had been homesteaded in 1896. The ranch included the area that is now a neighborhood of approximately 123 cabins know as Kohl’s Tonto Creek Subdivision. In addition to raising cattle, the family had many vegetable gardens and fruit trees. Their ranch house stood where the current Kohl's Ranch Lodge is now located.


Oddities 2: Sidesaddles vetoed

Arizona’s Rim Country was no place for Eastern high-society, and if females pranced about on sidesaddles it would be the laughingstock of pioneers and ranchers. But there was one Eastern heiress, Nathalie Huntress Smith, who came to Arizona for her health and being a horsewoman brought her sidesaddle with her. However, she soon learned that sidesaddles were not only unacceptable socially they were impractical “out West.” When she married local rancher Lewis Pyle in 1952 she was soon “riding astride” like all the other local girls and ladies.


Water Stories

Rim Country Legends
by Stan Brown
The subject of water in Arizona continues to provoke discussion and speculation. This is not surprising since our state is considered part of the Upper Sonoran Desert and deserts are not know to be flush with water. However, visitors do not panic over talk of a shortage because in the Rim Country water seems to be everywhere.


What's a Haught?

Rim Tales
by Beth Counseller
The Haught family tree is as indigenous to the Rim country as the ponderosa pine.
Take a look in the Frontier Telephone Directory under "Haught" (rhymes with "taught") and you will find 29 listings.That does not include the Haught women who have married and taken their husband's names, and the many cousins whose last names may obscure the Haught branch of their family tree.


Mail Service in the Rim Country's

Territorial Years

Back Trackin' by Jayne Peace and Jinx Pyle
To send a letter today, you must have a complete address, plus zip code and a 37-cent stamp. If any part of the address is incorrect, the leter goes back to the sender. Things were quite different in the early days.


Apples and Mountain Cowboys

Back Trackin' by Jinx Pyle

Fall and the sometimes extended Indian summers of the Rim Country have long been my favorite time of year. This is the time when the wood vine and maple leaves turned red in the high-up canyons under the Rim (before the Dude Fire) and the aspen leaves twinkle yellow in the sun on top of the Mountain (Mogollon Rim). It was the time of the fall cattle roundups - the camaraderie of cowboys - the hard work during the days and the after-supper pitch games in the evenings. Best of all, it was the time of ripe apples.


Tonto National Forest: A historical perspective

From 1892 to 1907, 25 forest reserves and four national forests were proclaimed in the Southwest territory under the provisions of the General Land Law Revision Act of 1891, commonly called the Creative Act of 1891. This Act provided for setting aside of forest reserves. The Tonto Reserve was created on Oct. 3, 1905

On January 13, 1908, the Tonto Forest more than doubled its size…


Rim Country Places - Woods Canyon Lake

Woods Canyon is known today for its tranquil 55-acre lake, set among the pines; a very popular spot for camping, fishing and day-trips. It is located just north of S.R. 260 at the top of the Rim, opposite the Fulton Point lookout.


Before there was a paved road from Payson to Heber

Creating a better road to Rim Country. This vintage publication talks about before there was pavement or a divided highway.


Zane Grey - Our Area's Most Famous Resident

In his writings, Zane Grey was rather straight forward. As the reader, you normally could expect that his main character would be a man running from a negative past. Before you finished the book, the reasonably dashing man would have righted a few wrongs, stolen the heart of a girl that suffered great anguish and eventually prospered in the spectacular landscape of the West.


The Mogollon Rim - Arizona's Mighty Backbone

Arizona's mighty backbone is an epic in natural, human history.

It is a wilderness rampart of ethereal beauty, carved majestically into unmatched proportions.


History of the Beeline Highway

1868 - Construction begins on Reno Road to facilitate the transportation of military troops between Fort McDowell into Camp Reno in Tonto Basin


The Travis Walton Abduction

On November 5, 1975, while working with a logging crew near Heber, Arizona, Walton noticed a bright object in the distance. When he approached it, he says he was hit by a light and his body lifted into the air. His colleagues left the scene and Walton was missing for five days before reappearing.


The Bowman Family

Sometime after April 3, 1935, Bob Kiser rode over to the Bowman's place and holloered, "Birdie May had a baby girl and they named her Sally Ann!" This was the Bowman's introduction to me; it would be a little while before I would come to know them.


Rim Country on Film: Behind the Scenes

Lights! Camera! Action!
These exclamations, though not a routine component of Rim country lingo, have been heard amid the ponderosas and up the rocky canyons and creeks of the Mogollon Rim. As early as the 1920's when Zane Grey was filming "To The Last Man," on Tonto Creek and Oxbow Hill, Hollywood has recognized the rugged beaury this area has to offer the camera.



Some of the Rim Country char­acters were-ephemeral - that is, they were here only a short time, almost lost between the pages of local history. However their lives Intertwined with other pioneer fam­ilies while they were here, and notice needs to be made of the- con­tribution they made to the settlement of the Rim Country. This is the story of two of those "short-term" families.



The saga of Leo the MGM Lion's unexpected landing in the Rim country has become lore around these parts, nearly as much a part of  Payson's history as Zane Grey himself.  The tale, being retold in photographs and para­phernalia from Leo's ill-fated flight back in the  late 1920s, makes up about one-quarter of the  Rim Country Museum's newest exhibit, "Aviation in Payson." 



There is an artifact in the town of Payson that harks back to a famous television cherac­ter. He was a man of the frontier who befriended a grizzly bear' and thus came to be called Grizzly Adams. 

Located in beautiful Christopher Creek, Arizona - we specialize in these quaint area communities.  Enjoy an abundance of outdoor recreation, wildlife and spectacular views.  Feel free to call or email us for a confidential, no pressure conversation. Let the Christopher Creek Real Estate Team help you achieve your real estate goals today!

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CEO & Designated Broker - John "Jeff" Murtaugh - Email:  - Phone: 520-907-3606

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