90 miles NE of Payson; 185 miles NE of Phoenix; 50 miles S of Holbrook; 140 miles SE of Flagstaff
Pinetop-Lakeside, two towns that grew together over the years, is the busiest community in the White Mountains, and strung along Ariz. 260 as it passes through this area are dozens of motels and cabin resorts. At first glance, it's easy to dismiss the town as one long commercial strip, what with all the shopping centers and budget motels, but Pinetop-Lakeside has spent many years entertaining families during the summer months, and it has plenty of diversions to keep visitors busy. You just have to look a little harder than you might in nearby Greer.
With Apache and Sitgreaves National Forests on one side and the unspoiled lands of the White Mountain Apaches' Fort Apache Indian Reservation on the other, Pinetop-Lakeside is well situated for anyone who enjoys the outdoors. Nearby are several lakes with good fishing; nearly 200 miles of hiking, mountain-biking, and cross-country ski trails; horseback riding; and downhill skiing. Although summer is the busy season, Pinetop-Lakeside becomes something of a ski resort in winter. Sunrise Park ski area is only 30 miles away, and on weekends the town is packed with skiers.
Pinetop-Lakeside is definitely the family destination of the White Mountains, so if you're looking for a romantic weekend or solitude, continue farther into the White Mountains to Greer.