Springerville: 17 miles NE of Greer; 56 miles E of Show Low; 82 miles SE of Holbrook; 227 miles NE of Phoenix

Together the adjacent towns of Springerville and Eagar constitute the northeastern gateway to the White Mountains. Although the towns themselves are at the foot of the mountains, the vistas from around Springerville and Eagar take in all the area's peaks. The two towns also like to play up their Wild West backgrounds -- in fact, John Wayne liked the area so much that he had a ranch along the Little Colorado River just west of Eagar. Today, large ranches still run their cattle on the windswept plains north of the twin towns.

Volcanic activity between 300,000 and 700,000 years ago left the land north of the twin towns dotted with cinder cones and gave the land its distinctive character. Containing 405 extinct volcanic vents, the area known as the Springerville Volcanic Field covers an area bigger than the state of Rhode Island and is the third-largest volcanic field of its kind in the continental United States. Only the San Francisco Field near Flagstaff and the Medicine Lake Field in California are larger. For a brochure outlining a tour of the volcanic field, contact the Springerville-Eagar Regional Chamber of Commerce.