Jun 04 2015
If getting filthy dirty and beating yourself up sounds like a good time, head to Payson for the Mogollon Monster Mudder obstacle race on June 6. While you're there, treat yourself to a monster-size dinner at a Mexican restaurant, then unwind in the hot tub at a deluxe bed-and-breakfast along the Verde River.
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In a state with so many Mexican restaurants, it's easy to forget how delicious well-prepared Sonoran-style grub can be. El Rancho has been reminding Rim Country residents and visitors for more than 30 years. Everything is freshly made, including salsas and guacamole. The menu has all the traditional favorites, plus beer, wine and margaritas. Daily $6.99 lunch specials are easy on the wallet. You can even get breakfast. Just come hungry — portions are big.
Details: 200 S. State Route 87 928-474-3111, elranchorestaurant.net.
Is the Mogollon Monster real? Maybe, maybe not. But the Mogollon Monster Mudder race is for real, and it's a beast. It packs 30 obstacles, some natural and some man-made, into a 5K route that includes trail running — all at lung-bursting 5,000 feet of elevation, so there will be less air when you come up for it. There's a kids course for ages 6-11 plus a prize for the best Mogollon Monster costume.
Details: 9 a.m. Saturday, June 6. Payson Event Center, 1400 S. State Route 87. $70, $5 for kids. 928-474-5242, ext. 7; paysonrimcountry.com.
You don't have to be Donald Trump to book an entire B&B for yourself and your sweetie. Just check into the Verde River Rock House, which caters exclusively to one group at a time. Even if that group is just the two of you. You can feel even more like a high-roller when you choose from a slate of indulgences such as custom picnic baskets, on-site massage or a gourmet candlelight dinner for two.
Accommodations are a private suite plus a den with a flat-screen HD television, 31 movie channels, a fireplace and creekside deck complete with comfy gliders, twin hammocks and gas grill. Amenities include a hot tub, sauna and outdoor fire pit (weather permitting).
Details: East Verde Estates Lot 12, near Payson. 928-472-4304, www.verderiverrockhouse.com.
This article was originally published in The Arizona Republic.