State Route 473 to Hawley Lake in White Mountains closing Oct. 16

Hawley Lake to be drained to make improvements to the lake’s dam

PHOENIX — State Route 473, a 10-mile-long highway that provides direct access to the Hawley Lake recreational area in the White Mountains region, will close for the winter beginning on Thursday, Oct. 16, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.

The highway will close at the request of the White Mountain Apache Tribe, approximately one month earlier than its annual winter shutdown due to the significant amount of snowfall the region typically receives. Tribal authorities have asked ADOT to close the road while they drain Hawley Lake to make improvements to the lake’s dam. 

With the lowering water level in the lake and the construction going on at the dam, there were safety concerns for anyone wanting to use the recreational area.

SR 473 will be reopened in the spring, along with other local highways that are closed annually during the winter. 

To stay up-to-date with the latest highway conditions around the state, visit the ADOT Traveler Information Center at or call 5-1-1.