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Yavapai County, Arizona facts for kids

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Yavapai County
Yavapai County Courthouse in Prescott
Yavapai County Courthouse in Prescott
Official seal of Yavapai County
Map of Arizona highlighting Yavapai County
Location within the U.S. state of Arizona
Map of the United States highlighting Arizona
Arizona's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  Arizona
Founded November 9, 1864
Named for Yavapai people
Seat Prescott
Largest city Prescott Valley (entirely within Yavapai County)
 • Total 8,128 sq mi (21,050 km2)
 • Land 8,123 sq mi (21,040 km2)
 • Water 4.4 sq mi (11 km2)  0.05%
 • Total 236,209
 • Estimate 
 • Density 29.0611/sq mi (11.2206/km2)
Time zone UTC−7 (Mountain)
Congressional districts 1st, 4th

Yavapai County is near the center of the U.S. state of Arizona. As of the 2020 census, its population was 236,209, making it the fourth-most populous county in Arizona. The county seat is Prescott.

Yavapai County comprises the Prescott, AZ Metropolitan Statistical Area as well as the northern portions of Peoria and Wickenburg, the balance of which are in the Phoenix Metropolitan Area.


Old gold specimen from an unknown Yavapai County mine. Size: 2.0 cm × 1.8 cm × 1.7 cm (0.8 in × 0.7 in × 0.7 in).

Yavapai County was one of the four original Arizona Counties created by the 1st Arizona Territorial Legislature. The county territory was defined as being east of longitude 113° 20' and north of the Gila River. Soon thereafter, the counties of Apache, Coconino, Maricopa, and Navajo were carved from the original Yavapai County. Yavapai County's present boundaries were established in 1891.

The county is named after the Yavapai people, who were the principal inhabitants at the time the United States annexed the area.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 8,128 square miles (21,050 km2), of which 8,123 square miles (21,040 km2) is land and 4.4 square miles (11 km2) (0.05%) is water. It has about 93% of the area of the U.S. state of New Jersey. It is larger than three U.S. States; Rhode Island, Delaware & Connecticut, and the District of Columbia.

The county's topography makes a dramatic transition from the lower Sonoran Desert to the south to the heights of the Coconino Plateau to the north, and the Mogollon Rim to the east. The highest point above sea level (MSL) in Yavapai County is Mount Union at an elevation of 7,979 ft (2,432 m) and the lowest is Agua Fria River drainage, now under Lake Pleasant.

Adjacent counties

Major highways

  • I-17 (AZ).svg Interstate 17
  • I-40 (AZ).svg Interstate 40
  • US 93.svg U.S. Route 93
  • Arizona 69.svg State Route 69
  • Arizona 71.svg State Route 71
  • Arizona 89.svg State Route 89
  • Arizona 169.svg State Route 169
  • Arizona 179.svg State Route 179
  • Arizona 260.svg State Route 260
  • Arizona 279.svg State Route 279

National protected areas

West Fork of Oak Creek, reflections
West Fork of Oak Creek, in the Red Rock-Secret Mountain Wilderness

There are nineteen official wilderness areas in Yavapai County that are part of the National Wilderness Preservation System. Fourteen of these are integral parts of National Forests listed above, whereas five are managed by the Bureau of Land Management. Some of these extend into neighboring counties (as indicated below):

  • Apache Creek Wilderness (Prescott NF)
  • Arrastra Mountain Wilderness (BLM) mostly in Mohave County; also partly in La Paz County
  • Castle Creek Wilderness (Prescott NF)
  • Cedar Bench Wilderness (Prescott NF)
  • Fossil Springs Wilderness (Coconino NF) mostly in Coconino County
  • Granite Mountain Wilderness (Arizona) (Prescott NF)
  • Hassayampa River Canyon Wilderness (BLM)
  • Hells Canyon Wilderness (Arizona) (BLM) partly in Maricopa County
  • Juniper Mesa Wilderness (Prescott NF)
  • Mazatzal Wilderness (Tonto NF / Coconino NF) partly in Gila County; Maricopa County
  • Munds Mountain Wilderness (Coconino NF) mostly in Coconino County
  • Pine Mountain Wilderness (Tonto NF/Prescott NF)
  • Red Rock-Secret Mountain Wilderness (Coconino NF) partly in Coconino County
  • Sycamore Canyon Wilderness (Prescott NF/Coconino NF / Kaibab NF) mostly in Coconino County
  • Tres Alamos Wilderness (BLM)
  • Upper Burro Creek Wilderness (BLM) partly in Mohave County
  • West Clear Creek Wilderness (Coconino NF) partly in Coconino County
  • Wet Beaver Wilderness (Coconino NF) partly in Coconino County
  • Woodchute Wilderness (Prescott NF)

Land ownership and management

  • Private ownership: about 25% of Yavapai County's land (by area) is privately owned.
  • Public land: about 75% of the county's area is publicly owned, including
Yavapai-Prescott Tribe 1,413 acres (572 ha)
Yavapai-Apache Nation 685 acres (277 ha)
  • About 25% of Yavapai County is owned by the State of Arizona as state trust lands, managed by the Arizona State Land Department.

Source: Yavapai County Profile

Flora and fauna

There are numerous flora and fauna species within Yavapai County. For example, a number of plants within the genus Ephedra and Coreopsis are found in the county. Yavapai County is also the location of several groves of the near-threatened California Fan Palm, Washingtonia filifera.


Enchantment Resort near Sedona
Enchantment Resort near Sedona

Yavapai County is home to Arcosanti, a prototype arcology, developed by Paolo Soleri, and under construction since 1970. Arcosanti is open Monday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and holds tours from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the hour, every hour. Arcosanti is just north of Cordes Junction, Arizona.

Out of Africa Wildlife Park is a private zoo. The park moved to the Camp Verde area from the East Valley in 2005.

Approximately 10 miles (16 km) northwest of the town of Bagdad lies the Upper Burro Creek Wilderness Area, a 27,440-acre (11,105 ha) protected area home to at least 150 species of birds and featuring one of the Arizona desert's few undammed perennial streams.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1870 2,142
1880 5,013 134.0%
1890 8,685 73.2%
1900 13,799 58.9%
1910 15,996 15.9%
1920 24,016 50.1%
1930 28,470 18.5%
1940 26,511 −6.9%
1950 24,991 −5.7%
1960 28,912 15.7%
1970 36,733 27.1%
1980 68,145 85.5%
1990 107,714 58.1%
2000 167,517 55.5%
2010 211,033 26.0%
2020 236,209 11.9%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790–1960 1900–1990
1990–2000 2010–2018

2010 census

As of the 2010 census, there were 211,033 people, 90,903 households, and 57,597 families living in the county. The population density was 26.0 inhabitants per square mile (10.0/km2). There were 110,432 housing units at an average density of 13.6 per square mile (5.3/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 89.3% white, 1.7% American Indian, 0.8% Asian, 0.6% black or African American, 0.1% Pacific islander, 4.9% from other races, and 2.5% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 13.6% of the population. The largest ancestry groups were:

Of the 90,903 households, 22.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.3% were married couples living together, 9.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 36.6% were non-families, and 29.1% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.28 and the average family size was 2.78. The median age was 49.2 years.

The median income for a household in the county was $43,290 and the median income for a family was $53,499. Males had a median income of $40,854 versus $31,705 for females. The per capita income for the county was $25,527. About 8.8% of families and 13.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.1% of those under age 18 and 6.1% of those age 65 or over.


Superintendent's Residence (Cottonwood, Arizona)
Former Superintendent's Residence, UVX Smelter, Cottonwood. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places.



Census-designated places

Unincorporated communities

Indian reservation

County population ranking

The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Yavapai County.

county seat

Rank City/Town/etc. Population (2010 Census) Municipal type Incorporated
1 Peoria (most of population in Maricopa County) 154,065 City 1954
2 Prescott 39,843 City 1883
3 Prescott Valley 38,822 Town 1978
4 Verde Village 11,605 CDP
5 Cottonwood 11,265 City 1960
6 Camp Verde 10,873 Town 1986
7 Chino Valley 10,817 Town 1970
8 Sedona (partly in Coconino County) 10,031 City 1988
9 Wickenburg (Most of population in Maricopa County) 6,363 Town 1909
10 Village of Oak Creek (Big Park) 6,147 CDP
11 Williamson 5,438 CDP
12 Paulden 5,231 CDP
13 Lake Montezuma 4,706 CDP
14 Clarkdale 4,097 Town 1957
15 Dewey-Humboldt 3,894 Town 2004
16 Cornville 3,280 CDP
17 Black Canyon City 2,837 CDP
18 Cordes Lakes 2,633 CDP
19 Congress 1,975 CDP
20 Bagdad 1,876 CDP
21 Mayer 1,497 CDP
22 Spring Valley 1,148 CDP
23 Wilhoit 868 CDP
24 Yarnell 649 CDP
25 Seligman 445 CDP
26 Jerome 444 Town 1899
27 Peeples Valley 428 CDP
28 Ash Fork 396 CDP

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Condado de Yavapai para niños

National Hispanic Heritage Month on Kiddle
Eminent Hispanic scientists
Walter Alvarez
Joel Salinas
Jaime Escalante
Claudia Benitez-Nelson
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