Apache Trail

Driving eastwards along Main Street through Mesa, the hazy Superstition Mountains come slowly into view and it is a relief from the seemingly endless suburbia when the AZ 88 turn-off approaches. The first points of interest are Goldfield, supposedly a ghost town but now rather commercialized, and then the Lost Dutchman State Park - this has information about the varied stories and legends associated with the mountains, and in particular about the Lost Dutchman Mine which was supposedly a tremendously rich gold mine worked by a lone prospector but its location was lost upon his death. Nearby is the starting point for several trails leading into the Superstition Wilderness. A few miles further, the trail begins to bend sharply as the land becomes steeper, and passes along the shores of Canyon Lake, one of four formed by damming the Salt River, the course of which runs right through Phoenix but is dry for most of the year. Several marinas and one RV site provide some facilities - the sites tend to have a lot of mosquitoes but do offer free firewood when, and the location is next to a nice clean beach. The land around Canyon Lake is typical of the Tonto National Forest area - crumbling, distorted rock with steep cliffs and twisting ravines, without much covering vegetation but with several species of desert plants. Various lengthy foot-trails traverse the wilderness, leading to remote springs and canyons, such as Fish Creek and La Barge Canyon. Continuing east, the old-west style settlement of Tortilla Flat is reached - this has various ancient mining and agricultural relics, and an interesting curio shop decorated with mementos from the many visitors who have passed through over the years. The road fords Tortilla Creek - a crossing that may be closed during high water levels - then soon after, the paved section ends and a narrow gravel track continues for a further 28 miles above the larger Apache Lake, to which access is more limited, and eventually to the Theodore Roosevelt Dam - this was built of bricks in 1911 and remains the world's largest masonry dam at almost 300 feet tall. It is a major element of the Salt River Project which has facilitated the expansion of Phoenix and its environs. The dam seems to be in a state of continuous repair or alteration. A few miles south of the dam and along the shores of Theodore Roosevelt Lake, a short side road leads to the preserved cliff dwellings of Tonto National Monument. Further south, there are more marinas along the lakeside before the Apache Trail climbs steadily for 15 miles through more cacti-covered hills and past a few small settlements towards Globe. This is an interesting town, established in 1876 after a large globe-shaped boulder of silver was found nearby. Both copper and silver were later mined extensively, and several old buildings remain from the boom times around the turn of the century. A few miles west, huge copper ore extraction operations still continue around Miami, and US 60 passes several miles of tailings ponds and spoil heaps.

Boulder Canyon Trail

15.2 Miles RT
Boulder Canyon TrailBoulder Canyon TrailBoulder Canyon TrailThe Boulder Canyon Trail runs 7.6 miles south from the Canyon Lake Trailhead to the Dutchmans Trail in the Superstition Wilderness. This challenging trail negotiates miles of rugged canyon deep into the backcountry.

Camelback Mountain

Camelback MountainCamelback MountainCamelback MountainCamelback MountainEcho Canyon is the popular route, 4925 E. McDonald Dr. ascends 1,400 foot up the western side of the mountain in just over a mile. The journey quickly becomes a real leg-burner but delivers some good hiking experiences and a varied terrain. The Cholla trail has public parking which is limited to parallel parking in permitted areas along the west side of Invergordon Road, just south of Cholla Lane, in areas signed for parking. There are a small number of spots available for parking on the east side of Invergordon, however there are extensive areas on Invergordon on which parking is prohibited by on-street "No Parking" signs. This trail heads up a well maintained trail on Camelback's east flank, but becomes a challenging and technical ascent upon reaching the ridgeline.

Deem Hills

Deem HillsDeem HillsDeem HillsDeem HillsDeem HillsDeem Hills East-The parking lot for this side is on 39th Ave and Pinnacle Peak Rd. This side of Deem Hills feels a bit different from the West side. Where the West side has a nice steady climb up and decent down, the East side goes up and down twice and and they both feel a little steeper than the West side. Like the West side though, the trail is nice and well cut through the desert. Be aware that it can still be pretty loose in places. This side is definitely for the average hiker. For a slightly shorter (and easier) hike you can take the Basalt trail for a shortcut that takes about 1.4 miles off.

Deem Hills West features a moderate hiking experience for beginners and avid hikers. The entire trail is about 6 miles around and can be cut in half to provide an easy three-mile exercise. Hikers can also enjoy four other fairly easy trails that are all less than two miles in length.

Jacob’s Crosscut Trail

12.9 Miles RT
Jacob’s Crosscut TrailJacob’s Crosscut TrailJacob’s Crosscut TrailJacob’s Crosscut Trail runs 6.45 miles along the base of Superstition Mountain in Lost Dutchman State Park. It passes through a vast bajada highlighted by diverse vegetation and views that include the Praying Hands, 4 Peaks Wilderness, Camelback Mountain and miles of open space.

Papago Park

Papago ParkPapago ParkPapago ParkPapago ParkLocated at 625 N. Galvin Parkway. Represented by its massive sandstone buttes, Papago Park features four easy trails and unmatched views of the Tempe area. The desert trails are generally smooth, easy treks with very little elevation gains, making it great for families and interested mountain bikers. Be sure to make the hike at sunset; these buttes claim rights to the best sunset views in the Valley. The park is also home to an archery range, exercising courses, fishing lagoons, baseball facilities and a softball complex. Hunt's Tomb is a small white pyramid behind a fence at the top of a hill within Papago Park. Governor George W.P. Hunt (Arizona's 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 7th, 8th, and 10th governor) had the tomb built in 1931 to entomb his wife. He was placed there after his death in 1934. Their daughter and his wife's family are also buried there.

South Mountain Park
Hours for all trailhead areas and entrances: 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. (entrance gates close). Trails remain open until 11 p.m. At more than 16,000 acres, South Mountain Park/Preserve is one of the largest municipally operated parks in the country, according to the Trust for Public Land. It boasts 51 miles of primary trails for horseback riding, hiking and mountain biking for all ability levels. From the park's main entrance, you can drive up the Summit Road 5.5 miles to Dobbins Lookout and spectacular valleywide views or you can continue to the Gila Lookout for a view of the Gila River Valley.

Silent Sundays/San Juan Road Access : For each monthly Silent Sunday event, (generally the fourth Sunday of each month), the park’s main access roadways are closed to motor vehicles, reserving them for the entire day for non-motorized uses.

Beverly Canyon Trail-Javelina Canyon Trail-East Boundary Trail-Ridgeline Trail

3.7 Mile Loop
Javelina Canyon TrailJavelina Canyon TrailJavelina Canyon TrailThe trailhead is in the Beverly Canyon parking lot at 8800 S. 46th St., off of 46th street, just south of Baseline Road. This trailhead has the option to combined 3 designated trails: Beverly Canyon, Javelina, and East boundary trails. The parking lot is located off the cul-de-sac at the end of the road. The Beverly Canyon Trailhead is at the east end of the parking lot. The Javelina Canyon Trailhead is at the west end of the parking lot. Start the loop hike on the Javelina Canyon Trail. Although the Javelina Canyon Trail is well marked, there is a confusing section when you come to the first wash and side canyon. On the east side of this wash, the trail has been closed and you are directed into the wash. As you come out of the wash on the west side, there is a T-intersection with the trail heading south or north. There is no trail marker at this intersection and the trail seems to be equally traveled in both directions. Take the north fork and it will soon bend around to the west and into Javelina Canyon proper. The signed posts provide assurance you are along the correct trail. The rail will steadily climb up to the Ridgeline. At mile 1.53 you will reach the Ridgeline intersection. Continue along the Ridgeline until the trail plunges down into Beverly Canyon. At mile 2.44 you will reach the Beverly Canyon Trail intersection. This trail has distinctive overhead trail markers. The constant "snap, crackle, pop" of the overhead transmission line certainly provides a rapid contrast to the wilderness-in-the-city philosophy of the South Mountain Preserve. There are multiple washes with ample shaded spots to rest along the way. At mile 3.75 you return to the 46th Street parking lot completing the loop hike.

East Boundry Trail-Hike from the Beverly Canyon trailhead on Beverly Canyon trail. At the first wash crossing, take the trail northeast along the boundary of the preserve. The trail is approximately 1.5 miles, following the brown unmarked trail posts, it will get you to about midway into the East Loop trail, with a golf course on the left.

Buena Vista Trailhead

Buena VistaBuena VistaBuena VistaBuena Vista Lookout is located 6.5 miles from park entrance main gate. Follow road signs and directions up the Summit Road, to Buena Vista / Hidden Valley Lookout. This paved trailhead offers limited parking spaces and is usually full during the peak seasons. This trailhead provides direct access to the National Trail at an intermediate location. From this point, traveling east, hikers can reach Fat Man’s Pass in about 1.8 miles. Hiking west on the National Trail, it would be approximately 3.0 miles to reach Telegraph Pass.

Corona de Loma Trail

2.3 miles to Desert Classic-Moderate
Corona de Loma TrailCorona de Loma TrailCorona de Loma TrailThis trail begins on the southwestern edge of the Buena Vista Trailhead parking area near National Trail post #21. This trail descends the south side of the mountain through washes and steep switchbacks to reach the Desert Classic Trail. Access to the Corona de Loma can be reached from Desert Classic, closest to the Warpaint drive access trailhead (1.7 miles from Warpaint drive).

Geronimo Trail

2.5 Miles-Difficulty: Moderate
Geronimo TrailGeronimo TrailThis trail begins on the north edge of the Buena Vista Trailhead approximately .25 miles from the path leading to the memorial bench. This trail descends down the north side of the mountain, skirting the Heard Scout Pueblo before ending near 20th Street and Dobbins Road. This trail is very popular with mountain bikers riders for the moderate downhill descent.

Chandler Blvd and 19th Avenue Trailhead1900 W. Chandler Blvd. NEW parking lot: There is now a deposed granite parking lot along with parking along Chandler Blvd. The trailhead is at the end of Chandler Blvd. near 19th Ave. in Ahwatukee.

Bursera Trail

3 Miles-Moderate to Difficult
Bursera TrailBursera TrailBursera TrailAccess is at Chandler Blvd/19th Ave. Trailhead. Hike on the dirt path west 0.2 miles to the first trail post, head north following post markings for Bursera trail. The trail starts out easy to moderate, then starts the ascent up a southwest ridge after 0.6 mi. Once up at 1956 feet elevation, a few descents and ascents exist, until a major descent into a major valley and one last major ascent of 0.5 mi to finish 3 miles with the junction of National trail.

Ma-Ha-Tauk Trail

1.5 Miles-Moderate to Difficult
Ma-Ha-Tauk TrailMa-Ha-Tauk TrailMa-Ha-Tauk TrailThis trail is at the end of 19th Ave., south of Dobbins Road at the south end of the parking area, next to the kiosk trail map sign. The trail starts off at 1320 feet elevation on a gradual incline, then starts up at a hard ascent to the cross cut trail junction, at 1.0 mile of 1860 feet elevation. The trail continues along traversing the hill for 0.5 to end at the Max Delta trail.

Desert Foothills Parkway Trailhead
Desert Foothills trailhead, Desert Foothills Parkway (north of Chandler Boulevard) and Seventh Street. It will be on the north side of Desert Foothills Parkway, approximately 1.5 miles west from Chandler Blvd. Two trails can be accessed from here: Telegraph Pass trail and Desert Classic trail (see Desert Classic details above).

Telegraph Pass Trail

3 Miles RT-Easy to Moderate
Telegraph Pass TrailTelegraph Pass TrailLocated at Desert Foothills Parkway (north of Chandler Boulevard) and Seventh Street. The first ˝ mile of this trail is a textured concrete surface for easy walking. The trail then splits off to continue on to Telegraph Pass, or on to The Desert Classic Trail. The remaining one mile of Telegraph Pass Trail ends at the Summit Road, and offers quick access to the National Trail and the Kiwanis Trail within the park upon reaching the roadway. The Desert Classic Trail continues on for about 9 miles through the foothills on the south side of South Mountain and terminates at the south ramada area in Pima Canyon road.

Main Entrance:
10919 S. Central Ave. Drive south on Central Ave., past Baseline road and Dobbins road. Continue on Central, it curves to the right (west) and becomes the park road.

Alta Trail

4.5 Miles
Alta TrailAlta TrailThe trail begins across the road from the parking area, located at the 2.5 mile marker of San Juan Road. The Alta Trail also may be accessed from the west end of San Juan Road (6.0 mile marker), where the Alta Trail meets the ending of the National Trail. This trail offers solitude, amazing views to the west of the Estrella Mountains, and a bit of history since the Civilian Conservation Corps built the trail in 1930. The Alta trail is 4.5 miles of serious elevation gain. At more than 16,000 acres, South Mountain Park/Preserve is the largest municipal park in the country according to the Trust for Public Land. The Alta Trail is considered one of the most challenging trails within South Mountain Park, but the steep climb to the ridgeline from either end rewards the hiker with a striking view of the desert landscape below. The entrance gate is open to motor vehicles only on the first weekend of the month from 5 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and is closed indefinitely to motorized vehicles at all other times. When the road is closed, motorized vehicles may park only on the paved triangle area outside the gate and enter on foot or bicycle. Off-Road parking is not permitted.

Bajada Trail

3.5 Miles
Bajada TrailBajada TrailBajada TrailThe trail begins .50 mile up the Ranger Trail from Five Tables Trailhead. This trail departs the Ranger Trail and continues west toward San Juan Valley. The trail intersects with the Max Delta Trail just inside the San Juan gate at about .9 mile, and intersects with the Alta Trail at the parking area at the San Juan Road 2.5 mile marker. The trail then continues another 1.9 miles where it ends as it connects with the National Trail on the west end of San Juan Road. The entrance gate is open to motor vehicles only on the first weekend of the month from 5 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is closed indefinitely to motorized vehicles at all other times. When the road is closed, motorized vehicles may park only on the paved triangle area outside the gate and enter on foot or bicycle.

Holbert Trail

5 Miles RT-Difficult
Holbert TrailHolbert TrailHolbert TrailHolbert TrailJust past the main entrance gate, take the first left, follow that road down, passing the education center, located at the east end of the Activity Complex and the trailhead will be on your right, parking and restrooms on the left. This trail offers a steady climb to the upper areas of South Mountain Park. Hike the extension trail that leads to Dobbins Lookout and be rewarded with a magnificent view of the valley below. The Holbert Trail also provides a route to connect with the National Trail just east of the T.V. Towers and west of Buena Vista Lookout.

Judith Tunnell

2-.5 Mile Loops-Moderate
Judith TunnellThe Judith Tunnell Trail begins just after you enter the park. The trailhead is located just behind the education center, which has some nice picnic tables, water and plenty of shade. There are a number of disabled accessible parking spaces at the Center. This is one of the City's newest preserve-based, barrier-free trails, consisting of two, ˝-mile loops comprised of stabilized decomposed granite, providing for a smoother passage. Drinking fountains, benches, covered ramadas are available for periodic rest stops.

Kiwanis Trail

1 Mile-Moderate
Kiwanis TrailKiwanis TrailKiwanis TrailKiwanis Trailhead is just past the Ranger Station, which is .5 mile down the road from the main gate, make a left turn at the dip in the road (Central Avenue entrance), then proceed straight through the next intersection and follow the road back to a paved parking area. The Kiwanis Trail is one of the more extensively used trails inside South Mountain Park. This trail is suitable for most levels of hikers and can be used as an introduction for those wanting to get acquainted with desert mountain hiking. This trail travels through a rock-studded canyon, which is home to a variety of Sonoran Desert plants and animals, and also reveals two rock wall dams built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930’s. Although, not a very long trail, it does offer direct access to the National Trail and Telegraph Pass Trail, once you reach the roadway at the trail’s end.

Los Lomitas Loop

2 Miles-Easy to Moderate
Los Lomitas LoopLos Lomitas LoopLos Lomitas LoopLos Lomitas LoopThe Los Lomitas trail section is easily accessible from both the east and west ends. From the eastern end, the trail leaves the entrance road just west of Ponderosa Stables near “Scorpion Gulch”. A trail post is visible where it leaves the road and enters the wash. From the western end, the trail departs from the Ranger Trail at about .25 miles (trail post # 4) from Five Tables Trailhead. This trail is a very popular equestrian route that also connects with the Box Canyon, Hideout, and Crosscut Loop Trails.

Max Delta Trail

2.9 Miles-Moderate to Hard
Max Delta TrailMax Delta TrailMax Delta TrailGo south on Central Avenue past Dobbins; the road curves to the right, then park in the parking area on the north side, across from Scorpion Gulch. The trail starts at the Kiosk sign on the west side of the parking area. The trail will start out easy and flat, then ascend up and traverse the hills behind the ranger station. The trail descends down off the hills are in the flats, then meanders and undulates until meeting up with the Bajada trail at the San Juan gate area.

Ranger Trail

3.4 Miles RT-Moderate
Ranger TrailRanger TrailFrom the Central Avenue entrance, proceed 1 mile and turn left at the 1 mile marker. Make the next right into the Five Tables picnic area, then park in the paved split-railed parking area. The trailhead is located at the back of Five Tables picnic area alongside an information kiosk. The Ranger Trail provides a gradual climb through the foothills approaching the park’s roadway. This trail also provides alternative routes through connections with the Derby Loop, Bajada Trail, and Las Lomitas Loop, while traveling upward to the roadway. To reach the National Trail along the ridgeline, continue across the road and climb the steep switchbacks to reach the saddle in the mountain just east of “Goat Hill”.

Pima Canyon Access
Pima Canyon is located at 9904 S. 48th Street near Guadalupe Road. Going South from Baseline and 48th St, go south on 48th st., then 2 stop signs, then take the round-about going south, with Rustler’s Rooste on your right hand side. Continue on 48th st. passing next stop light of Guadalupe road. Take the first right, then immediate left, drive ˝ mile down Pima paved road to trailhead. Parking is available on the north side of road if this lot is full. This area provides access to multi-use trails of various length and difficulty for hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding. A one-mile dirt road leads to the trailhead for the National Trail and other trails such as the Mormon Loop, Javelina Trail, and Ridgeline Trail. The Desert Classic Trail and East and West Loop trails are accessed from the parking lot area. The Pima Canyon area offers a map kiosk and two large shaded ramadas, complete with tables and benches, water fountains, and barbecue grills for visitor convenience. Waterless restroom facilities are also available. The trailhead parking lot is open from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Desert Classic Trail

18.4 Miles RT-Moderate to Difficult
Desert Classic TrailDesert Classic TrailDesert Classic TrailDesert Classic TrailThe Desert Classic Trail is particularly popular with mountain bikers due to its variety of technical aspects such as the semi-rough and rocky terrain, ups and downs, and wash crossings. This trail may be accessed from either of the two primary trailheads located at Pima Canyon South Ramada, and at the Desert Foothills Trailhead that accesses the Telegraph Pass Trail. The trail may also be accessed from the San Gabriel Avenue and the Warpaint Drive access areas.

National Trail

15.5 Miles-Moderate to Difficult
National TrailNational TrailNational TrailNational TrailThe National Trail is the longest and most diverse trail in South Mountain Park. This trail is popular with hikers, mountain bike riders, and equestrian users. Although there are several locations from which to access the National Trail, Pima Canyon continues to be the primary access point. The National Trail nearly traverses the entire length of South Mountain Park. This trail offers spectacular views from the ridgeline, as well as the interior of the mountain, and will present various levels of difficulty for those willing to complete this challenging and rewarding trail.

Pima Wash Trail

1.6 Miles-Easy to Moderate
Pima Wash TrailPima Wash TrailPima Wash TrailJust hike from north ramada down west loop trail, then head west along the wash.

Mormon Trail

1.2 miles (to Mormon Loop Junction), 1.5 miles to National trail junction-Moderate to Difficult
Mormon TrailMormon TrailMormon TrailLocated at the base of South Mountain near 24th Street and Valley View Avenue (south of Baseline Road), offers a short but challenging hike for those wanting to connect with the National Trail or Mormon Loop. From this junction, hikers may proceed east on Mormon Loop toward Pima Canyon, or south and then west on the National Trail to access Fat Man’s Pass, Hidden Valley, and the Natural Tunnel. Mormon Trail to Hidden Valley is about 4.2 miles long. There are many trails in this area, worthy of more hiking. The Hidden Valley loop offers interesting tunnels, dry waterfalls, and a cool squeeze through Fat Man's pass. Given the close proximity with Phoenix, you should be ready to share this trail with many others, especially on nice winter weekends.

Phoenix Sonoran Preserve

Phoenix Sonoran PreservePhoenix Sonoran PreservePhoenix Sonoran PreserveThe first phase of the project is 5 miles in length. The Paseo features 100% accessibility for people of all physical abilities and includes 10 pedestrian bridges over preserved desert washes. Two shade ramadas located along the Paseo provide respite from the sun. The Paseo will also have trail connections to neighborhoods to the south and multi-purpose trails in the Sonoran Preserve to the north. Here is a list of trails in the preserve. Here is a list of most of the trail within the preserve.

Tom’s Thumb Trailhead

Tom’s Thumb TrailheadTom’s Thumb TrailheadTom’s Thumb TrailheadTom’s Thumb TrailheadFrom Scottsdale Rd or Pima Rd, turn East onto Happy Valley Rd. Drive about 2 miles past Alma School and turn right (East) onto Ranch Gate. Proceed to the end of Ranch Gate and then turn right (South) onto 128 St and you'll arrive at the trailhead in less than a mile. This trailhead gives access to Tom's Thumb, Windgate Overlook, Gardener's Wall, Sven Slab, Mesquite Canyon and the Windmill Trail. Explore the Marcus Landslide Trail here to learn all about the 2nd largest landslide in Arizona.

Tom’s Thumb Trail
This 3.7-mile trail weaves in and out of gorgeous vegetation and provides breathtaking views of Phoenix and Four Peaks. The most interesting feature of this hiking trail is the iconic Tom’s Thumb, which is a granite bump on the McDowell Mountain preserve. While the trail does pass by various other trails that offer climbing areas, hikers can opt to stay on the trail and climb Tom’s Thumb, something that most hiking trails do not offer. Be sure to check out Ogre’s Den, a natural cave featuring art and trinkets located off below and to the West of the Thumb.

Bobcat Trail
1.01 Miles-Easy
The Bobcat Trail provides an out and back hike of about 2 miles or serves as a connection to the Dixie Mountain Loop and the rest of the Sonoran Preserve trails system beyond. The trail begins at the eastern end of Sonoran Desert Drive, there is no designated parking available yet, only walk in access. The trail crosses two large washes, meanders along gently rolling hills before ending at the 2.25 mile post of the Dixie Mountain Loop.

Cactus Wren Trail
1.41 Miles-Easy to Moderate
Access to the beginning of this trail is from the Desert Vista Trailhead via Hawk’s Nest Trail, Desert Tortoise Trail and then Valle Vista Trail (a total of 1.77 miles to the beginning). This trail spurs off of the Valle Vista Trail and serves to create a larger, outer loop for the Great Horned Owl Trail.

Desert Tortoise Trail
1.1 Miles-Moderate
This trail begins .25 miles from the Desert Vista Trailhead via Hawk’s Nest Trail. The trail can be used as the southern leg of a 2.3 mile loop by heading west to the Valle Vista Trail, turning north on Valle Vista Trail then heading east on the Dixie Mountain Loop back to the end of Hawk’s Nest Trail which returns to the trailhead.

Dixie Mountain Loop
3.82 Miles-Moderate
This trail was the first new trail built, 2010, in the Sonoran Preserve. It is accessible from the Desert Vista Trailhead. Look for the Teddy Bear Cholla forest between mile posts 2.6 and 2.75.

Dixie Summit Trail
.22 Miles-Difficult
Dixie Summit Trail is a steep summit trail that provides a view from 2,203 feet that provides panoramic views of all the peaks of the Phoenix preserve system including Camelback Mountain, North Mountain, Shaw Butte and Piestewa Peak among others.

Great Horned Owl Trail
3.1 Miles-Easy to Moderate
This Loop Trail is accessible from the Desert Vista Trailhead. It crests a saddle of the Union Hills where it provides access to Union Summit Trail, connects with the eastern end of the Cactus Wren Trail and then loops back around the southern edge of the preserve and rejoins itself after 3.1 miles.

Hawk’s Nest Trail
.39 miles-Moderate
This trail connects the Desert Vista Trailhead to Desert Tortoise Trail and Dixie Mountain Loop Trail.

Union Peak Trail
.45 Mile-Moderate to Difficult
The trail is reached at the .5 mile point of the Great Horned Owl Trail. It switches back up the peak to reach the summit of Union Peak at an elevation of 2,200 feet.

Western Vista Trail
.34 Mile-Difficult
Western Vista Trail is a steep summit trail that provides a view from 2,026 feet that allows visibility to Deem Hills Recreation Area to the west across the I-17. The trail is quite steep.

Valle Verde Trail
1.2 Miles-Moderate
The trail spurs off from the Dixie Mountain Loop stretching south toward the Desert Tortoise, Cactus Wren and Great Horned Owl Trails.

Piestewa Peak

2.4 Miles RT
Piestewa PeakPiestewa PeakPiestewa PeakPiestewa Peak formerly Squaw Peak, at 2,610 feet is the second highest point in the Phoenix Mountains, after Camelback Mountain, and the third highest in the city of Phoenix, Arizona. It is located in the Phoenix Mountain Preserve. Piestewa Peak is named in honor of Army Spc. Lori Ann Piestewa, the first known Native American woman to die in combat in the U.S. military and the first female soldier to be killed in action in the 2003 Iraq War. Despite the crowds, hikers and families can still enjoy the assortment of picnic areas.

Pinnacle Peak

Pinnacle PeakPinnacle PeakPinnacle Peak is a granite summit located in Scottsdale, Arizona. The peak rises to an elevation of 3,169 feet. It is located within the 150-acre Pinnacle Peak Park, operated by the City of Scottsdale Park District. Part of the Sonoran Desert, the park is home to a variety of flora, including saguaro cacti, , creosote plants and wildlife such as bobcats, Gila monsters and western diamondback rattlesnakes. Hikers utilize a 1.75 mile trail to explore the area.

Shaw Butte Loop

4.6 Miles RT-Difficult
Shaw Butte LoopShaw Butte LoopShaw Butte LoopShaw Butte LoopShaw Butte LoopThe Shaw Butte trail is in the North Mountain District of the Phoenix Mountain Preserve. The trail forms a loop that takes it around the south and west sides of Shaw Butte where it ascends to the summit and then follows the ridge back to the parking area. The small parking area is off of West Thunderbird Road at the end of North Central Avenue. The hours for the parking lot are 5 a.m. to 7 p.m., April through September, and 6 a.m. to 7 p.m., October through March. Parking on the city streets is prohibited and vehicles will be towed. An alternative trailhead is at the North Mountain Visitor Center at 12950 N. 7th St. where there are restrooms, a gift shop, and a few interesting displays. Parking at the Visitor Center adds about 1 mile to the total round trip distance. Once you pass the towers and continue around the loop you come to an old restaurant that has been burned down for 40 years. Continuing down the switchbacks the backside of the mountain is nice and flat and easy going.

Thunderbird H-2

2.3 Miles
Thunderbird H-2Thunderbird H-2Thunderbird H-2This hike starts from the lot at 55th AVE and Pinnacle Peak. Cross the road for H-3 which is a little longer and slightly more difficult. The trail is great for hiking and normally takes 1-3 hours. This is a nice, steady, non-strenuous, climb to the summit for anyone who is somewhat active. Slightly rocky in parts but manageable. There is an American Flag planted at the top in a rock pile.

Waterfall Canyon in White Tank Mountains Park

Waterfall CanyonWaterfall CanyonThis hike is about 0.8 mile long and located near Citrus Park, Arizona. The trail is great for hiking and normally takes 1 hour or less. The short, barrier-free trail runs along Waterfall Canyon Road and is relatively flat the majority of the way. Even though this path is less than one mile and one hour to complete, be sure to go after a good rain to experience the waterfall.

Wind Cave Trail

3.2 Miles RT
Wind Cave TrailWind Cave TrailWind Cave TrailWind Cave TrailWind Cave TrailFrom the Phoenix area, take US-60 East to the Ellsworth Road Exit. Go North on Ellsworth Road. After passing McKellips Road, Ellsworth Road turns into Usery Pass Road. Follow this road about two miles to the entrance of the Usery Mountain Recreation Area. Turn right to enter the park. After you have paid your entrance fee, Follow Usery Park Road to Wind Cave Drive.This trail takes the cake for best family hike. Stretching 1.6 miles, this trek is easy enough for grandparents and toddlers alike. Take the winding trial to a cave featuring welcome shade and an ideal spot to lunch while taking in views of the north and west. The hike will most likely be busy on weekends so be sure to get there early. Looking for a more private hike? Take the trailhead to the right and hike up to the summit featuring an eight-foot high rock climb.