The Finest Trails in Phoenix for All Forms of Hikers

“], “filter”: “nextExceptions”: “img, blockquote, div”, “nextContainsExceptions”: “img, blockquote” }”>

Obtain $50 off an eligible $100 buy on the Exterior Store, the place you will discover gear for all of your adventures open air.
>”,”identify”:”in-content-cta”,”sort”:”hyperlink”}}”>Join Exterior+ at present.

Don’t let the temps (or rattlesnakes or scorpions) scare you: Phoenix’s native hikes are as scorching as its summer time heatwaves. The world, an city island surrounded by wilderness, epic peaks, and the great thing about the Sonoran Desert, is likely one of the finest cities for hikers within the nation. 

The ancestral lands of the Akimel O’odham tribe and the Hohokam folks provide a wealthy historical past anda  big selection of routes for all backcountry adventurer, from rugged backpackers searching for a multi-day trek to dayhikers wanting to flee the town for a fast morning or afternoon journey. Select from yard trails within the Phoenix Mountains Protect, well-known classics like Camelback Mountain, or lesser-known treks by the Superstition Mountains. 

Finest Dayhikes Close to Phoenix

We promise you this: You gained’t get bored path hopping in Phoenix’s close by mountains and wilderness areas.

Finest Dayhikes Close to the Metropolis

Camelback Mountain through Echo Canyon Path

The Finest Trails in Phoenix for All Forms of Hikers
Dawn at Camelback Mountain (Photograph: Jeremy Janus/iStock through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 19 minutes
  • Elevation Achieve: 1,241 toes

Summit the town’s tallest mountain, all earlier than lunch. This well-liked route up Camelback Mountain is a must-do irrespective of in the event you’re a neighborhood or vacationer. You’ll get a glimpse of panoramic views of downtown Phoenix and the encircling suburbs the whole method. However the actual stunner comes after you end a steep scramble within the final half-mile to the highest: 360-degree views of Piestewa Peak to the north, South Mountains Park to the south, and downtown Phoenix immediately under. Additionally into mountaineering? This path is ideal for that too, with well-liked routes together with Monk’s Chin on Praying Monk spire and Up Shift, a V3 on Chipmunk Boulder.

Piestewa Peak

High point of view across from Piestewa Peak Dreamy Draw to Camelback Mountain
Excessive perspective throughout from Piestewa Peak Dreamy Draw to Camelback Mountain (Photograph: BCFC/iStock through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 19 minutes
  • Elevation Achieve: 1,122 toes

The steep hike to Piestewa Peak is well worth the battle to the highest. Native saguaro cactus–of all sizes and styles–sprinkle the panorama, and views alongside this path are significantly beautiful at dawn and sundown, when the deep orange, pink, and pinkish rays accent the dusty desert mountains. On the summit, take a break on the craggy peak overlooking the town and surrounding mountain ranges earlier than retracing your steps. Heads up: Anticipate crowds on this path (and for good cause with these views).

Dobbins Lookout through Holbert Path

Dobbin's Lookout
Dobbin’s Lookout (Photograph: Gregory Clifford/iStock through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 35 minutes
  • Elevation Achieve: 1,120 toes

The views on the prime of this path? Epic. Dobbin’s Lookout sits on the highest level in South Mountain Park – one of many largest managed metropolis parks within the nation, spanning three mountain ranges – at 2,330 toes. The path’s elevation soars throughout the final mile of the hike, so be ready for a tricky end earlier than reaching the lookout tower on the prime. Hikers also needs to maintain their eyes peeled for native chuckawalla lizards. The brown or darkish grey reptiles can develop as much as 18” lengthy and are sometimes discovered basking within the solar on rocks alongside the path. However don’t fear, regardless that they could look scary, they aren’t venomous or dangerous to people.

South Mountain Nationwide Path

South Mountain hiker
South Mountain hiker (Photograph: Gregory Clifford/iStock through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: half-hour
  • Elevation Achieve: 3,026 toes
  • Path Kind: Level to level

If the Holbert Path is a hike into the sky, it is a trek throughout it. The South Mountain Nationwide Path stretches by the whole 16,000-acre park and intersects with many spur trails alongside the way in which. Take these spurs to discover deserted gold mines, historical petroglyphs, and spectacular rock formations, or simply head straight down the ridgeline catching views of Maricopa Peak, the Estrella Mountains, and Ma Ha Tuak Vary throughout the Phoenix foreground. In case you’re searching for a protracted path simply exterior of metropolis limits, that is your decide.

Finest Dayhikes Exterior of the Metropolis

Granite Mountain Path

hiking in the granite boulders
climbing within the granite boulders (Photograph: wingedwolf/iStock through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 48 minutes
  • Elevation Achieve: 1,755 toes

This boulder-filled magnificence makes for a terrific Grand Canyon coaching climb. Anticipate to see wildflowers, desert scrub, and juniper timber protecting the panorama right here. To get to the very prime, you’ll should scramble up rocks with reasonable publicity. Your reward on the prime: unobstructed views of Prescott Peak, Granite Basin lake, and numerous miles of ponderosa-pine noticed desert land. Retrace your steps again down, fastidiously navigating again down the rocky and sandy terrain. Need to loop across the base of the mountain as an alternative of summiting? Take a look at the Granite Mountain Loop Path

Satan’s Bridge Path

The Devil's Bridge
The Satan’s Bridge (Photograph: Sam Antonio Images/Second through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 2 hours 55 minutes
  • Path Kind: Out and again
  • Issue: Reasonable

Satan’s Bridge – the most important pure sandstone arch within the Coconino Nationwide Forest–is completely well worth the journey. Rusty-red dust trails give technique to spectacular views of colorfully-layered mountain faces blanketed on the base with pines. The path’s namesake, a vibrant red-orange archway, towers 54 toes tall, 5 toes large, and 45 toes lengthy. Courageous hikers can stroll out to the center of the arch for a spectacular photo-op.

Finest Dayhikes within the Superstition Mountains

There’s a cause why the Superstition Mountains are the best-known mountains in Arizona. Peep these trails, situated within the Tonto Nationwide Forest, for proof.

Peralta Canyon Path

Peralta Canyon
Peralta Canyon (Photograph: Matthew Perkins/iStock through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Elevation Achieve: 1,388 toes

Peralta Canyon Path affords among the finest views of Weaver’s Needle, a surprising 1,000-foot rock spire taking pictures out of the desert ground. However that’s not the one magnificence you’ll see on this hike. Your complete 4.6 miles are filled with creative rock formations and jagged terrain carved by Mom Nature herself. This path is totally uncovered to the solar, so pack a lot of sunscreen and water for the trek.

Backyard Valley Loop

flowering cactus, Superstition Mountains
flowering cactus, Superstition Mountains (Photograph: Bentleyphotos/iStock through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 56 minutes
  • Path Kind: Loop
  • Issue: Reasonable

In search of the very best of Arizona climbing with out the bodily exhaustion? Effectively, right here’s your path. The Backyard Valley Loop removes the bodily problem of elevation acquire with out sacrificing the views. Many locals say this hike encompasses the very best of the Superstition Mountains: slim canyons, colourful rock formations, mountain vistas, and desert wildflowers in peak bloom come March. Have children? This path can also be appropriate for adventurous youngsters who can deal with the gap.

Battleship Mountain

Superstition Mountains
Superstition Mountains (Photograph: Eric Mischke / EyeEm through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Elevation Achieve: 1,306 toes
  • Issue: Very troublesome

Often called “Arizona’s Angels Touchdown” for its uncovered ridgeline summit that has hikers flirting with hazard, Battleship Mountain isn’t for the faint of coronary heart. Observe the cairn-marked path by saguaro cacti-spotted terrain for a easy 4 miles to start out your hike. The additional you journey, the extra technical the path will get. A daredevil climb up the backbone of Battleship Mountain leads you to the summit with views of Geronimo Head, Malapais Mountain, and the Superstition wilderness. Remember: this demanding day hike requires above-average rock scrambling expertise, and takes most hikers round 7 hours to finish.

Finest Dayhikes for Households Close to Phoenix

Make your subsequent journey a whole household affair. Phoenix is surrounded with nature price exploring irrespective of in the event you’re a younger ‘un or only a child at coronary heart.

Desert Botanical Backyard

Desert Botanical Gardens
Desert Botanical Gardens (Photograph: iShootPhotosLLC/E+ through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 18 minutes
  • Path Kind: Varied loops

Discover a dwelling museum that protects and celebrates Arizona’s huge and exquisite native flora. 5 totally different interpretive loops, all of that are ADA-accessible, exhibit greater than 50,000 vegetation and over 4,000 totally different species. On the Vegetation & Folks Loop (0.3 miles), study how the native peoples – together with the Tohono O’odham, Western Apache, and Hohokam – use the area’s vegetation for meals, constructing, and medication. Or stroll by an explosion of desert wildflowers and blooming cactus (which peak in mid-March to late April) on the Desert Wildflower Loop Path (0.3 miles).

McDowell Mountain North Path

Saguaro at Mcdowell Mountain Regional Parkv
Saguaro at Mcdowell Mountain Regional Park (Photograph: JeffGoulden/iStock through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 18 minutes

Cactus hunt and wildlife watch with the household at McDowell Mountain Regional Park. This flat, 3-mile loop passes among the largest multi-armed saguaro cacti within the area, a few of that are over 100 years outdated. Choose up a guided path map on the registration desk to study native species, native vegetation, and geographic details at 34 interpretive stops alongside the path. However don’t neglect to search for: you gained’t wish to miss out on the spectacular views of the Mazatzal Mountains and the 4 Peaks Wilderness within the distance.

Tonto Nationwide Monument

cliff dwellings at Tonto National Monument
cliff dwellings at Tonto Nationwide Monument (Photograph: Federica Grassi/Second through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 1 hour 50 minutes
  • Elevation Achieve: As much as 698 ft

For hundreds of years indigenous peoples known as the Tonto Basin dwelling. The Tonto Nationwide Monument protects two Salado-style cliff dwellings – the Higher and Decrease Cliff Dwellings – for his or her architectural marvel and historic significance. The “Santos,” a prehistoric tradition who inhabited the realm between A.D. 1250 and A.D. 1450 constructed the constructions utilizing a mixture of stone, adobe, and wooden. The paved, interpretive Decrease Cliff Dwelling Path (0.7 miles) and a extra rugged Higher Cliff Dwelling Path (2.4 miles) lead hikers to the remaining constructions. 

Finest Backpacking Journeys Close to Phoenix

Take a long-haul hike (or two) throughout Phoenix’s iconic Sonoran desert panorama. 

Reavis Ranch Path

Hiking in the Sonoran Desert
Mountaineering within the Sonoran Desert (Photograph: Eric Mischke / EyeEm through Getty Photographs)
  • Distance from Phoenix: 2 hours 40 minutes
  • Elevation Achieve: 2,907 toes
  • Path Kind: Level to Level

Cross huge and uncovered desert crammed with Sonoran vegetation like yucca, mesquite, prickly pear, saguaro, and barrel cacti on this near-Phoenix backpacking traditional. Alongside the way in which, go by Reavis Ranch, recognized for its historic orchard planted again in 1847 by Elisha Reavis, recognized to some as “The Hermit of Superstition Mountains.” That’s proper: first-come, first-serve apple selecting each fall. 

Highline Nationwide Recreation Path

  • Distance from Phoenix: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Elevation Achieve: 10,516 toes
  • Path Kind: Level to level
  • Issue: Very troublesome

On this lesser-known cousin to the Arizona Path, you’ll by no means finish your journey disillusioned…simply drained. Achieve some severe elevation–over 8,500 toes–as you ascend by ponderosa pines, alongside alligator juniper and ferns, and amongst a plethora of wildflowers. This biodiverse path is so lush, chances are you’ll even neglect you’re within the desert area of the U.S. Plan for a minimum of 3-5 days to finish this rigorous hike, and notice that campsites are plentiful at most water sources together with Tonto Creek, Bonita Creek, Bray Creek, and Webber Creek.

Phoenix Native Suggestions

Climate and Packing

Deliver sunscreen. Numerous sunscreen. Temperatures peak at round 105-degrees in summer time and drop to the excessive 60s within the winter. Even with the daytime warmth, you’ll wish to pack loads of layers because the desert dips right down to barely under freezing on its coldest nights. And irrespective of how lengthy your hike, deliver loads of water (it’s really useful to drink 1 liter of water for each 2 hours of climbing).

Gear Retailers

Fill up on gear at Simply Roughin’ It Journey Firm, a neighborhood store in Scottsdale run by former Grand Canyon, Havasupai, and Superstition Wilderness guides. You can too discover an REI close to South Mountain Park and Protect simply south of the town.

Meals and Drink Stops

The easiest way to chill down from the Arizona warmth? A chilly drink. Favourite native watering holes embrace Saddle Mountain Brewing (nice meals), Arizona Wilderness DTPHX (nice beer backyard), and The Little Woody (nice dive). For meals, a must-visit is the Fry Bread Home, initially opened within the early 90s by a member of the Tohono O’odham Nation, and at present, run by an all-Native employees. Their fry bread – is served each savory and candy, and you actually can’t go unsuitable with something on the menu right here.