Marcos de Niza & Pima is a 1.8 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Phoenix, AZ and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and trail running and is accessible from October until May. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
I enjoy this trail although it is poorly marked. I ended up getting lost and taking a 6 mile hike instead of my intended 3-4 mile hike.
There is a beautiful view at several points and I got some good pictures. I took 1.5L of water and wore hiking boots. I'd recommend others do the same along with bringing good sun protection. There is little to no shade on this hike.
You want the Pima canyon parking lot located @ 48th street and Elliot. Very easy to find if you know what it is called.
Strenuous first 30 minutes but scenic on North side, newer Phoenix and short enough to complete in 90 minutes
Walk this almost daily with my dog! we love this because you can explore new trails daily.
Great way to get into the trails on south mountain. Interesting hike with a historical tagging of early explorer Marcos de Niza where he wrote his name in the rock. Once past Marcos de Niza trail you have several options, I chose to continue along the ridgeline, it is a solid intermediate hike with good elevation gain and a few good shaded rest spots under boulders.
Rocky trail like most non-biking trails on south mountain, I would recommend stiff-soled shoes.
Without a doubt, I get lost in South Mountain every time I hike it. Tried West Loop for the first time. Trails intertwine and not labeled at the most critical times so I got lost twice. The second time, I got warned off by a coyote from her den. That was the best part of the hike! Overall, pretty easy trail as far as terrain and not busy at all (6:30-8:30am).
Our third hike on South Mountain. I'm a hiking newbie and wanted to test my limit. This was a bit tough for me as I am not as sure footed as I'd like to be. The view at the top is amazing and worth the effort.
I plan to try this trail again after a bit more experience.