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Moderate Hikes Map
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I hiked this trail with my husband back in January when I was 38 weeks pregnant (my ambitious idea, not his) and loved it! It was a rewarding challenge with incredible views the entire way. The falls were dry at that time of the year, but it was still well worth it to get to the end. Lots of people were out, but everyone we passed was very encouraging along the way.

We did this trail yesterday, starting at 6:56 a.m. I highly recommend starting early to stay out of heat and for the gorgeous sunrise you encounter on the drive out. Starting early also let us see 2 deer and 1 wild boar. The first decision is whether to go counter-clockwise (CCW) or clock-wise (CW). If you go CCW you will have a gentler ascent , but a rocky, steep decent. If you go CW you will climb steeply , but your desent will be gentler. Which ever works best for your body is what you should do. I think the moderate rating is accurate, mostly due to length, not due to tecnicality. For either direction, you will find the following helpful: long pants or zip-offs, good boots or trail shoes, poles, water, snacks, sunscreen. For the rest of this I will comment on the CCW direction as that is what we did. CCW, you have a gentle incline on ascent with a good trail, and great views. About 1/2 way through you get to the streams. Around the streams you encounter knee-high grass which often obscures the trail. I would not step blindly onto the path without using a pole to beat around checking for rattlers as they were out yesterday. We encountered one who alerted us of his discontent. Also KEEP YOUR DOG ON A LEASH so it does not get bit and just out of courtesy to others. Someone mentioned that this trail gets boring. We did not find that at all. Again about 4 miles in, the topography changes and you get more streams and a greater variety of vegetation, but that only last a little while then the awesome mountain views are back. This is also the same area where the grass has overgrown the trail so you need to be on vigilant snake alert. The cactus and ocotillo were all so pretty and lush. You will want your long pants here or you WILL end up with lots of scratches from the plants crowding the trail. The descent is steep and rocky so poles and good shoes/boots will be very helpful on the slippery scree. Going CCW, just remember to bear left. The trail is relatively easy to follow Sometimes you have to walk through a stream bed or cross a stream more than once to pick up the trail, watch for carins, but if you don't see them, just explore around close to the last known trail and you will spot it. Don't go off on a trail you aren't sure about without considering the options and using a little common sense. I'm not sure how people got so lost as some stated. We did use the All Trails app to confirm we were still on track a few times, but overall didn't think following the trail was hard. I feel the trail is a bit longer than stated, but unfortunatley forgot my watch so did not track it. My GPS said we had gone 324 miles...so apparently I forgot to reset that! LOL. My phone said 12.4 miles, but I know that isn't right. My hiking sense and the time said it felt more like 9 miles. We weren't trying to set any speed records, stopped for snacks a couple times, and took lots of pictures and we were on the trail about 5 1/2 hours.

lots of stairs but fairly quick! As someone who doesn't hike this took me about an hour and a half.

Quick hike. Got a little sketchy near the top (we went right, trail went left), but we made it. Awesome views. Nice and quiet up there.

Well maintained trail with lots of great views of Saguaro Lake, as well as Four Peaks and even Flatiron in the distance.
Nice change from the typical Phoenix desert hike, and though the trail is fairly flat, there is just enough elevation change to keep things interesting and to improve the views.
I saw a couple of wild horses at the trailhead. Beside that I barely saw any trash on the trail. Someone must have come through and cleaned up after the party pig summer crew!

I felt that this was a confusing guide as the loop indicated on this app was hard to find when we got to the trailhead. There are many different options of ways to wander around at this park and I’d go again, but I’d need to do more research outside of this guide.

Took the doggos, super easy. Nice views and you can get a shot overlooking all of Phoenix.

The first 2 miles are on hard pack dirt or paved road from the parking lot. The shuttle service was no longer running. The scenery the entire route is beautiful. I hit a dry season so the creek crossings were easy and dry. I can see more difficulty when water is flowing and would bring water shoes or prepare for soggy feet. The difficult part the trail is about a mile from the falls but it’s not super hard. I did find the trail relatively poorly marked given the 7 creek crossings. Because there are side trails by the crossings, pay attention to picking up the trail on the other side. Basically you are following the creek into the canyon so you cannot get lost but can end up searching a bit for the trail. The falls were almost nonexistent but there were pools of water and it didn’t take much to envision how spectacular it would be in the wet season.

hiking
4 days ago

The trail and the scenery are just beautiful. The way back to find is very hard because no signs anymore. It took us 2 miles more to find back. I recommend to take a good map with. All in all we made 6 miles in 3 hrs.

hiking
6 days ago

Amazing trail with gorgeous views. We were able to go off the posted trail and find the secret cave. Absolutely worth it. Truly breathtaking views.

hiking
7 days ago

Decent outing

Did the trail in October. Weather was great cold at the start but warmer near bottom. Some tricky spots and not for younger kids. The hike down was pretty easy but back out sucked the energy out of you. At the bottom the river was flowing and sound of water was relaxing

hiking
7 days ago

Well maintained trail. Leaving by 8am is great advice. My wife and I were fine with 2 L of water but it wasn't a hot day. Strangely enough, one of the creeks was bone dry on the way up but running pretty good 3 hours later when we go back to it. We ended up using the road from that point on.

Maintain three points of contact and move deliberately...

probably one of the more decent trails in the area. The falls area is worth a look if you can back in there.

The trail at some of the dry river bed crossings aren't marked so keep your eyes peeled or you might end up scrambling up or down the river bed for a while before you realize you aren't in the trail.

I have done Fossil Creek through Camp Verde but my kids and I were anxious to complete the hike through Strawberry. We could not have picked a better day for this hike on 8.25.18. We went with a group of 13, ages 8-45 and thankfully, everyone survived and had an amazing time. We were blessed with dark clouds the entire day though it never rained. The hike is definitely a workout but the views and waterfall at the end were absolutely worth it. Spent about 4 hours cliff jumping and swimming. Definitely bring food as you will want to sit and enjoy the scenery and the water. The hike out was a challenge for my 8 year old as it was very steep and it definitely got my heart rate up. If you have young kids, I would recommend the hike through Camp Verde and save this one for the older kids. Would absolutely do this hike again next summer!

Easy fun trail.

I may have been slightly not ready for this trail but did it anyways. Took the suggestion of going clockwise and happy with the choice. The big Up was kinda brutal but didn’t slow me down much. The views on this trail are incredible. The creek beds were all flowing thanks to the recent rain and fun to romp around in. I took my time and came in just under 5 hours. Only passed about 12 people going opposite direction. Came out measuring 9.4 miles as well. This was my longest hike yet and I think I managed alright. NO SHADE THO almost got me. It was only 79 degrees when I finished but I got a pretty nasty burn. Cant wait to do again when cooler out!

Good morning hike! Had the trail all to ourselves

This is a solid 4.4 mile hike (8.8mi out and back) starting with a mild 1.4mi flat / paved surface climb. The remaining 3 miles is mostly a gradual 1,000ft climb with mixed rocky, sandy, and step up & down path. Took us about 2hrs with few breaks. The trail ends at the falls which cannot be seen until the last few hundred feet of the trail.

Signage along the path is confusing and limited. It is easy to get off the trail. You will cross the Bear Creek like 3-4 times which also makes it easy to lose the trail. It is heavily trafficked so adjusting should not be difficult. Cellular signal was available throughout the trail.

The falls were dry when we arrived. The water was pretty murky. Beyond that, this is a moderate trail with beautiful scenery. Well worth the trip!

Great hike! Took my time walking clockwise, making photos along the way, with the best views especially around the mid-way point. I missed the trail that cuts across bypassing point B to get back to the trailhead which added a few more miles. A great case in point to know before you go. I had been rushing without paying attention to the sign posts thinking I needed to make it back before parking gates were locked around 5. I got back 20min after and there were still cars in the lot. My phone's GPS helped me navigate the return and I also carried a headlamp/plenty of water.

Beautiful, moderate, pet friendly trail. I recommend going at sunrise to get a stunning view of the valley and surrounding mountains.

Did this loop counterclockwise, but will do it clockwise if I do it again. Started at 8:00 and completed it in 3.5 hours, and was 95 degrees when I got back to the car. Beautiful views, only saw 4 other people out there, trail was well marked. Cairns show the way when there were wash crossings, and signs were at every trail intersection.

Head out on the trail before 8 am and you will have a nice amount of coverage from the sun one the way to 7 falls. Water felt great and even though it wasn’t running, the upper pool was a very nice place to take a dip and cool off. The hike back will offer little protection from the sun so make sure to re-apply sun screen after swimming and save a majority of your water for the hike back.

Perfect trail for beginners with a scenic view

Great hike but I clicked it at 5.6 miles took us 3 hours, everyone was nice on the trail.

Pretty good hike. Make sure you bring lots of water and use sunscreen as you will be in the sun the majority of the time. No flowing water at this time though...

Great hike with amazing views... but it's easy to go off the path.. needs more signs showing the way up/down. bear canyon trail #29

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