Explore south of city - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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hiking
8 days ago

I’ve done this hike several times. If you go clockwise, the hike up is pretty darn difficult. View at the top is worth it! A few benches sprinkled around the trail make this a great hike. If you go early enough, you’ll have shade for at least 1/2 the hike. Don’t go later in the day when it’s hot...on the other side of the mountain it gets EXTREMELY hot and there is no shade...heat stroke is a good possibility! Go early, and enjoy it! One time we started at 9:00am in late August, and it was a very bad decision. Have taken large youth groups on this hike, and it’s doable for everyone!
There are lots of mountain bikers, particularly on a Saturday. Everyone is kind and shares the trail. Parking fills up very quickly at Wagon Wheel entrance, and costs $7.

Everything I wanted. We went early afternoon and it was way too hot but cooled down perfectly once the sun went behind the hills. So go either early morning or mid afternoon. It is gorgeous and fun climbing around on the top.

One of my favorite hikes of all time. I sometimes fly out to Phx from Dallas just to do a solo hike here. Bumpy gravel road to the trail head but worth it. Rewarding trail with an awesome view of Weavers Needle when you get to the top of the canyon.

Love this trail!

This trail was pretty tough but then again I just recently started hiking! The view at the top was awesome!!!!

hiking
1 month ago

Did this hike in March of 2018. Came from the south road to the trailhead. I would recommend 4X4. The view from the top is very cool with all the quartz around you. I will be doing this hike again in the spring.

hiking
1 month ago

This ended with a spectacular desert view of Weever's needle along a straightforward but rocky trail.

Once you get off the 60 and get all the way down Peralta, it becomes a long winding dirt road. This road goes on for a good 20-30 minutes depending how fast you drive. It's maintained but very washboard like with a ton of bumps and small washes (last time I lost a fog light b/c I didn't use locking washers lol). My 2WD pickup makes it fine and so can most cars.

Once on the trail it's very clear where to go. There's shade in the morning but once the sun comes up it's pretty exposed. Overall good trail, but a decent amount of rocks.

At the saddle, you can see the needle, but there's a WAY better view if you head to the right, towards the only pine tree you'll see out there. Just head to the right and you'll see a trail that heads down to it.

I recommend going early in summer, I started around 5:40am and it was very nice out, even in the sun. Definitely bring plenty of water (~3L) and sunscreen for the return as it does get hot around 9:30. For the rocks, I definitely recommend boots or hardy trail runners, something with a toe guard-- I stubbed my foot so many times on bigger rocks. Also, if you enjoy hammocking, there is a good rock anchor point next to the pine tree that makes for a breath-taking siesta spot.

Overall solid trail, very few people even on a weekend, and great views of the desert!

I’m not from the area but I was happy to find this trail here in the app and that it was so close to where I was staying. For convenience, trail maintenance, great marking, and sheer beauty I ranked this one high- even though I had a spill and smashed my phone (I suggest pocketing the thing.)
I ran it counterclockwise and found the first 2.5-3 to be perfect (even in the dark, as I started at 4:30am). There is one steep incline that I had to walk and coming down the other side was a fun challenge I didn’t dare to take at full speed. On the far southwest side of the trail you head through an awesome valley full of saguaros and other plant life- much greener than I expected for August. That piece was the highlight for me, even over the amazing desert sunrise and view of town from the lookouts at dawn.
The parking lot fills up quick. The trails technically don’t open til 6am but when I arrived before 4:30, the gate was open there were already two cars there and when I left just after 6 the lot was full and people where walking in from up to 1/4 mile out. Also, I didn’t notice any water at the trailhead and certainly none on the trail, although there are some nice benches to relax on. Carry or plant water.
Watch your footing, especially on the steep sections- very rocky. Easy to trip or slip- I would have fallen more than the one time if I had worn my street running shoes.
Plan to take your time through the valley! Probably the easiest part of the trail but it’s the most beautiful too, I did a loop and a half of this trail so I could hangout in the valley part twice.

favorite hike so far, absolutely beautiful! + parking is convenient and trail is well marked. you will have to drive a dirt road for a few miles but my compact car had no issues.

I really enjoyed Peralta - it was a decent cardio workout, had lovely views, and the parking wasn't too bad.
I recommend you wear proper hiking shoes or boots because there is loose rock, and the scramble to the saddle has a few spots that are steep. Grippy shoes are good for this trail.
Once you crest the saddle, you can see Weaver's Needle in the distance, and the Lone Pine to the right. There is a lot of space on the saddle that's flat, so you can picnic, stretch, etc. I scooted off to a more remote part of that saddle and had a 15-minute yoga practice.
I'd definitely recommend this trail because I look forward to hiking it again!

Gorgeous views. We got there fairly early making it before the real heat kicked in. I loved this area and plan to hike it’s nearby trails in the future.

Did this clockwise. Ran the first .5 mile, and was forced to walk the next mile due to the technical trail and my shoe choice. The final 3 miles or so was easy to run. Beautiful sunrise over the eastern peaks. Decent views. Great for a pre-work run

This is a good trail to hike two hours before sunset in the summer. The canyon is mostly shaded in the late evening and there are very few people out. I had the trail to myself which would never happen in the winter. The trail is easy to follow and the view if Weavers Needle from the saddle is one of the best.

Good trail with scenic view and plenty of shade

Moderate to hard, boots recommended, and at least 3 liters of water. Started at 5:45am and reached the saddle at 6:30, just after the sun crested the range to the East. Most of my ascent was in the shade, thankfully.

Views were spectacular! Lone tree is just beyond the saddle and definitely worth the extra 20ish minute hike, although the trail was a little difficult to follow at times. Take the trail over the saddle, and as it takes it’s first hard left, go straight through to the right and up instead of taking the switchback left and downward.

Total time was about 3 hours with a good half hour rest up top, at a fairly quick pace. Absolutely one of my favorite hikes in the East Valley.

I love San tan park, the trails are clean and great. this is a good little run for the afternoon or a quick morning breather. definitely a good one.

3 months ago

the fee for parking is 7$

mountain biking
3 months ago

Good climb up and views. Recent trail maintenance has cleared some of the larger loose rocks and the climbing isn’t difficult.

Parking fees have increased to $7 if you don’t have the pass.

hiking
3 months ago

This is a hard and challenging hike. I would not call it as difficult as Flat Iron.

The drive in to the turn off: There seems to be a lot of discussion. I have a Dodge Journey. Goes great with the dad bod and hiking sneakers. Coming in from the south way the roads were easy until I turned and headed north along the power lines. You I just had to slow down. I had clearance for the sand birm in the middle of the road. Really no problem. Go slow and take your time.

As for the way out. way more sand, much tighter and the wash outs were bad. There were a few times I followed the new tire tracks off the main road to get around the road. From the time you turn off the trail access road to the blacktop the "road" is a mess. Big broken wash outs. Lots of moderate to heavy sand, plants encroaching into the roadway. This is not a path for a "car". If it's about the same distance go the south route.

As for the hike I clocked it at 6.4 miles. the trail is lightly traveled for sure. It's all up hill to the point that when the path leveled off for a few feet, I walked slower. Really, it felt so good.

The upper third is a lot of rocks and broken trail however there are plenty of markers to show the path. There was a beat up American flag at the top. the western valley was an exquisite view. Make no mistake the down hill is tough too due to your up hill grind.

Not going again for sometime due to heat and distance to get there. But this is a hike if you're looking for something totally different and challenging

The difficulty for this hike was definitely not hard. Just the Peralta trail which is .1 mile shorter along the same trail is rated at moderate which is about right. Took me about 1 hour 45 mins from trail head to the lone tree (end) and probably about 1 hour 15 mins back so 3 hours total hike not including venturing around for half an hour on the saddle. Used up about 2.5 liters of water. Boots recommended, but that goes for just about all of the supes.

Great views doing this hike. Got a good view of 3 sisters driving towards the trail head and once you reach freemont there is a great view of Weaver’s Needle.

Nice hike, but kind of sucks for trail running. Too much loose rock and steep inclines. Disappointed

Intense but not difficult. Better in the Summer if you ask me. No elevation change worth noticing. Overall a great hike.

Challenging hike with fantastic views!

Great for a short hike in the morning! Most of the climb up Goldmine Mountain is in the first mile and a half or so, with a few short steep sections. Great views, very peaceful if you go at the right time.

Easy hike, definitely miss marked as “hard”. This trail is moderate at best!

I did this trail unexpectedly as I was planning on doing the three sisters. But I parked in at the wrong spot and took off up the trail I thought was correct. Before long I realized my mistake - oh well maybe I should up grade to PRO...

Anyway, this was a good solid to hard hike for me. Started off around 9:30. Should have begun earlier as it warmed up more than I expected that day. No biggie. This track is a little more rugged in places than my normal climbs on south mountain (Holbert, Mormon Loop, Geronimo, Devastator) but there was nothing as demanding as the steep parts of Echo Canyon @ Camelback.. Probably could use the up grade from Brooks runners to climbing shoes due to the rocks, but they did fine - no slipping.

Lots of people on the trail: couple scout troops, families even some dogs - but definitely more than lightly traveled on the weekends.

Overall great trail, great views from the saddle and on the way up. Will do this one again but would head off to the needle to extend the hike to 8 or nine miles or only after I get those 3 sisters in.

Great, although tough to get to and I live 10 mins away to the turn off. 20 to 40 mins in to trailhead in a 2016 Jeep. I bet there's an easier way in I have not found it yet!

Fun trail with a great view at the end

Very beautiful trail but bring lots of water. Views are amazing.

One of my favorites. this trail and goldmine are one if the same. pick your direction.

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