Massacre Grounds Trail

MODERATE 300 reviews
#3 of 12 trails in

Massacre Grounds Trail is a 5.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Tortilla Flat, Arizona that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and trail running and is best used from January until January. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
5.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1089 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

trail running

cave

views

waterfall

wild flowers

rocky

In 1848 Mexican miners of the Peralta family were taking gold from the area when Apaches pinned them down against a black rock wall and the miners died there at a place that came to be known as the Massacre Grounds. The Dutchman Jacob Waltz allegedly came upon their goldmine but took its location to his grave.

1 month ago

Nice trail but absolutely no markers or trail information other then that at very start .

1 month ago

awesome hike! So beautiful & perfect length - was able to do this in 3 hours in the morning to avoid the heat. The only downside is the loud planes and cars on the road nearby.

Great hike! Beautiful views with good challenges.

2 months ago

Stunning. Variety of terrain. Challenging in that there's several stretches of steep, continuous incline at times, however not terribly difficult beyond that.

2 months ago

Great fun hike. Be careful of loose rocks. Wasn’t sure if I reached the top.

hiking
2 months ago

Wonderful hike. Beautiful views the whole way. Only saw a few other people on the trail.

hiking
2 months ago

It has beautiful views from the start to the end. I've enjoyed it.

3 months ago

Loved it, not a lot of people around. Will definitely do this again.

hiking
3 months ago

LOVE this trail! It's long and somewhat challenging with the ever present incline. The scenery was amazing. The trail was very dog friendly. Definitely worth going all the way to Massacre Rock. The trail does get pretty narrow in places and a little steep here and there but nothing above a moderate rating. We did lose the trail once and got started down a different trail going the wrong direction so use your map if you can. There were many places where the trail would split and meet again on the other side of a rock. Bring lots of water and sunscreen. We did not see any waterfalls but could tell where there would be waterfalls if there had been heavy rain. Everyone we met on the trail seemed very friendly. Definitely plan to go back.

hiking
3 months ago

Fun trail, easy to moderate. Good views

hiking
3 months ago

Great trail. Challenging at times. The distance is way off. 6.64 miles to the base of the falls. Even without water at the falls it is a good hike. At a couple spots it was difficult to find the direction of the trail but if you pay attention not too bad. Will be back out here again for sure!

hiking
3 months ago

Nice hike with great view. Went on a weekday and not busy. Easy side of moderate with a steady gradual incline. Decent overgrowth in some areas. Great for dog paws, just watch for cholla. No facilities at trailhead. Dirt road to trailhead was no issue.

hiking
3 months ago

Was warned by the ranger that this trail can get busy on weekends so we headed out early this morning despite the cool temps. Don't let this trail fool you. It is a workout with the steady climb. About half way you will cross a small saddle and drop into a short canyon. The trail gets narrow, brushy with a lot of loose rock. As you come to the head of the canyon the trail abruptly turns straight up the canyon side. This is the truly only steep spot on the trail but really a climb out. Once out of the canyon and on top start paying attention. The trail splits three times. Always bear right. The cairns will help. The trail to the left are only paths to view vantage points. At the third trail split there is a multi rock cairn in the split. You can go right or left. The left fork takes you up to the top of a rise which provides a magnificent view all the way back across downtown Phoenix and mtns beyond (30-40miles). The top of the rise is a sheer cliff on the back side. You will loop back to join the other fork which takes you up a very brushy draw to the head of the canyon with 3 waterfall spots. They are not running right now due to lack of water. Up and down in 2:45 with two water breaks and a snack break on top. Very worth the trip.

3 months ago

Ok hike. The views were decent, the trail was good and it is very dog friendly. Be warned, there will be a lot of horse droppings all over the trail.

hiking
3 months ago

We went a couple days after it rained but there was no waterfall. I think you need to go the next day after a rain. It was still really pretty and a fun hike. We also checked out Massacre grounds which was very close by.

hiking
3 months ago

Boyfriend and I made a special trip from Tucson for this hike. Though we saw no scorpions or rattlesnakes, we did see a bunny (and gnats)! We went just before dusk and got a lovely view of the sun setting, but don’t wait too long like we did or you’ll end up using your phone light to finish the last half mile and hearing things!!

hiking
4 months ago

Loved this hike more than I thought I would. The hike is a beautiful hike with a variety of vegetation along the way. It is definitely less travelled then the all known Peralta Trail in the Supes. The views all around were gorgeous and at one time we hit a plateau that made me feel as if we were on a Star Trek episode and where the terrain looked like it belonged on another planet.

hiking
4 months ago

Beautiful trail! Waterfall wasn’t running but worth it nonetheless. There are lots of little trails that branch off from this and might lead you astray, but careful attention to the cairns and in general should help you find your way. The dirt road was a breeze, and the trail wasn’t too busy.

hiking
4 months ago

Went today after we got some rain in the last 24 hours. Dirt road was well maintained, and while the trail was fairly easy, it was enough distance and elevation to get a decent workout. No waterfall, apparently it has to rain a lot to get the waterfall going. Would have been 5 stars with a decent waterfall!

4 months ago

Plan this hike after some rain has fallen in order to enjoy the falls.

4 months ago

Short hike. A quick hike. Up hill in, down hill out. The overlook is the best part of this hike in my opinion.

4 months ago

Beautiful trail to hike! Loved the views!

4 months ago

Great hike, beautiful views.

hiking
4 months ago

This was a blast. The waterfall was really neat to see.

hiking
4 months ago

Good trail, obviously better when we have had some rain, dirt road in is really no issue for pretty much anything but a lowered car. Enjoyed the expansive views of the NW edge of the supes. I honestly thought the best part of the hike was the cliff top just below the falls. Tons of places to sit have a bite to eat and enjoy the views. While the trail was easy enough to follow there are a couple spots closer to the falls where equally easy to get off trail having the gps track available can come in handy.

4 months ago

Great trail with awesome views!

hiking
4 months ago

After a few months of weekend only hikes, I decided to take on this longer trek. Totaled almost 7 miles and I found it on the easier side of moderate. Beautiful views as you trek closer to the falls. No water but that’s a good reason to return! Primitive road was not too long and fine for my Mazda 3. Lots of chances to get off trail and have fun wandering around! Probably why I added mileage.

hiking
4 months ago

Started this hike at 745AM with my wife and a couple of friends, found the first part of this hike to be rather enjoyable and easy, all of that changes when you hit the Wilderness fence. You will see several “caves” along the way..don’t bother exploring, nothing to be seen there folks. Good hike overall, no water at the falls, and more of a moderate than easy. The primitive road was no problem for my Nissan Altima!! Happy hiking!

4 months ago

Seeing a lot of the comments about the bumpy road, it's about .6 miles on the road and is used often enough. I take my AWD Audi A5 that is pretty low out there without a problem. Further as well. So as long as you have an AWD and know how not to hit excessive bumps and huge rocks then I wouldn't be concerned. Haha. Otherwise I take my hammock out to this trail all the time. There are a lot of amazing marked off trail routes to get to some awesome views as well too. :)

4 months ago

It’s amazing to me that no one says anything about the primitive road that takes you to the trailhead. Maybe that’s common knowledge out in the superstitions, but anyway, getting to the trailhead is a bumpy and unpaved ride that can be done in a standard sedan but best with a high clearance vehicle.

The trail is nice and I wouldn’t say it was easy, more moderate. Definitely beats other trails in the valley in looks; lots of green even in the winter.

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