Soldier Trail is a 5.3 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Mount Lemmon, Arizona that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from September until May. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 5.3 miles Elevation Gain: 1,938 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

bird watching

running

views

waterfall

wild flowers

rocky

snow

no shade

Beatiful canyons, challenging hike This trail follows the route of an old road and power line from the Catalina Highway to the site of a now-abandoned prison camp. The camp is gone and the power line poles cut down. The trail follows portions of this old route and provides access to an excellent example of Sonoran desert habitat. As the trail winds up the mountain, it visits a few ridge tops that provide good views back toward the city before dropping into Soldier Canyon, where there are some picturesque waterfalls when the stream is running. The boulder-strewn cascades over which those falls tumble are pleasant to spend a few moments by even when they are dry.

rocky
28 days ago

Love this steep dog-friendly hike! A great cardio workout. One of the easiest trailheads to get to on Mt. Lemmon. Bring lots of water, hiking poles, and wide brim hat to protect you from the sun.

hiking
28 days ago

I loved the trail.Those inclines are fierce. I wanted to finish but I got to about the 2 mile mark and could not really figure out where the trail continues . Do you go through the creek and then climb up the rocks. I really don’t know

hiking
no shade
1 month ago

Trail was very challenging to start and we didn’t budget enough time to complete. Will definitely be going back to complete. Started at about 7am and only saw three other hikers.

hiking
rocky
scramble
1 month ago

Desert in bloom...gorgeous!

hiking
no shade
rocky
scramble
1 month ago

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

This was a steep one! The first half mile is the hardest then it flattens out some but still an uphill climb. We went mid afternoon and saw only one other couple on this hike. Flowers were blooming. Minimal water in the creek. My 4 year old chihuahua mix dog came along and had no problems getting up the steep rocks. Warm enough for a t shirt and shorts!

hiking
1 month ago

This trail was great! Definitely has the sun at your back for almost the entire way up and is a cardio booster. But it’s awesome for hikers who love a good ole incline! If you want to see the actual falls you have to follow an offshoot before the end of the trail (see map). If you take the “choose your own adventure” route and try to get to the base of the falls, know the drop down is a little sketchy. Otherwise you can follow Soldier Trail to the end where it meets Molino trail and then take a hard left along the creek until it runs to the top of the falls which flow through a super smoothed out and narrow canyon. Super neat!

hiking
no shade
rocky
2 months ago

This is a difficult trail. The beginning is almost entirely uphill and it's quite strenous. It levels out in areas, there is running water along the way - a very nice stream to stop at. Ends at the old prison camp area. There is absolutely no shade during this hike so I would not attempt it after mid-April. Wear sunscreen, a good pair of hiking boots, and bring plenty of water, it's a tough one but well worth it!

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful day. The trail was nice and clear, I didn’t see any trash or anything which makes me happy. Because there was some rain recently, the falls and stream were flowing nicely. Such gorgeous views. I will definitely be doing this hike again!!

hiking
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

hiking
no shade
rocky
3 months ago

hiking
no shade
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

hiking
no shade
rocky
4 months ago

Great hike! It was windy so it wasn’t too hot out. But our friends car got stolen at the trailhead and another got broken into! I was told by the police this wasn’t a common occurrence up there but make sure you take all your valuables with you on the trail! The trail was super fun and the dogs had a great time!

hiking
no shade
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

A great trail to do in winter when it is cool. No warm-up, be ready to gain some elevation right from the start. One small stream crossing in the second half. Great views of some falls along the way.

hiking
4 months ago

extremely challenging start. Maintains a steep incline for a while. Couldn’t make the waterfall given ice but saw it from a distance. Ended in a small camp like area with concrete area by stream good for sitting.

hiking
5 months ago

challenging on the way up. steady incline with most views at your back. waterfalls are gorgeous. water flowing in many spots. great views on the way back. made pretty good time and would do again

hiking
no shade
rocky
5 months ago

awesome elevation gain StairMaster workout all the way to Gordon camp the water was flowing good waterfalls good pools awesome day.

hiking
5 months ago

Great trail and beautiful views. Steep and rocky but easy to follow.

hiking
5 months ago

Fantastic weather for this trail right now. Small amount of water running in the streams. Well marked and maintained trail. The first 0.1 mile has loose rocks and is pretty steep. Seen several people hiking without water. Not a good idea for Arizona. Please always bring water even if you don’t think you’ll need it.

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