Spur Cross Trail

MODERATE 213 reviews

Spur Cross Trail is a 5.2 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Cave Creek, Arizona that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

5.2 miles
465 feet

dogs on leash

kid friendly



horseback riding

mountain biking

trail running






wild flowers



washed out

This Spur Cross loop is the most popular and easiest hike of the Spur Cross Conservation Area. The views are spectacular and the Solar Oasis is an interesting place to discover. This hike is ideal as a quick and easy loop, crossing cave creek (which is often running) several times. The desert scenery is amazing, very lush with giant saguaros. The Solar Oasis is an unexpected conservation area with an Ironwood replanting area opposite.

15 days ago

My mom (58) and I (39) do this hike on a regular basis because it is a great mixture of challenge and amazing views. Be sure to have some cash ready when getting to the park as there is a entrance fee. Pick up the park map and decide which of the trails you are up for. Right now there is no water in the creek but we have seen it flow a couple of times in the beginning of the year. Make sure to have enough water as there are no stations anywhere on the trail but they do have multiple benches where you can sit down and rest if needed. The trail is not heavily trafficked and you can hear and see wildlife all around you. Watch for rattlesnakes! I highly recommend good hiking shoes as the terrain is very rocky and slippery at times. This is a great hike for anyone that is in good physical shape.

1 month ago

This trail had a lot of variance - desert, open vistas, creek crossing, and woodland. Because of that it's one of my fav's. It's special to walk along that creek - just lovely.

4 months ago

I’ve been hiking this trail a few times a week with a friend and this is my favorite trail so far and I have hiked the trails all over the valley. So beautiful and options for more difficult trails to easier. We see the same family of deer every time we go too. Amazing!

4 months ago

The water wasn’t running but there were some scenic moments. Overall, not bad.

5 months ago

Beautiful views

5 months ago

Great easy hike with my gf. Little foot traffic. Very cool and warm today

6 months ago

Really nice views. Some great cactus out there. Nice elevation here and there. This was my first desert hike and I was impressed with the scenery. It was a lot more than I expected. My only dissatisfaction was that I didn’t have a lot more time

8 months ago

Was a beautiful fun hike

8 months ago

Easy hike, little terrain change, great views and nice people

8 months ago

Don’t forget your $3 and it goes to a great cause! Amazing views! Easy hike! So many saguaros - would definitely walk this again

8 months ago

Great hike. Clocked it at about 6 miles and took 1:53. Terrain is rocky in some places. Elevation changes are not too steep.

Porta potties at the trail head. $3/pp to hike the spur creek loop. You can do dragonfly by parking further out and not pay the conservancy fee.

8 months ago

Took this trail to the dragonfly trail - just beautiful and a lot of different terrains to walk through.

9 months ago

The trail is easy and filled with snow birds in the winter months. Would not recommend hiking here. It is a bit of a parade

9 months ago

We did about a 2 1/2 mile hike that included spur Cross and then we took Metate Back to the parking area. Very nice hike

10 months ago

Great hike.

10 months ago

This hike was stunning. It is a good medium hike and not super challenging. There was plenty of parking which was excellent so we did not have to wake up at the crack of dawn. We paid $3 to staff who gave us a map and suggestions on the trail. This trail is actually a combination of a few different trails. Everything is really well maintained and well marked. There are were not many people out on the trail, we probably passed less than 10 people the entire time. The views are gorgeous and lots of beautiful saguaros. We finished the 5.5 miles in about 2 hours and 15 minutes with a quick sandwich break halfway through. I'm looking forward to bringing some out of town guest to this area to have them experience the beauty of the desert.

10 months ago

Completed back in August nice that it was 5-6 degrees cooler than Mcdowell Mtn Ranch. As others have stated it is not an actual named loop, but a combo of 3 different trails. Really cool hike enjoyed the metate portion through the tree groves and was then the lower dragonfly providing some shade. Granted it was August but only saw one other couple on the trail, if looking for something similar difficulty to Gateway loop without the crowd this is it.

11 months ago

I did this trail in Feb, and it has been hands down one of my favorite hikes ever.

There were a ton of water crossings.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Very cool track - not too difficult but will get you working at times. Scenery is great.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Went to Spur Cross today. First time ever! Arrived at 6 am, so still reasonably cool. You park outside the gate and pay $3 inside. Free maps available, too. I had in mind to do Elephant Mountain, but I met a guard who pointed me toward Spur Cross since it was my first time there. Lo and behold, I started out on Spur Cross, but then came to Tortuga, which I knew connected to Elephant Mountain, so I turned off onto Tortuga and continued until I saw the sign marked Primitive Route. Not maintained. Use at your own risk, and knew I was getting to Elephant Mountain. I found the Elephant Mountain trail, which is a narrow footpath, barely a step wide, and headed down that trail. I didn't continue too far down the path. I was in site of the mountain, but then turned around and headed back. I will do it later. In fear of rattlesnakes, I was wearing jeans and had my trekking pole, but I didn't see or hear even one! Fun stuff. I will be back again.

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Really pretty hike with great landscape. Gorgeous when wildflowers are blooming and nice to see running water. We did have to share trail with horseback tour. Also beware of rattlesnakes in this area.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Beautiful desert hike, with access to the many trails in Tonto national Forest.

Saturday, April 08, 2017

Beautiful hike!

Monday, April 03, 2017

Absolutely loved this hike! It was partly cloudy and the weather was perfect for hiking. So many great photo opportunities throughout the hike as well. We did come across a rattlesnake about a 1/4 of the way into the hike. It made us all the more aware of our surroundings. Overall I'd love to do it again! Hope to be back soon.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Nice hike and so many flowers today!

Friday, March 10, 2017

when I reached the Spur Cross Ranch Conservation I was told that there was not a 5.4 mile trail called Spur Cross Trail. You actually have to combine two trails together to get the 5.4 mile hike, Dragon Fly trail and Metate trail.
That was disappointing because I already hiked those trails and I was expecting Spur Cross Trail to be something different and new.
The maps could use some work.
Otherwise the Dragon Fly trail and Metate were awesome!

Monday, February 27, 2017

Great hike.. a lot of incline but the views are with it!

Saturday, February 04, 2017

My favorite trail in the Phoenix area

Monday, January 16, 2017


Tuesday, January 03, 2017

One of my all-time favorite easy-going hikes. I remember I first hiked this when I was about nine. I grew up around the area when I was very very young so it brought back a lot of memories for my siblings and I. Spur Cross is kind of the hub of where I draw my outdoor & adventurous side of me that's where it al started. It was great to hike it for the first time in four years since I've been gone doing military things. It's a hike where you find yourself secluded in a desert oasis and just fall in love with the desert and the adventurous side of you let your mind wander for hours as you hike you got to be careful though because there's a lot of off trails that you can fine and lead you to different places where you have no idea we are going and it's easy to get lost you don't pay attention to the signs. I hope you enjoy the trail as much as I do happy hiking and biking!

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