Tom's Thumb Trail South

HARD 50 reviews
#10 of 48 trails in

Tom's Thumb Trail South is a 10.6 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Scottsdale, Arizona that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. 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.

DISTANCE
10.6 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2591 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

no shade

hiking
2 months ago

A really beautiful and challenging hike. I took a few detours but primarily followed the AllTrails map which was well marked. My favorite part was the final climb to Tom's Thumb which was steep making it a great workout. The views vary throughout the trail keeping it really interesting. I would definitely recommend taking a few liters of water or at least doing it during the cooler months.

hiking
2 months ago

Great views on the way up to Tom's Thumb, lots of loose rocks in areas of the trail so footing could get tricky for some

hiking
3 months ago

Good for a long hike, or Grand Canyon training. Some good views, decent changes in terrain, trail width is wide. If you hike the other trail on the backside it's a lot faster and steeper with better views in my opinion.

hiking
4 months ago

Amazing. Took a solid 4 hours including about 30 minutes hanging out at the top.

hiking
4 months ago

Very fun trail but I would question the "hard" rating. This trail gains its elevation gradually, making for a very comfortable incline/decline. In hot months, I understand the rating because a person would be getting ROASTED in direct sunlight with no water sources along the way. Side note: dogs are allowed, but I would strongly recommend giving the pup booties for its paws because there are many sharp-edged rocks along the way.

hiking
6 months ago

Nice hike

mountain biking
10 months ago

Great views and a very difficult trail. Must do

hiking
11 months ago

We hiked for a total of 11 miles in four hours. We didn't follow this trail exactly, as we hooked onto Tom's Thumb Trail earlier than the map shows. As a result, we only did 11 miles rather than the 12.5 as this trail map shows. However, we were sufficiently tired and I'm glad we didn't do the extra 1.5 miles. GPS showed 2,500 feet of elevation gain. Beautiful trail and very lightly used. We only saw about five groups of people the whole way up and halfway down until we were back on Gateway, which is heavily used. We started at 5:20 AM to beat the heat but it was an unusually cool day (about 85 degrees at 9:30 AM) and were shaded by the mountains the whole way up, which made the hike very pleasant. Terrain is varied throughout-rocky, sandy, forested, and red clay. Definitely carry a lot of water, as it is a long hike. Sturdy shoes will definitely help as well, as it is quite rocky (not used often) and long. Overall, it was a great hike and exhausting!

hiking
Sunday, April 09, 2017

Took my daughter and buddies, forgot how hard this trail is and went with a liter of water and everyone in group ran out of water. Luckily it was a beautiful day and temperatures didn't climb up. Lot of loose rocks and need shoes better than running for sure. You will keep hitting false summits and finally will summit. Also carry the map and it will keep saying Toms thumb or gateway loop and you will increase more miles. Carry at least 2 ltrs of water, start early to avoid sun, carry sunscreen, hats and snacks, you will be in open for long time for sure

hiking
Wednesday, March 22, 2017

pretty decent incline. slippery gravel in parts. need hikers boots or shoes.

hiking
Sunday, March 19, 2017

Thursday, March 02, 2017

moderate

hiking
Monday, December 12, 2016

GREAT HIKE! Super challenging and fun! The trek up to Tom's Thumb is worth the view and I recommended taking a detour to the Lookout before heading back down the trail. Views from the Lookout trail are gorgeous too!

Friday, November 25, 2016

Can't beat this for hiking so nearby in Scottsdale. One of my favorites. If you want to "half" the hike, use two cars, one at Gateway trailhead and one at Toms Thumb trailhead.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Love this hike! We have done it more than a few times! I like the climb and the small valley once your up! The "Thumb" is pretty cool to, love the lookout!

hiking
Saturday, September 10, 2016

Awesome views, kinda hard on the way up but so worth it!

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

some extremely slippery gravel in parts! the trail is deceiving, you think you have reached the end a few different times, but it is one of my fav trails in the phx area.

hiking
1 day ago

recorded Tom's Thumb Trail South

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