Wave Cave Trail is a 3 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Gold Canyon, Arizona that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from September until April. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
3.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
846 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

cave

views

wild flowers

rocky

scramble

no shade

Utah Travel Council, Council Hall, P.O. Box 147420 , Salt Lake City, UT, 84114, Phone: 801-538-1030, travel@utah.com

hiking
45 minutes ago

Fun little quick hike with some scrambling at the end near the cave. We were surprised how big the cave was. Beautiful area!

1 day ago

Great hike until the last few hundred feet, it becomes a little steep. Great views from top and very rewarding

4 days ago

one of my favorite hikes. easy to moderate then the last 500 feet is difficult.

13 days ago

At the start of the trail, you will come to a fence which appears to discourage you from entering, but you actually have to walk through it. Otherwise you'll get lost and wind up on another trail and have to back track. See attached photo of the fence. You have to walk through it were the orange posts are.

Other than that, it's not too bad of hike. I would call it moderate.

May want to bring gloves as there were some points where you need to grab rocks for balance/footing.

13 days ago

This trail is on the tougher side of moderate for those less seasoned. The ascending climb to the cave can prove to be difficult but “surfing the wave” at the top is well worth it. At the fork, make a left not a right. If you find yourself having to crawl through brush, you went the wrong way!

hiking
16 days ago

Cons: It is extremely easy to lose the trail.

Pros: The trail offers a little bit of everything including beautiful views challenging climbs and cool breezes down the canyon.

hiking
18 days ago

This was NOT a moderate hike. It's lovely at the cave, but so hard to get there. Like everyone said, easy to get lost.

hiking
19 days ago

Finally Hiked The Wave Cave!!! Loved it with GTAH AZ....Kicked my Butt, one of my top 5 favorite hikes!!! Amazing scenery riding the wave :)

hiking
25 days ago

Really fun trail. You definitely have to pay attention to where you are going, since the trail isn’t marked besides one sign in the beginning. It is definitely a harder moderate hike, challenging at the end but that’s when you know you are near the cave! The views are well worth it. Love this one!!

27 days ago

The beginning of the trail is not really marked. We got a little lost and had to look out for foot prints. Once you start hiking the incline it’s easy to follow.

hiking
1 month ago

Got to the trailhead at 6, reached the cave by around 7:40 with a couple breaks. We started from the second/further lot. Views were AMAZING at sunrise. Worth it to get there early because you are shaded almost the whole time coming up! Can be slipper coming down, steeper than expected. Cave is super cool. Trail is decently marked.

hiking
1 month ago

Not very well maintained trail. Wouldn’t take kids on this hike because of the heat.

1 month ago

I understand how gorgeous the cave and view are, but this is not a moderate hike unless I took a different trail! This is a very difficult hike on trails that are not marked and blend in easily with the desert...along with numerous areas of veer offs leaving you wondering which way to go! I had two guys show me how to use GPS on this site after I turned around in frustration. So, stupidly, I tried it again. I finally got to the Cave which is a beautiful wonder of nature, but it isn't worth almost dying over when you get lost coming down even using GPS! I was happy to have made it out alive! Please, be careful...this is not easy and not marked...you have to guess many times which way to go and tear through thorny bushes and cacti to get back on track. It is too easy to get lost! I unfortunately will not be putting myself in that situation again on Superstition. I will go hike a trail that is thoroughly marked and maintained! Sorry if this disappoints fans of the trail, but I want everyone to know what they are getting into!

hiking
1 month ago

Awesome hike! Would highly recommend it. The last little bit of hike before the wave is a bit challenging but well worth it.

1 month ago

Initially the trail had a gradual climb. after you half the distance of the hike, it's a moderate to steep climb when nearing the cave.
Remember to bring lots of water. It's an amazing hike. The view from the cave is beautiful.

hiking
2 months ago

This is a fun trail. Make sure you go through the fence. This trail is a good work out. I went on a Tuesday around 6:00 am. I saw two other people on the trail. No matter where you are the views are beautiful and amazing!

hiking
2 months ago

Love, love, love this trail. It's a must-do, essential for any passionate hiker in the Phoenix vicinity. ...or any surfers. :) Everyone needs a pic of themselves "riding the wave" at some point to use as desktop wallpaper.
The hike itself is fairly easy, though the last part up to the cave is the most challenging, hence the "moderate" rating. But it's absolutely something you can do, because YOU HAVE TO! Your reward isn't just the view, but the cool air in the cave. It's remarkably cooler. Be sure to bring a lot of water if it's warm out because there's no shade along the way.

hiking
2 months ago

Gotta love this Hike!
It starts out rather easy but about half way you do get a little bit of an incline through big rocks yet it's not crazy difficult to get up to the Cave.
On the day hiked it there was another family with about 6 kids ranging from 14 to maybe 7 years of age, so yeah, if kids can do so it, why cant you!?
Anyhow, the sights from the top are quite nice and definitely one cool cave to go see!

3 months ago

To the person who attempted to break into my car while I was on this hike - you are scum. You deserve the absolute worst and it’s people like you that the world doesn’t need. How awful are you. The fact that you couldn’t even break a window with a rock says a lot about the type of criminal you are. You deserve a spot in hell. For all of you who are planning to do this hike - please be aware there is someone out there attempting to break into your vehicle while you are out in your hike.

hiking
4 months ago

It was such a nice hike!! Not too difficult just towards the end there’s about a 3/4 a mile of just steep hiking and I’m in relatively good shape! Bring lots of water and go early it’s HOT out!!

hiking
4 months ago

wonderful hike with beautiful views! we missed the gate to get to the cave so we got a little lost. could use better signage but otherwise a great hike :) we went in february and it was still moderately hot (at least compared to the subzero weather we were used to in north dakota) we forgot water and there is nowhere to get water there fyi. trail gets steep and challenging right before you reach the cave. the cave makes for a great spot to relax and cool down before heading back. amazing views from the cave!

hiking
4 months ago

Pay for your public lands pass online. Make sure you have the proper hiking shoes! Bring plenty of water! And don’t bring your dogs on this hike mid summer. Seriously it’s ridiculous!! It’s too hot for them just because you don’t think it’s hot they think otherwise.

hiking
4 months ago

Fun hike. I've done this one twice and haven't had any problems with it

4 months ago

So I’m pretty sure I’m the only person in the world that managed to get lost on this trail. Just be sure to park, and literally go straight up and through the barbed wire fence :)

hiking
4 months ago

Fun trail with great views and the cave is awesome! Steep towards the top and a few spots to climb over some rocks - which makes it fun!

5 months ago

Great hike. A ton of fun and a great view. Harder towards the top.

hiking
5 months ago

It’s a great hike. It gets steep near the top and you really need proper hiking shoes or trail running shoes with really good grip. I saw several people fall over. I found it harder going down - loose rock etc. It took as 1.20hr going up and we are of average fitness. People had their dogs.

hiking
5 months ago

This is a great hike. Starts easy but gets really steep towards the top. I had to take several brakes close to the top. Once you get in the cave, it is all worth it. It is a lot cooler and worth the view. A fun hike!

hiking
5 months ago

Made the mistake of going when it was 100 degrees out. There’s no shade until you get to the cave. The last part of the hike is pretty steep. Had to get on all 4s to get down some of the boulders and did slip a couple times. The wave was pretty cool and we had fun taking pictures. Would only recommend going when it’s cooler outside. I didn’t find the trail difficult to follow at all.

hiking
5 months ago

We loved this hike. I took my 8 year old. I would recommend a hiking shoe as there is some loose rock and the end of the trail and it gets steep. At the end.It is worth the beautiful view and the cave was bigger than I expected.

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