Wildcat Trail

MODERATE 80 reviews

Wildcat Trail is a 3.9 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Monument Valley, Arizona that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
3.9 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
380 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

off road driving

trail running

walking

views

wildlife

no shade

This hike takes visitors past some of the most famous rock buttes in Monument Valley. It is the only hike in the valley that you can access without a guide, so it's heavily traveled, but you should definitely do it if you're going to be here. The walk is on a loose, sandy surface but otherwise this is an easy trail free of any obstacles. Begin your walk from the Wildcat Trail sign in the northwest corner of the visitor center parking area. There is a $20 fee to enter the park.

hiking
14 days ago

Breath taking views. Hike was perfect. I agree with someone who said it seems like you are on different planet.
We did this hike on 4/9/2018 in the morning and was only few other people on the trail. Overall trails is marked well , except the point when starting the loop back.

17 days ago

The trail is poorly marked at the trail head. Be sure to start out to the left. After a while the marking gets good. Started around 8:30 and wasn't very busy. Met more hikers on the way back
Really enjoyable, don't miss this part of Monument Valley

hiking
23 days ago

Deep sand in places make it like hiking up sand dunes. Path is well marked and a spectacular experience.

25 days ago

This is a very easy walk around the west muffin butte and it’s simply beautiful and a mistake if you pass it by! The only strenuous part is the sandy section you travel up about 1000 yards from the start. A nice stroll to appreciate what God has given us!!!

1 month ago

If you only drive the loop you are missing the best part of the Valley

hiking
2 months ago

The only hike in monument valley that you can access without a guide so it's heavily traveled but you should definitely do it if you're going to be here. Loose sandy surface but otherwise an easy trail free of any obstacles

hiking
2 months ago

Pretty amazing! Looks like another planet. Went on super bowl Sunday and only saw one other couple. It’s pretty easy if you hike often. Well worth the $20 entrance fee.

3 months ago

Great hike. The terrain was very challenging, it’s like hiking on the sand.

trail running
5 months ago

Part of this trail was used for the 2017 Monument Valley Marathon 4-Man Relay Race. It's a great course for trail running! the mitten is stunning when you're at the base.

hiking
5 months ago

Bucket list check! Unfortunately, we did not finish this one as the kiddo was with us. We are fortunate to have nicked a good portion of it.

hiking
5 months ago

Great hike relatively easy but sandy in parts. Way better option than taking the car or a tour. Also drove out to three sisters.

hiking
5 months ago

Great trail! Better than taking the drive or a tour. This was a quiet serene walk amongst the buttes. Wildlife, great photo ops and a mustang to boot. The driving tours are a lot like a herd of cattle among dust clouds. This is a must do hike! The end is a bit strenuous but if your in moderate physical shape and hike at all it should be no problem.

hiking
6 months ago

This trail started out easy, however the last stretch was a doozy! All uphill, and since we got rained & hailed on between miles 2 and 3, dodging mud streams added to the complexity of the hike. Pack water.

6 months ago

The views are outstanding. Fun terrain to walk through. Every few steps you'll find a new photo opp. The last 30 minutes is a challenge walking uphill through loose sand, so conserve your water! Go early in the morning to avoid the heat and lots of people on the trail. Do not miss this experience.

hiking
6 months ago

An amazing hike in one of the most beautiful and unique places on Earth; highly recommended.


Amazing, as good as it gets!

hiking
6 months ago

It is about a 4 mile loop around one of the "mittens". It is relatively easy but definitely try to do this hike early morning, as the heat becomes a factor. There is beautiful scenery and not many people on the trail. I saw about 4 other people in the 2 hours I was on it. Most other people tend to pay insane rates for tour companies to drive them around in their 4 wheel drive cars. This is the only hiking trail in Monument Valley and you see majority of what you'd want. After a while though, this hike gets old as you keep seeing the same few 'monuments'. The last half mile or so is very uphill, so be prepared.

hiking
7 months ago

Easy trail. Beautiful loop. Go early or late to have the best temps and views.

walking
8 months ago

My wife and I walked this trail at 7 am, one morning in July. We went out early to avoid the heat of the day.
We met about 6 people throughout the walk. The scenery is wonderful and the trail takes the walker around one of the "mittens", seeing it from all sides. Not a difficult walk at all and reasonably well marked. The hardest part is climbing back up to the hotel at the end. Highly recommend it but probably not in the heat of the day in summer.

9 months ago

Nice easy hike. Very fine sand makes it a little challenging on the way out, but overall fairly easy and beautiful.

11 months ago

hiking
11 months ago

This was a great trail! Awesome views and very well marked. I went in the morning and had an easy time, but I could see it being hot once the sun gets higher. The trail is mostly flat, only a slight incline towards the end of the trail.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Really enjoyed the walk. Not difficult and the scenery can't be beat.

hiking
Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Incredible views! Pretty easy trail; the return is up a moderately strenuous hill which is by far the most difficult portion of the trail. If you're visiting Monument Valley, this is a "must do" in my opinion.

hiking
Thursday, February 02, 2017

You shouldn't go to Monument Valley without taking a quick trek down Wildcat Trail! It''s not the most well marked trail in places (especially the start), but it's arguably the best way to escape the crowds on the driving loop and see the rock formations in relative peace.

See more of my hiking/travel adventures on Instagram @schaefer.cara :)

hiking
Sunday, December 04, 2016

Great hike with great views; relatively easy besides a slight climb back up to parking lot

backpacking
Saturday, October 01, 2016

One of the best hikes I had ever. The imp soon facades of the buttes is an out of earth experience in this beautiful holy place

hiking
Thursday, July 07, 2016

This was a really great hike. I would consider this to be a must do activity in Monument Valley. With this hike, you'll see some great views of the great scenery in monument valley, you'll also be able to walk around the west mitten butte. Make sure to wear good shoes or boots as the trail is extremely sandy at some points. I would also recommend doing the hike on a cooler day or early in the morning, because the heat and unrelenting sun could make this hike quite unpleasant.

Sunday, May 01, 2016

This is a moderate trail with incredible scenery. West Mitten Butte is the main attraction as the trail circles around it. The climb out is a little harder, but overall its a great moderate hike. Best done on a day with moderate temperatures.

hiking
Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The Wildcat Trail is a loop which goes around the West Mitten Butte in Monument Valley. The trail is wonderfully maintained and very clearly marked all along its path. The views along the hike are all excessively gorgeous and it's impossible to miss these beautiful rock formations.

Going downhill in the soft sand at the beginning of the trail is easy-going, and the rest of the trail follows this initial trend by being very level and flat. Yet, when returning from the loop, going uphill in the soft sand can get pretty strenuous. Be prepared for that uphill battle and you'll be golden!

Overall, this hike is an absolutely amazing part of Monument Valley and should not be missed!

off road driving
Sunday, January 24, 2016

In June, 2004, we drove by Mexican Hat, an interesting rock formation that looks just like the name implies, past the entrance road (hwy 316) to Goosenecks State Park (known for its extended viewpoint 1,000 feet above the San Juan River’s series of huge river bends splitting a deep canyon), and then came upon that familiar stretch of road shown in Forrest Gump leading into Monument Valley. We were looking toward the west with the sun starting to fall, and were confused by the time - in Arizona for the Navajo Nation, the time is the same as Mountain time; Arizona does not recognize daylight saving time, but luckily got to the visitor booth in time ($5@) to take the drive. There were dark clouds approaching and we worried about the weather, but the lightning was fantastic with the sun piercing through to some areas just beyond the Mittens, Elephant Butte and John Ford’s Point (the most photographed and most popular viewpoint, one of Hollywood director John Ford's favorite filming locations, where he shot scenes from Stagecoach, The Searchers, and Cheyenne Autumn. It's still popular with producers - watch for crews working on feature films, TV shows – we didn’t see any). We first got some pictures on a couple of huge sandstone boulders that were probably placed just for that very reason – to take some great shots. As an aside, permission is required to photograph any Navajo residents and their property, and it is customary to offer to pay them. There were people actually living in among the rocks, a couple of small farms and gift shacks at each popular viewpoint; we passed by a sheep dog herding some goats and sheep, and also a group on horseback. We drove the loop among the huge monoliths (much bigger than Valley of the Gods), passing John Ford’s Point, the Three Sisters (looks like a “W”), Camel Butte, Totem Pole, Artist’s Point, the Thumb, Yei-Bi-Chei (resembles a Navajo holy man), and many other famous rocks. On our way out, as the storm clouds starting arriving with gusty winds and blowing rain, we spied some more domesticated animals, goats and a horse, roaming the valley. This is one of those bucket list areas for those seeking what America has to offer.

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