Explore the most popular walking trails near Phoenix with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Not super scenic, but a good alternative to Camelback Mtn. and Paiestewa Peak. Similar distance and elevation gain without the parking hassle.

beautiful hike in am. A little bit more challenging then reported, but so worth it.

Decided to hike here to watch the sunset. Just way too crowded. As of right now, you CANNOT hike the “loop”. Northeast side of the mountain is completely closed due to maintenance/construction. Could only access southeast side(which is a steep incline for .7 miles to the summit(be aware that there are towers at the top) then had to turn around and come right back down. Short and did not get a good workout because of the amount of people. If you are a nature inspired fitness guru, I would highly suggest plenty of other mountains to get your fix.

A short and very rewarding hike. The quick climb offers some great views of the Phoenix airport, downtown and Tempe. The other side offers a nice view of the Zoo and the lake.

An extremely difficult but rewarding trail! I highly recommend Echo Canyon as the initial ascent. It requires the greatest physical exertion, so you'll want to get that out of the way first. Descending down Cholla is difficult near the top because of the technical nature of the rock formations. However, ascending back up Cholla is a bit of a reprieve compared to Echo Canyon. However, make sure to watch your footing going down Echo Canyon. I hiked the trail yesterday (5/22/2018) and a gentleman unfortunately broke his leg on this portion of the trail and had to be airlifted out. To reinforce past comments:

1. I highly recommend bringing an entire liter of water. "Heat headaches" are a real thing, and the physical exertion needed to complete multiple difficult ascents (each requiring a very extended, steep climb)
2. PACE YOURSELF! I started ascending Echo Canyon at 8:00 and arrived back there at 10:45 but probably should have slowed down a bit to allow for more time to drink water. Now that it will be at least in the high 90's for the next 5 months, starting early in the morning and stopping consistently for water breaks (especially for those who do not live here in the Valley) is absolutely essential.
3. Wear hiking shoes or boots! There are many people who complete this trail in running shoes or cross-trainers, but it is an unnecessary risk. To say there are ample opportunities to slip and fall is an enormous understatement. This trail is as rugged and difficult as they come in the Phoenix area, so make sure your footwear reflects this!

I hope this doesn't scare anyone off because the sense of accomplishment after finishing both Echo Canyon and Cholla is truly euphoric. Amazing workout and amazing views!!

hiking
2 days ago

This was the first trail I hiked in South Mountain Preserve and it is challenging. The hike has many different looks and layouts. The day I went in early March the trail was desolate surprising for a Saturday.

Initially you go through a flat area over creek beds and around plant life looking up the side of the mountain. Then once you hit the brief road surface the upward climb begins. The trail though rated hard is definitely not technical in any aspect - at least not to a 40 something dad-bod climbing in Brooks. It does get steep in spots and doesn't really relent until just after the Dobbins Lookout cut off. Plenty of opportunity to look out over the northern part of the Valley of the Sun to see what is out there. From Dobbins it's flatter and more open with a good trail to go on.

My only draw back is the trail crosses the road twice - once on somewhat of a blind curve. However, there are plenty of places this trail can get you on South Mountain. Still one of my favorite hikes in the Valley and I recommend it for running as well, if that's your thing, as it is lightly trafficked most of the time.

One of my favorites - especially the full body workout toward the top!

Lots of steps; not overly technical.

Good for a nice walk.

Good desert hike, a bit more challenging than ‘easy’ if you’re a new hiker. You’re rewarded with nice views and a good workout (for the casual hiker). We saw many trail runners and MTBs on this one. Mostly hikers though. Note that signage is minimal-bring a map or gps. More than once we had to check our route against various unmarked side trails and lightly marked converging trails. Bring water.

Great length and level of difficulty for four kids 5-11

A very busy trail, but rewarding for a newbie like me. The view was definitely worth the struggle to the top. Won't be doing it again for quite some time, but I am glad I did it.

Gorgeous views, lightly congested, tons of giant lizards..

nice scenery..alot of soft rock and loose rocks hiking up small mountains..another thats more for biking. buta nice day outing for sure..very easy a walk in the park

I was on 100 for a short time yesterday, starting on 8 and then swinging over to a parallel trail and then on to 100. I have been meaning to go back to 2 Bit Peak, which I found once from 100 and another time from Piestewa Peak Park, though I didn't find that yesterday. I just meandered for a time on 100 and then jumped on 1A and headed back to parking. 100 is essentially a long, flat trail, with plenty of connectors for more challenging hiking. It's pretty anyway, and does provide a long walk through the desert. One time I drove to Tatum Drive, parked at Tomahawk Trail, and then hiked to Piestewa Peak Park and back. A good 6 miles one way. I am determined to find 2 Bit Peak again, so will spend more time on 100.

Great views and a good, if somewhat challenging, workout for the casual/recreational hiker. Keep an eye out for loose sand/gravel where you could lose your footing. This is just one of many trails at the park. Great layout with parking and restrooms at this trailhead. I will be going back to try the other trails.

I hesitate to call this trail "easy," because my mother with knee issues would definitely struggle at certain parts of the trail. It's not difficult, however. It's much flatter than the summit trail, but is a longer distance. I think it took me about 45 minutes and this was my first time. It's very easy to get lost, but all the trails bleed back into each other eventually. You can go pretty far without seeing a 308 sign, but they pop back up eventually. One thing I did appreciate is that there is WAY less loose rock on the circumference trail than summit.

Love this quick butt kicker! The North Mountain Tower Road construction has displaced people who typically use the Tower Road off 7th St, so this Trailhead is getting pretty crowded. There are only about 20 parking spots in the lot & virtually no street parking in the neighborhood. Get there early to snag a spot or park at the Visitors Center and extend your hike a bit.

awesome trail!

walking
8 days ago

This is one of my absolute favorite spots to go in the early morning as the sun is coming up. The view of the sunrise is gorgeous, and it’s the perfect trail to walk with my dog since it isn’t heavily trafficked. You need to be alert for bikers whipping around corners from either direction, but otherwise, it’s a great spot!

This trail is good if you take the "101" loop where it splits off from "100". Otherwise it's just flat and boring with no variety. Alternatively, you can turn left where the trail head starts from the visitor center instead of right, it will travel alongside 7th st. until it loops back around to meet trail 100 that leads you back to the visitor center. More variety/incline/shade that way.

Definitely more of a feature than a hike. You can park right beside the rock and will walk less than 10 minutes to the top. That said, amazing view and a really unique feature!

Hands down my favorite trail, when it’s not busy. I was pretty frustrated today with the amount of people that were rude and not adhering to simple hiking rules. A lot of people were playing loud music.

However, it’s amazing. So beautiful. My therapy without the cost. I would pick this over almost any hike in the valley...but only at sunset. It’s the most beautiful place to watch the sunset. You have enough time to get down in the twilight.

Make sure to wear shoes that don’t hurt your toes on a decline.

My reason for loving this is there are a lot of beautiful stops to relax and also a solid amount of shade. It’s a good 10 degrees cooler at the top.

A bit to busy for us. People were listening to music on speakers and running up and down. Started the walk at 6am and it took us an hour to get to the top with stops. Lots of hummingbirds near the top. I wouldn’t say the hike is hard it’s moderate, right at the top it’s rock climbing for about two meters.

I would rate this trail as "hard" instead of moderate. There was no clear path, just open land with tons of crossing "trails", and no signage. If you do find the trail that leads you up the mountain, its quite narrow and also have to do a bit of climbing over big rocks to get there. when I got back to the bottom, there was a lot of overgrowth and I couldn't see the lot where I parked so I got a little lost. Beware! I feel like this is a trail better suited for atvs or dirt bikes.

Did Mojave today. Wonder about the spelling of the name. The sign on the street reads Mojave but the signs on the trail read Mohave. Oh well, Mojave is Mohave is Mojave, I guess. The trail might be said to proceed along two wings, one to the north and one to the south. The northbound wing is easy and nearly effortless, with just a little elevation gain, but the southbound wing is much trickier, or even downright tricky. That trail quickly narrows, until eventually it is completely blocked. To the left is a field of smaller flat rocks offering plenty of room for rattlesnakes to lay in wait, and to the right is a boulder and other larger rocks blocking the trail, also offering room for snakes. You can climb over if you are willing, but the trail past that point becomes so narrow as to require use of handholds. If you make it that far you probably won't be going back and you are greeted by a final scramble over rocks to reach the true top. Today, after I came down, there was a very attractive girl with a dog who started up the same way. I thought to ask her if she had ever been up that way before but didn't want her to get the wrong impression so just let her go. Mojave is a short hike, but challenging if one tackles the southbound wing. Fun stuff.

I definitely wouldn't rate this as "hard." I would go more along the lines of "easy" to "moderate." There is nothing wrong with the trail, it's just an average trail. The final destination being driveable kind of ruins it since it adds a lot more people at the top.

Great

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