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Golden Eagle Loop - Fountain Hills, AZ

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Guide 11 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Phoenix > Phoenix NE
3.7 of 5 by 3
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Round Trip 10.3 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,902 feet
Elevation Gain 1,000 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 4.25 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 15.3
Backpack Possible - Not Popular
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22  2019-02-22 Hiking_Fool
3  2015-11-21 hikerdw
21  2014-01-17 FLYING_FLIVER
34  2012-01-16 FLYING_FLIVER
15  2009-11-29 DarthStiller
Author MJNelson
author avatar Guides 1
Routes 2
Photos 0
Trips 1 map ( 14 miles )
Age 29 Male Gender
Location Fountain Hills
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Feb, Nov, Mar, Jan → 7 AM
Seasons   Autumn to Spring
Sun  6:14am - 6:25pm
Official Route
2 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Geology Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
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A lower volume Mcdowell's loop
by MJNelson

If you are looking for another option to the overcrowded 9+ mile Bell/Windgate loop in the McDowells without the company of over-perfumed and underdressed trophy wifes and their disattached, self-absorbed and aloof mountain biker husbands, this may be the better option for you. Get to Palisades Blvd in Fountain Hills from either Saguaro on the BeeLine or Shea from the 101. Take Golden Eagle Blvd at FH HS all the way to the end. Just before you hit the guardshack at a well gated community, find your secure parking spot at a large paved lot on the left. Nice restrooms are available at the complex. Make your way across the street and follow the "feather" icons maked on the sidewalk as you stroll .6 miles through the neigborhood to the Dixie Mine trailhead maintained by Maricopa County's McDowell Mountain Park. A lockbox at the park line prompt's for a $2.00 enterance fee. Follow Dixie Mine Trail (1.9 miles) as it intersects with Thompson Peak Jeep trail and continues to the right up past the mine a short distance. A small sign on the left indicates the trail seperating again from the maintenance road. Continue on Dixie Mine Rd as it works its way up, east and into the vast flat plateau of McDowell Mountain Park. Eventually you will come to a sign indicating you have reached the junction with Coachwip trail. Take CW to the left and continue for .8 miles to the intersection with the Windmill Trail. Signage and a park bench awaits you at the intersection. Take Windmill to the left again and into Scottsdale's Sonoran Reserve and continue until you reach the intersection with Windgate and Bell Pass Trails while admiring the massive bouldered area that houses the Tom's Thumb complex high above on your right. Make the left again into Bell Pass Trailhead. Head uphill for a short while until you come to the well marked intersection with the Prospector trail on your left. Take the left onto Prospector until you rejoin Thompson Peak Jeep Road again. Make the left onto the jeep trail for a short distance until you come back to Dixie Mine Rd again.(Thus completeing your loop) Take Dixie Mine right, back the way you came into Fountain Hills and complete the hike.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

Gate Policy: If a gate is closed upon arrival, leave it closed after you go through. If it is open, leave it open. Leaving a closed gate open may put cattle in danger. Closing an open gate may cut them off from water. Please be respectful, leave gates as found.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2010-10-17 MJNelson
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Most recent Triplog Reviews
    Golden Eagle Loop - Fountain Hills
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Nice stroll in the desert. Hiking in the MMRP always reminds me of when my brothers and I would hike around the then desert near McKellips and Power Road where we grew up as kids. Good times.

    To my surprise the trails were very empty. I counted only 3 bikers and 4 hikers that we crossed paths with.

    Very nice trailhead.
    Golden Eagle Loop - Fountain Hills
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Judy and I have done the Dixie Mine Trail in the past but were looking for some additional mileage on a trail we've not done before. Did the loop counter clockwise:Dixie Mine Trail, Coachwhip, Windmill, Bell Pass, Prospector then return on Dixie Mine. It was great being on the East side of the McDowells after doing dozens of hikes on the other side...Windgate Pass, Bell Pass loop, Tom Thumb. Interesting that we only saw one other group on hikers once on the loop portion and I had the feeling they did not know where they were. I think they made a wrong turn off Windgate or Bell Pass. They just had the look and when I asked where they started...after a long pause they said "you know that housing area".
    Our time includes all the rest and lunch stops.

    Permit $$
    information is in description

    Map Drive
    Connector trail - Not Applicable

    To hike
    Beeline or 101 to Shea to Palisades to Golden Eagle Blvd at FH HS to end.
    page created by MJNelson on Oct 17 2010 4:16 pm
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