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Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve, AZ

no permit
583 126 1
Guide 126 Triplogs  1 Topic
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Phoenix > Phoenix NE
2.7 of 5 by 20
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Difficulty 1.5 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance One Way 1.11 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,728 feet
Elevation Gain 53 feet
Accumulated Gain 131 feet
Kokopelli Seeds 1.55
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Inaugural Calculation on Button Tap!
11  2019-04-15
Sonoran Preserve - Peak 2383
4  2018-07-06
Dixie Mountain Loop - Sonoran Preserve
6  2018-03-04
Dixie Mountain Loop - Sonoran Preserve
5  2017-12-26
Dixie Mountain Loop - Sonoran Preserve
4  2017-10-10
Dixie Mountain Loop - Sonoran Preserve
6  2017-09-26
Dixie Mountain Loop - Sonoran Preserve
9  2017-05-18
Union Peak Trail - Sonoran Preserve
7  2017-05-07
Great Horned Owl Trail - Sonoran Preserve
Page 1,  2,  3,  4,  5 ... 9
Author HAZ_Hikebot
author avatar Guides 16,882
Routes 16,052
Photos 24
Trips 1 map ( 6 miles )
Age 22 Male Gender
Location TrailDEX, HAZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Mar, Nov, Feb, Jan
Sun  6:12am - 6:34pm
Official Route
32 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby

Author Full Detail Guide
This trail begins .25 miles from the Desert Vista Trailhead via Hawk's Nest Trail. The trail can be used as the southern leg of a 2.3 mile loop by heading west to the Valle Vista Trail, turning north on Valle Vista Trail then heading east on the Dixie Mountain Loop back to the end of Hawk's Nest Trail which returns to the trailhead.

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  • SPS 2016
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    SPS 2016
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One-Way Notice
This hike is listed as One-Way.

When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
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 of 38 deeper Triplog Reviews
Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve
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Just a glorified dog walk with the pups. Nice temps and great late afternoon conditions. The trails were a little busy near the trailhead, but still a pleasant walk with the pups. We knocked out Dixie and Union "peaks" along the way, making our own variation of the Dixie Mountain Loop.
Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve
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Phoenix Sonoran Preserve website states that the park is open from 5am to 7pm. Got to the Desert Vista trailhead just before 6am to find a line of cars waiting for the park ranger to open the gate. Crazy humidity made today's hike with harem member Maria quite unpleasant. Someone placed a summit register at Union Peak. Creative Maria left an interesting entry with yesterday's date :) One of my favorite city hikes!
Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve
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Union Peak Loop-West
A great day to be out on a Trail anywhere. I decided to do this Loop from the west side as I did it from the east side last time.
It is a great way to hit Union Peak from the south. The trail is not as easy as it is from the north. There are more switchbacks going up and really I don't think I will ever hike down it but that's just me.

Poppies everywhere
Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve
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It really was great to get out today with Rowdy. I had my granddaughter for the tree day weekend for her 15th birthday. So Rowdy was really glad to be on the trail again.
The really sad part is the way Joe list things on the menu as hiking, run/jog, hang gliding and storm chasing. If he would add sale chasing and mall walking I would have the most miles this month.
When we asked our granddaughter what she wanted to do for her birthday weekend she said shopping and she got an extra day to shop.
Well I think I walk over a hundred miles going back and forth waiting on my wife and granddaughter. They spent over an hour and half in a store called Pink. We shopped a three malls a few shopping centers and my ankle is killing me.

But today's hike was a real relaxer for me. Just Rowdy and me and the desert just the way I like it. When we reached the trailhead there was only one car.
It was not to hot but seemed very humid. I really had to hike in mind we just started hiking and I turn when ever I felt like it. When we reached the trailhead I saw this very beautiful young women and of course her mom. I did ask if I could take her picture and she said no so I let it go. This was the second time I seen a beautiful women on a trail with a wedding dress flowers posing for pictures in the sunset awesome.

Oh and I did talk to another park ranger about my last encounter with another park ranger. She knew who he was and laugh. I showed her that Rowdy was on a leash and that the signs don't say that I have to hold the leash and she laugh again of course Rowdy came over for her to pet him and she did.

I told her about the beer incident with the other ranger and of course he really doesn't know the rules. The signs are all the same everywhere but beer permits are for city parks and not preserves.
Hoping for another good hike tomorrow. Sorry if I bored anyone.
Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve
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Well again we were the only the only ones at the trailhead and that is nice. We got started just after 11am and it was warm and humid. Rowdy struggled a little with the humidity and so did I. We stopped and took more breaks and longer breaks. I was not on a schedule and no particular place to be so we took it easy.
We got within a half a mile from the end of Cactus Wren Trail and I decided to turn back and get Rowdy home.
We stopped and Rowdy found some nice shade so I put my pack down gave him water. I decided to do a little exploring while Rowdy rested. I did check out a old mine that has been filled in and then walked up what looked like an old road but did not find anything. When I got back Rowdy was ready and I planned on some more breaks for Rowdy but he did not them as the weather change again.

The clouds blocked out the sun which Rowdy loved and as we moved toward the Valle Verde Trail. Once on the Valle Verde Trail the winds picked ... 9KS0. And shortly after the rains and hail came. I decided to head up to the Dixie Mountain Loop Trail. Once we were on the trail the rains let up and we headed toward the Hawks Nest Trail and by that time the weather improved so I decided to do the loop but as we headed down the trail the rain picked up and then I called it a day and turned around and headed back to the trailhead and then home.
Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve
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Well I decided to take Rowdy out for a hike up to Peak 2383 but that didn't happen.
When I pulled into Desert Vista Trailhead it was empty and all mine.

There was scattered clouds and it looked clear towards Peak 2383 so off we went. The temperature was great with a nice little breeze. By the time we were about a mile into this little hike the thunder started and never let up. ... EUKM

The rain followed the thunder and it was light at first and then dumped on us. By the time we connected to the Valle Verde Trail it was getting worse so I decided to turn around and head on home and I did just that.
Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve
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Another nice day for a hike. Rowdy and I even got to enjoy a few sprinkles today.
There is a new sign on the trailhead which a couple of people asked me about. I know the only reason they asked about it is because I had Rowdy on the trail. And yet there was a Park Ranger there and he never said a word to me about Rowdy being off leash or even for being on the trail.
I guess dogs are no longer allowed in the preserve.
Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve
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Cactus Wren Loop
Well I decided to take Rowdy out for a little hike before work hoping to miss the storm. Well at the 3 mile mark we got hit hard all at once :o . We got hit with rain, hail, lightning and thunder all at once. We both were really soaked and cold as it got really windy.
I had planned on hitting peak 2383 but decided not to as everything was soaking wet and I really don't need to slip and fall. It did stop about a mile from the trailhead. On a positive note the restrooms at the trailhead are now open. :y:
Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve
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Cactus Wren-Great Horned Owl Trails
What can I say my wife wasn't feeling well this morning so I took care of everything before heading out which was just afternoon. Believe it or not but it was warm when we started our hike.
I started out to do the Great Horned Owl Loop but decided to just jump on the Cactus Wren on the way back. There really wasn't a whole lot going as far as wildlife.
When I reached the Desert Tortoise Trail I just decided to stay on the Valle Verde Trail and I am glad I did. Once I started down the Hawk's Nest Trail I notice two baby owls in the nest. They were very young and mom was with them with dad very close by. It was really a awesome experience to see.
Desert Tortoise Trail - Sonoran Preserve
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Well it was a beautiful morning just to be outside. When I reached the trailhead I stopped and talked to construction workers there and they said the new restrooms will be ready to go for this weekend. Which is great news as it will free up more parking spaces as well.
On the way up I stopped again and talked to a fireman sitting out by his truck to see what was going on. He told me it was just training for rescue and as Rowdy and I headed up Hawk's Nest Trail we saw four fireman heading down the trail. I thought it was odd that they were not carrying and gear at all and I also notice none of them had water as well. So I was just wonder what kind of the training they were doing.
After that we continued on our and as we started up Union Peak I did notice group of horse back riders coming up the trail. As they caught up to us on Union Peak Trail I decide to take a break off the trail so they could get by us. After they passed us we headed up to the top and met them there again. We talked a little as two of them told me they just retired from a mountain search and rescue team but I can't remember the name. Oh and they all really liked Rowdy even the horse. After our little visit Rowdy and I headed back down in front of them as they took a longer break.
It was really fun and interesting hike.

Permit $$

Map Drive
Paved - Car Okay

To Desert Vista Trailhead
From I-17 and Jomax Rd, take Jomax to it's east end. Turn left on North Valley Pkwy, right on Copperhead Trail, left on Melvern Trail, and right on Desert Vista Trail to go behind the neighborhood community center. Desert Vista dead ends at the trailhead parking lot. Studying a map before you go is recommended as the trailhead is somewhat hidden in the neighborhood.

Address: 1901 W Desert Vista Trail, Phoenix

From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 29.4 mi, 34 mins
From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 134 mi, 2 hours 4 mins
From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 122 mi, 1 hour 54 mins
page created by hippiepunkpirate on Dec 21 2011 1:16 pm
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