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Shaw Butte - Western Route, AZ

no permit
17 11 0
Guide 11 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Phoenix > Phoenix Central
3 of 5 by 3
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Difficulty 2.5 of 5
Distance One Way 1.25 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1 feet
Elevation Gain 814 feet
Accumulated Gain 909 feet
Avg Time One Way 0.5-1 hour
Kokopelli Seeds 4.28
Interest Peak
Backpack No
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Inaugural Calculation on Button Tap!
10  2015-11-17
Shaw Butte Trail #306
10  2014-04-16 Stoic
4  2013-12-08
Shaw Butte to Camelback
3  2013-10-14 black_toes
Author black_toes
author avatar Guides 4
Routes 51
Photos 1,545
Trips 348 map ( 1,247 miles )
Age 81 Male Gender
Location Phoenix, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Mar, Nov, Feb, Apr
Sun  6:16am - 6:27pm
Official Route
1 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
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This is a lightly-used and steep trail that leads up the spine of three hills covered in chaparral to the summit of Shaw Butte, the tallest point in North Mountain Park at 2,149' el. The path is faint and very rocky in places. Bikers will find this trail extremely difficult, but I've seen at least one jogger coming down. The hardest part is coming up the western slope of "Baby Butte," the hill with the single tower. No switchbacks, just straight up. This segment is among the steepest I've come across in the park. Once on top by the single tower, you pick up a service road down to a saddle on the west slope of Shaw, then on up steeply to the summit, again on a service road.

Access: This is as far as I know an unnamed trail with no trailhead to speak of. You can park at the south end of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #2, southeast corner of Sweetwater and 19th Ave. Walk over to a nearby sign that says you are entering the park and pick your way up to the saddle. From there, make a left onto a clearly marked trail that leads around one hill and over another.

Warning: The western part of the trail, from "Baby Butte" on down the parking lot, is no place to maneuver in darkness, even with a flashlight. The trail is hard enough to follow in daylight, and the slopes are filled with sharp outcropping and losse rock.

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2013-10-25 black_toes

    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 Triplog Reviews
    Shaw Butte - Western Route
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    My normal hiking times have been hard to come by, but I was able to squeeze in a weekend trip. I took my big dog along and we did the Shaw Butte loop CCW. I had plans fro hitting North Mountain as well, but the pup was pretty worn out after SB so we opted for the shorter loop back.
    Shaw Butte - Western Route
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Had a long work day, so not too much time for hiking. I thought I would give the western route a go, I had not done it from the ground up yet. I ended up parking in the neighborhood off of Sweetwater, the Church on the corner (formerly Fraternal Order of Police?) had its parking lot gated and locked. Got started about 5:30 just before the sunset. There are a few use trails to use, nothing too confusing. The trail seems to disappear about 100' from the western radio tower, but at that point you can just find the path of least resistance to get up. Took a nice break on top of Shaw Butte to soak in the unbelievable sunset, the western sky was electric with reds and oranges in the clouds. Made my way down in the dark, but the moon was just about full so I did not have to use my headlamp at all. I think it took me longer to get down than up since I had to take it slow and keep an eye on my footing. Great alternative for my local usual hike.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    From downtown Phoenix, take Interstate 17 to Cactus and exit to the right until you arrive at 19th Ave. From there take a left (to the north), and travel down about a half-mile to the FOP Lodge #2 at Sweetwater.
    page created by black_toes on Oct 25 2013 12:41 am
    help comment issue

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