To Quartz TrailheadNorth GPS Driving Directions
North & West Valley Access by @sarichter
High Clearance possible when dry
To get to the Quartz Peak Trailhead drive west out of Phoenix on I-10 to the Pebble Creek Parkway/Estrella Parkway exit (#126). Take the Estrella Parkway south 8.3 miles to the intersection with Elliot Road. Turn right on Elliot and drive 2.6 miles to the left branching Rainbow Valley Road. Turn left and follow Rainbow Valley Road 9.3 miles to the signed junction with the dirt Riggs Road (about 1/2 mile past the Cotton Citrus Feed store). Turn left (east) onto Riggs and continue on Riggs 4 miles to a 4-way junction with an unsigned road (listed as Buzzard Rd on the BLM map). Continue straight at this junction (still on Riggs) following the phone lines on your right. After an additional 5.3 miles (along the way passing Rainbow Rancho - which has some airplanes, hangers, and a mortar launcher in the front yard, you will arrive at a 'T' junction with a road running parallel to some large high tension lines. Follow the small trail sign and turn right. Drive 1.9 miles further to a left branching road with another 'trail' sign and arrow (this left turn leads to the Quartz Peak Trailhead). Continue straight for another 1.2 miles and turn left. Follow this somewhat rougher dirt road 2.4 miles and turn left again. Follow an even rougher and rockier road about a mile and park.
Southern Access by @hikeaz
All mileages are taken from my trip-meter, and are approximate.
1) From I-10 & Maricopa Road, take Maricopa Road south approx 14 miles to the intersection with Hwy 238 (soon after mile marker 175)
2) Turn right (west) on Hwy 238 and drive approx 9 miles to mile marker 35. A cattle guard crosses the road exactly at mile marker 35, and immediately past the cattle guard on the right side of the road is an unsigned dirt road with a wire gate.
3) Turn right at this unsigned dirt road at mile-marker 35. (At this point you are at the far (south)end of the road that will take you to the Quartz Peak trailhead road about 9.1 miles away according to the tripmeter)
You may need to have a 4WD vehicle for the first 4 miles or so on this road to be safe . The road is mostly friendly to just about any vehicle, but there is one hill near the beginning and a few deep washes after that for which you should have good clearance and 4WD (in case).
4) So, you follow the high tension line towers for approx 9.1 miles from Hwy 238 (passing thru another wire gate after about 3.4 miles).
Note: There are many unsigned turnoffs along this road, including quite a few in the vicinity of the Quartz Peak trailhead turnoff, so it's important to note that the Quartz Peak turnoff will be almost directly underneath one of the high tension line towers (I think we actually had to pass under the guy wires of the tower at the turnoff), and there should be a small "trail" sign at the turnoff as well (although it may be facing north)
5) Turn right at the Quartz Peak trailhead road and follow it 1.9 miles to the trailhead.
Simplified Southern Access by @rwstorm
A better approach from the South versus the traditional turnoff from Highway 238 at mile marker 35, is to continue on for another mile or two on 238 and turn off at 91st Avenue and work your way around the Waste Management Landfill and Mobile Airport. Then continue north and intersect with the traditional drive in road, bypassing the steep hill, deep wash crossings, and wire gates. Much easier and only adds a few miles to the drive. Here is the gps drive route I put together in 2014 for this: South GPS Driving DirectionsFrom PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 56.0 mi - about 1 hour 42 minsFrom TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 127 mi - about 2 hours 38 minsFrom FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 186 mi - about 3 hours 37 mins