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Pima Canyon Loop - South Mountain, AZ

Guide 3 Triplogs  0 Topics
  2.7 of 5 
no permit
5 3 0
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Difficulty 1.5 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance Loop 3.52 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,385 feet
Elevation Gain 100 feet
Accumulated Gain 341 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 5.23
Backpack No
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5  2021-04-01 LindaAnn
Author LindaAnn
author avatar Guides 51
Routes 392
Photos 4,092
Trips 1,315 map ( 9,564 miles )
Age 41 Female Gender
Location Ahwatukee, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Jan, Feb, Nov, Dec → 8 AM
Seasons   ALL
Sun  5:18am - 7:40pm
Official Route
0 Alternative

Golf Course Gawking
by LindaAnn

Overview: This an easy loop, recently designated as a 'new' trail, utilizing the plethora of existing trails around the Pima Canyon trailhead.

Hike: This loop can be hiked in either direction, although this guide describes it going counter-clockwise ↺. From the Pima Canyon parking lot, the trail starts on the north side of the lot, east of the picnic benches/ramada, and is signed. The trail will immediately drop down into a wash. As soon as you reach the wash bottom, turn right at the trail marker. Surprisingly, this marker is not signed. It's just a brown post, but take the trail that heads east from the post. As you head east, stay on the main trail, and you will see signed trail markers again.

The trail is easy, with Beacon Hill on the north side of you and a golf course on your right. Continue heading east, following the signs. This section of the trail has a great variety of Sonoran Desert flora and might be a good choice for tourists wanting to see the local desert plant life without making a big hike. After squeezing around the east end of Beacon Hill, the trail turns north, roughly paralleling the golf course as it makes its way gently uphill.

After passing the signed east end of Santa Cruz Hill, the trail drops back down as it winds its way north and west behind several businesses and an apartment complex. Continuing past the apartments, the trail heads west to meet up with Beverly Canyon trail. Turn left, and take Beverly Canyon south, which will still be signed as Pima Canyon Loop. The trail generally follows the power lines, veering back and forth slightly, as it heads slowly uphill. After passing the turnoff for Ridgeline Trail, the trail will drop down into Pima Wash.

At Pima Wash, the signs get a little confusing, then they abruptly end. You have several options--the official route crosses the wash, then immediately up to the big dirt road. At the dirt road, turn left and take it east about a half-mile back to the Pima Canyon parking lot to complete the loop. If walking a dirt road isn't appealing to you, turn left on Pima Wash Trail and take it east back to the Pima Canyon Parking lot. The distance is the same as the road. For a slightly longer loop (and what was one the South Mountain Master Plan, which they are not following very closely), continue south on Beverly Canyon Trail, which will now be signed as Beverly Canyon. As you head south on Beverly Canyon, you can take Marcos De Niza Trail back east to the parking lot for a steep workout or Desert Classic back east to the parking lot for an easy stroll.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

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2021-04-01 LindaAnn
  • 2020 South Mountain Park
    area related
    2020 South Mountain Park
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.

Permit $$

Map Drive
Paved - Car Okay

To Pima Canyon Trailhead
To Pima Canyon Trailhead
This one is a little tough to locate if you're not from the area. It's near Guadalupe Rd. The issue at hand is there are no on-off ramps for Guadalupe Rd. Instead, get off south a mile on Elliot and follow 48th Street north.

Pima Canyon Trailhead is located west off of 48th Street, just south of Guadalupe Road. It's all somewhat confusing. Your first time, go to the intersection of Guadalupe & 48th, then head south. Take the first right and an immediate left into South Mountain/Phx Preserves Park. Follow the access road passing the golf course all the way to the trailhead.

Pima Canyon Trailhead and Marcos de Niza Trailhead are the same now. Long ago, the road continued to Pima Canyon Trailhead.

From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 10.9 mi - about 18 mins
From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 101 mi - about 1 hour 32 mins
From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 155 mi - about 2 hours 25 mins
page created by LindaAnn on Apr 01 2021 12:56 pm
90+° 8am - 6pm kills
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