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  This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Preferred" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.
 

Palo Verde Hills HP, AZ

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Statistics
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Difficulty 3 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance Round Trip 3.7 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,086 feet
Elevation Gain 1,086 feet
Accumulated Gain 1,125 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 3 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 9.33
 Interest Off-Trail Hiking & Peak
 Backpack Possible - Not Popular
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21  2023-01-05 DixieFlyer
Author
author avatar Guides 74
Routes 885
Photos 11,645
Trips 785 map ( 8,976 miles )
Age Male Gender
Location Fountain Hills, AZ
Historical Weather
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Preferred Dec, Jan, Feb, Mar → 7 AM
Seasons   Late Autumn to Early Spring
Sun  7:27am - 6:05pm
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 Water


Verde with Envy
by DixieFlyer

  Likely In-Season!
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Overview
This hike is to the summit of the Palo Verde Hills mountain range highpoint (elevation of 2,172 feet and prominence of 1,012 feet). In deference to its elevation, the unnamed highpoint is marked "2172" on topographic maps.


The Palo Verde Hills are a small range in western Maricopa County, near the town of Tonopah. It is about 5 miles southeast of Saddle Mountain - Tonopah.

History
Indigenous people once lived in the area, and there are reputed to be petroglyphs in the Palo Verde Hills. However, I did not see any glyphs when I did this hike.


The Palo Verde Hills is so named because early settlers found many palo verde trees growing in the area. Arizona Place Names

Hike
This is a very straightforward hike. From the parking spot, the Palo Verde Hills highpoint is clearly visible to the northeast.


You will initially walk across the flat desert floor for about 3/4 mile. This is easy walking with sparsely spaced creosote bushes being the only vegetation. You'll then begin gaining some elevation as you traverse around the right side of a knob that you see in front of you. This will take you to a saddle at 1,275 feet of elevation, after hiking 1/2 mile.

At this point, you'll have to make a fairly steep ascent up a hillside that is strewn with black basalt rocks and boulders. The climb looks daunting from a distance, but it is not bad. The footing is good, the rocks are generally stable, and there is no vegetation to impede your progress. Just take it a step at a time and the climb will go by quickly.

After about 0.3 miles you'll come to another saddle that will give you a bit of a breather before scampering up some other, less steep slopes as you continue on a ridgeline that is southwest from the summit. Before you know it you'll be at the summit, which has a large flat area.

The summit cairn has a height-of-light sticking out of it, and there is a summit register log with some recognizable names. There are nice 360-degree views at the summit, most notably of Woolsey Peak to the south and Saddle Mountain to the west.

Water Sources
Don't count on finding any water out here, except perhaps right after a monsoon rain storm.

Camping
Disbursed camping is allowed, with a limit of 14 days.

Synopsis
This hike likely won't make anyone's top 10 list, but it is an enjoyable low-elevation desert hike. There is nothing really difficult about the hike -- there is no bushwhacking, no cliffs to deal with, and nothing really complicated. The geology is not as nice as nearby Saddle Mountain, but if you are in the area and have 3 hours to kill you might want to give this hike a try. If you enjoy solitude, you'll almost certainly find it on this hike.

Check out the Official Route and Triplog.

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2023-01-05 DixieFlyer
    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 $$
    None


     Directions
    or
    or
     Road
    Strictly 4x4

    To hike
    Take I-10 west from Phoenix to Exit 94 for 411th Avenue. Go south on 411th Avenue for 2.9 miles to W Salome Highway. Take a right on W Salome Highway and travel for 4.4 miles, and make a left turn on unmarked FR 8201. The turn is onto a gravel road at these coordinates: 33.56712, -113.01131

    Continue on FR 8201 for 5.3 miles and turn off the road to the left and park adjacent to a power line tower. FR 8201 is a good dirt road for the most part; however, after traveling for 2.8 miles there is a wash that you have to drop into and out of that will require a high clearance 4WD vehicle to safely navigate. There are a few forks in the road on FR 8201 that are not always clearly marked. For that reason, I included a GPX track for the drive from the pavement.

    Much of the drive is adjacent to and underneath a power line. Some of the land in the area is likely privately owned. I saw no signage of any sort that would restrict access.
    page created by DixieFlyer on Jan 05 2023 3:26 pm
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