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Margies Cove Trail, AZ

Guide 47 Triplogs  2 Topics
  3.1 of 5 
no permit
407 47 2
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Difficulty 2.5 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance One Way 8 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,118 feet
Elevation Gain 859 feet
Accumulated Gain 875 feet
Kokopelli Seeds 10.92
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8  2021-05-01 adilling
9  2021-05-01 DarthStiller
9  2021-02-07 GrangerGuy
7  2020-03-15
Margie in the desert
8  2019-03-02
North Maricopa Mountains Loop
10  2019-03-02
North Maricopa Mountains Loop
15  2019-03-02
North Maricopa Mountains Loop
13  2019-03-02
North Maricopa Mountains Loop
Page 1,  2,  3,  4,  5
Author HAZ_Hikebot
author avatar Guides 16,862
Routes 16,287
Photos 24
Trips 1 map ( 6 miles )
Age 24 Male Gender
Location TrailDEX, HAZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb → 8 AM
Seasons   Late Autumn to Early Spring
Sun  5:21am - 7:41pm
Official Route
5 Alternative

Motorized access to the east trailhead is currently not permitted, most likely due to smuggling activity. The trail itself is open and may be accessed from Margie's Cove Western Trailhead.

Margies Cove Trail is a nearly level, 9-mile route through the heart of the 63,200-acre North Maricopa Mountains Wilderness. The North Maricopa Mountains are a jumble of long ridges and isolated peaks separated by extensive, saguaro-studded bajadas and wide desert washes. Cholla, ocotillo, prickly pear, paloverde, ironwood, and Mexican jumping bean complement the thick stands of saguaro to form classic Sonoran Desert vistas. Commonly seen wildlife include desert mule deer, javelina, desert bighorn sheep, coyote, desert tortoise, and numerous varieties of lizards and birds.

Margies Cove Trail follows a combination of former vehicle tracks and wide, unmarked desert washes. No trail signage or directional markers are available along the route; therefore, this trail is recommended only for experienced hikers skilled in reading topographic maps. Margies Cove Trail intersects the northern terminus of the Brittlebush Trail in the North Maricopa Mountains Wilderness interior.

Margies Cove West Trailhead includes day-use parking for ten vehicles, three campsites with picnic tables and steel fire rings, a vault toilet, and informational signage. Margies Cove East Trailhead has day-use parking for five vehicles and informational signage.

Margies Cove Trail is not mapped; however, the route is depicted on the USGS 7.5-minute topographic maps "Butterfield Pass, Ariz." and "Cotton Center SE, Ariz." The remainder of the North Maricopa Mountains Wilderness is depicted on USGS 7.5- minute topographic maps "Margies Peak, Ariz.," and Mobile NW, Ariz."

  • Margies Cove Trail receives the greatest use from October through April. At other times, the trail is little used. Always tell a friend or relative where you are going and when you plan to return.

  • Drinking water is not provided at Margies Cove West or Margies Cove East trailheads, so bring plenty.
  • The North Maricopa Mountains are prone to heavy rains and flash floods. Do not attempt to cross flooded washes.
  • You may encounter rattlesnakes or other poisonous creatures; watch for them and be careful where you put your hands and feet. Do not harass reptiles. Most bites result from people playing with, collecting, or attempting to kill them.
  • Fires are not allowed in the North Maricopa Mountains Wilderness.


Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

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2018-07-14 HAZ_Hikebot
  • 100 Classic Hikes - 2007
    area related
    100 Classic Hikes - 2007

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.

Permit $$

Map Drive
High Clearance possible when dry

To hike
To access Margies Cove West Trailhead, drive Arizona Highway 85 to Woods Road (just south of milepost 134) and turn east. At the cattleguard/dirt road, follow the brown TRAIL signs on the left, which guide you west, then north, along the Hwy 85 fenceline, then east 3.8 miles to Route 8001C; turn right, drive south 1.2 miles to the trailhead. A high-clearance two-wheel-drive vehicle is suitable for this road.
90+° 8am - 6pm kills
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