Hike with a Split Personality
Hike: From the popular Telegraph Pass Trailhead in Ahwatukee you ascend to the pass in 1.2 mi. This is a shared experience. I call it the housewife express. There's also a good mix of families and mountain bikers on each trip.
Then it's a left following the National Trail. Here you loose about ninety percent of the crowd. Follow the road left until you come to the guard rail. At which point you'll see the trail pick up again. Soon you hit the switchbacks and work up to the ridge. Once at the highpoint, in another 0.7 mi, you'll loose all other taggers.
Continuing on you follow a sweet ridge 1.0 mi over to Goat Hill. It's rare to encounter others on this stretch out of season. This is the finest inner city ridge. It takes you past the Ranger Trail junction and onto Goat Hill. Goat Hill is the tallest, furthest and western most peak of the mini Four Peaks formation. Return by the same route.
Late Spring Journey - Early April: Spring continues it's cycle, Creosote Bush is in full bloom. Avoid contact as it dyes all a saturated yellow swath.
Brittle Bush has turned to tambourines in the wind. Skeletons of fiddlenecks stand as fuel. At which, even the lightest brush will torture you worse than a foxtail ever imagined. Scorpionweed resembles an ornament of exposure. Ironwoods droop in glee. Saguaros laugh in anticipation as round one of summer nears. In the Valley of the Sun autumn passes the baton to spring. Winter is skipped and summer extreme is the result.
Past the populated ascent and onto the ridge you enter the Summer of '42. Hillsides are a canvas of subtle hues. Bone dry wildflowers crack in the last gasp of spring. Albeit sad this is life in the purest sense. Few will ever understand for Arizona isn't a destination, it's an experience.
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.