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Arizona Canal - Scottsdale Rd to McDonald, AZ
mini location map2014-04-30
13 by photographer avatarblack_toes
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Arizona Canal - Scottsdale Rd to McDonald, AZ 
Arizona Canal - Scottsdale Rd to McDonald, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 30 2014
black_toes
Hiking4.55 Miles 196 AEG
Hiking4.55 Miles   2 Hrs   22 Mns   2.76 mph
196 ft AEG      43 Mns Break
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
This is a bland canal stretch that crosses just SE of the intersection of Scottsdale and Camelback Roads, then heads almost due north until you strike McDonald. All of it is residential. Some nice homes and modest ones and condos that back up right on the canal.

Did a loop hike of it, all of it on compacted dirt. I hiked out from Scottsdale Rd on the E side and returned from McDonald on the W. On the way you cross two major thoroughfares, busy Camelback and less busy Chaparral. Neither has an underpass so you take your chances with traffic. SRP says the distance from Scottsdale Rd to McDonald is 1.7 mi one way. My GPS had it at 1.76.

I found a 3-hour parking spot on Stetson, just W of Scottsdale Rd by the Bungalow restaurant and walked over to the canal. The first thing I noticed was Sunrise Pk directly in front of me. You also have an unobstructed view of Thompson Pk and the other McDowells rising to the left. Thought I might catch a glimpse of Pinnacle Pk or Tom's Thumb along the way but didn't.

I'm used to seeing dozens of mallards on the canal but none today. None, unless it was the female paddling by with three very small ducklings. No fish splashings either. Did view a half dozen ringed-necks and a couple of cormorants. Also lots of swallows flitting around the pedestrian bridge at McDonald.

There is a nice thicket running for about a half mile S of McDonald on the W bank. Mesquites and palo verde mostly but believe I saw a few beautiful Mexican palo verdes as well, with their long drooping branches and yellow/orange flowers. Much activity in there. Quail and other birds. And numerous desert cottontails, bunnies as well as adults.

Added an extra mile after thinking I'd lost the last of the two trekking poles brought back from Switzerland two summers ago. But luckily found it leaning up on a fence by the pedestrian bridge. Very warm with little traffic, maybe a dozen humans all evening, divided equally between hikers, bikers and jogers.
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242 Photosets

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