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Ocotillo Trail - Sonoran Preserve North
69 Photosets

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mini location map2021-03-11
15 by photographer avatarkingsnake
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Ocotillo Trail - Sonoran Preserve NorthPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 11 2021
kingsnake
Hiking9.17 Miles 1,124 AEG
Hiking9.17 Miles   3 Hrs   8 Mns   2.93 mph
1,124 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
I originally planned to hike Cave Creek Trail #4 today, which has a great variety of flowers ( [ photoset ] ), but given spring’s slow start, I decided to stick to lower, slightly warmer, terrain in hope that would make a difference: I headed for the Phoenix Sonoran Preserve. Since I did the south unit last year, I figured I would introduce myself to the north unit, by hiking Ocotillo Trail, Sidewinder Trail (turning back where those two overlap) and Apache Vista Trail.

I’m lucky I found the Apache Wash Trailhead, as the area was undeveloped eight years ago when I bought my Acura RDX. (I’ve been too lazy to update the GPS.) Note: There is no potable water. The most interesting feature of the trailhead, were cement inlays pointing out the direction and distance to various terrain features, such as Piestewa Peak. 🧭

Just standing at the trailhead, it was obvious there would be very slim pickings for flowers. So, as I headed west on Ocotillo Trail, I was shooting video, instead of stills, because I wanted to have enough material for my hike video. The only non-yellow flowers I found were a couple of tiny lupine not far from the trailhead.

Sidewinder Trail is rated moderately difficult — entirely for the 350 ft. climb up Hill 2199 from Ocotillo Trail. (Or from the northern Ridgeback Trail connector if you are hiking counter-clockwise.) Otherwise Sidewinder Trail is easy. It is a bit rocky in a few spots, but never bad. There is no traffic noise. (Unless you count the planes and helicopters that were overhead all morning.) ✈️

I only remember one dog walker and one trail runner on Sidewinder Trail, but there were of mountain bikes all morning. Maybe I should get my MTB tuned back up? It’s been almost seven years since I went bike riding. 🤔

I didn’t stay long on top of Apache Vista: As elsewhere in the Phoenix Sonoran Preserve, there is no shade. (The only decent shade I recall was on Sidewinder Trail, in a wash on the east slope of Hill 2199.)

I finished my hike in 3:08, which is over 2.9 mph, moving time — which should give you a good idea how casual a stroll this hike is. Along the way, I only drank two bottles of water and half a G2 Gatorade. Totally forgot lunch, so I plowed through my gorp on the way home!

Hike Video: https://vimeo.com/523417814
Named place
Named place
Pyramid Peak
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
One small group of tiny lupine. Scattered withered britlebush. Occasional creosote. Ironically, on the drive back along the parkway, it was going gangbusters with brittlebush, and even plenty of desert globemallow. 😏
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http://prestonm.com : Everyone's enjoyment of the outdoors is different and should be equally honored.
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