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The Best Hikes in Phoenix

83,277 Triplog Reviews in the Phoenix
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14.13 mi • 827 ft aeg
Granite - Cholla - points north loopy
With the nice weather, I didn't feel like doing stuff around the house.

I decided I was going to clear my head and churn out some easy miles in the MSPN.

Just a smattering of people out, split 50/50 hikers and MTB'ers.

The Granite Mountain - Cholla Mountain loop gets most of the traffic here having the Balanced Rock, Amphitheater and Cathedral Rock attractions. I do enjoy these trails and they are perfect for flat-lander out of town guests, but I enjoy the relative solitude of the trails north of here.

Add in the sweet rock formations everywhere and a couple of crested saguaros, with the weather and it made for an enjoyable afternoon.
16.98 mi • 2,959 ft aeg
It has been almost 2 years since I have been to Trap Canyon, so I figured it was time to go out there again.

We did a CW loop and went into Trap Canyon from the west.

I have been dealing with a foot injury, so the going was slow. The rocky, rubbly, and overgrown trails didn't help matters any.

There was more vegetation in Trap Canyon than I remembered, and there was more water in the canyon than I have seen before. The overgrowth and water presented some additional obstacles to deal with. We climbed up to an upper alcove and had lunch before proceeding further into the canyon. With the slow going we did not go as far into the canyon as I had gone the last couple of times that I was there.

In terms of overgrowth on the trails, the Bluff Springs Trail was the best of the bunch. There was a good bit of catsclaw on the Red Tanks Trail, and in some places this trail is barely recognizable. The Whiskey Spring Trail was somewhat better, but not by a lot. It seems like there has been some erosion on many sections of the trails, with rocks and rubble littering the trails. I guess that after paving parking lots and building lavish restrooms at ranger stations, the Tonto NF has no money left over for trail maintenance and improvements.

There is lots of water in this area of the Supes right now. Trails are overgrown and in need of tread repair.
10.31 mi • 1,323 ft aeg
Ridgeback-Ocotillo-Sidewinder-Apache Vista
After dealing with two SOS alert phone calls from when I dropped my watch yesterday, we continued to the Trailhead. FYI there is construction northbound on Cave Creek Road north of Deer Valley Rd to Jomax (one lane).

Kelly tried to hike me into the ground, but I lived :sweat:. She tested the heck out of my "hiking prowess"... Can't remember the last time we've hiked together so it's obviously been too long.

Started out a little chilly and didn't warm up until we headed up Ridgeback. From then on it was a beautiful afternoon and we couldn't have asked for a better weather day. We came back down Ridgeback the way we came up and then headed west on Ocotillo. The trail was nice all day; one of the reasons I love hiking out here.

We came to the junction with Sidewinder and headed east but first... oh ya, that long hill; I forgot how long it was and following in Kelly's footsteps, let alone keeping up with her : rambo : , took a little extra effort. Fortunately, she was having a good conversation so it takes the stress off a little. Oh, and then the hill continued just a little more.

But from there, it was mostly downhill with a a few up hills until we got back to the Ridgeback intersection. Just before that I got growled at by a dog I had just complimented. Once we got around to near Apache Vista, Kelly thot she was a flight steward and guided me to go UP the peak. We finished off the top loop; then I saw that we had already done nine miles.

We cruised on down and back on the Sidewinder to finish off the hike in the shade. However, we glanced over to the gleaming teddy chollas across the way as they were somewhat isolated on empty ground in a few large areas. Funny I had not noticed that before.

We had a celebratory Retirement Dinner in honor of Kelly at Valle Luna on Cave Creek/Greenway. I haven't been here in twenty years. Food and service was top notch, although we initially thot we might need a map to get out of the restaurant. PS We saw Mars next to the moon upon our exit.

Great hike Kelly. Thanks for leading. I enjoyed the company, extra push and moral support. Let's not wait so long next time! Interesting differences in our RS stats altho I sync my route via the Edit on HAZ.

WATCH: 1:22 PM start, 1368-2189 elevation, 125 bpm/164 max burning 1913 calories. I was so spent I forgot to turn off my watch :lol: so I don't have other stats. However, starting temp was 59.9 mostly cloudy, 55% humidity and I got my longest distance trophy for the year.

Desert Senna
9.88 mi • 1,420 ft aeg
Phoenix Sonoran Preserve North
angela suggested this loop with the two high points
we set out from apache wash trailhead around 1300, going clockwise
we hadn't hiked together in ages so we had a lot to catch up on :o
the miles went by quickly with good conversation
good trail, good views from ridgeback overlook and apache vista, good air quality today, perfect weather
nice hike :)
angela bought dinner after at valle luna to celebrate my retirement - thank you!
5.32 mi • 558 ft aeg
Desert Hills Loop
We both felt the In-N-Out urge today. :oops: The nearest location is over near I-17. That's $5 worth of gas round trip for a couple of $4 burgers so we needed to make the trip worthwhile. Good thing they don't have one closer or we'd be much larger hikers. We stopped off at the Desert Hills TH on 7th Ave. and Carefree Highway to get in a hike on the trip over and to build up our appetites.

This northern trail system is great for wildflowers [ photo ] in the spring but I don't think it gets a lot of use otherwise. We arrived at around noon and the massive TH parking lot was a graveyard. Sprinkles to start then full sun at the finish. The tread has deteriorated greatly from when we were here last, which was prior to Covid. Looks like these two trails get mainly horse traffic now. I think that really tears them up. Anyway, we had a great hike and a good meal afterward. Double-double w/onion. :DANCE:
12.89 mi • 2,983 ft aeg
Windgate-Thumb-East End-Bell Loop
Beautiful weather for a hike. I started at the crack of 11 at a surprisingly busy Gateway TH.

My loop was CW starting on the Windgate Trail. I passed a smattering of people until I got to the turn for Toms Thumb. I like the climb up this trail, it's especially nice with the cloud cover. I got passed by a couple of runners.

Once up top, I noticed there was a climber on top of Toms Thumb. I made my way over to and down the East End Trail/Bell Pass Trail, where I had the backside of the McD's to myself.

Really saw nobody until I merged with the popular Gateway Loop, where the Snowbirds and Scottdale's finest were on parade.
1.23 mi • 766 ft aeg
Getting back into regular hiking and Lone Mountain is always a good place to work on building up stamina and getting in some views.

My #2 son and I hiked up and took a look around. The clouds looked nice, but there seemed to be too many near the horizon, so we opted to hike back down before the sunset, thinking it would be a dud. No other hikers on the mountain until we got near the bottom.

As we got back to the truck, I could tell the sunset was going to really nice. So, we drove down Usery Pass Road and caught it there.

Another nice visit to this cool little peak.
2.68 mi • 434 ft aeg
a little warm up hike for my bigger hike tomorrow... Did a half-loop counterclockwise around the western side. Saw two butterflies and maybe 1/2 dozen or so hikers. Though humid again today, there was at least a little breeze. Ground was still damp and even soft in some areas (that always feels so good). Smelled good again today. Recorded trip #97.

WATCH: 2:22-3:16PM, 2.42 miles, 1496-1734 elevation. 134 avg bpm/159 max, 34% Zone 5 max, 45% Zone 4 anaerobic, 19% Zone 3 aerobic burning 348 calories. Temp 66.1 partly cloud and 61% humidity.
10.53 mi • 1,861 ft aeg
Peak 3098 from Golden Eagle TH
I decided to stay close to home this morning and get in a few miles and a bit of elevation gain.

I started at the Golden Eagle TH, went through the Eagles Nest community, got on the Dixie Mine Trail, and then took the Sonoran Trail over to the Fountain Hills Preserve. I ascended up to Peak 3098, aka the West View Overlook. I went back the way that I came except that I skipped a portion of the Sonoran Trail by taking the Lower Sonoran Trail.

It was a nice morning for a hike and it was a reminder of why I like December in the VOS.
5.52 mi • 1,318 ft aeg
Canyon of the Waterfalls
Decided to check out Canyon of the Waterfalls after ~30 hours of rain. The Superstitions were enshrouded in clouds. There were some muddy areas on the trail. We took a few wrong turns but figured it out, and ascended into the clouds. I've seen better volume in these falls, but they were flowing pretty decently. We climbed up a few levels, but the rocks were pretty slippery, and we couldn't see more than 15 yards ahead because of the fog / clouds. We hung out, ate, and splashed around in the falls. There were some nice views and great vibes. There were ~20 other vehicles in the lot, but we only saw 3 other people along the way.

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