Scottsdale, known for its fancy spa resorts and golf courses, is also home to some of the best hiking trails in the continental US.
This beautiful city is begging to be explored, with its spiny cacti and remarkable desert views. But keep in mind that the Arizona desert’s dry climate and rocky paths call for lots of water and proper hiking boots.
Take a look at some options here. With the proper hiking gear, you are set to have an amazing experience in the desert. Let’s take a look at the top 10 places to hike in Scottsdale:
Sunrise Peak is a 3.6-mile trail ideal for hiking, running and getting an up-close look at the Scottsdale wildlife. This trail features wildflowers and is great for bird watching. Just as its name suggests, the sunrise at the peak of this trail is a wondrous sight to behold.
Pinnacle Peak Park
Pinnacle Peak Park is by far one of the area’s most picturesque hikes. It is filled with abundant wildlife and unforgettable views of both Phoenix and Scottsdale. This relatively short 1.75-mile trail is ideal for families and newbie hikers looking for some fun. Rock climbing is also a great option here.
It is a challenging trail that takes you through a wonderland of boulders and interesting rock features. Perfect for experienced hikers and families on an adventure! Prepare for stunning city views and herds of deer grazing, along your walk to the top.
Camelback Mountain, which resembles the hump and head of a kneeling camel, is one of the most famous sights of Scottsdale. This red sandstone and granite mountain is a challenging climb, more suited for experienced hikers.
The Bajada Nature Trail
It is a wide, scenic trail that’s perfect for newbie hikers. One of the easiest hikes in Scottsdale, this trail does not disappoint. Beautiful plants, geology, and animals are abundant on this trail.
Brown’s Ranch Trailhead
Brown’s Ranch Trailhead is great for mountain biking, rock climbing, and hiking. This trail is famous for its interpretive signs, hitching rails, and horse troughs. If you are considering biking or rock climbing, it’s imperative to have a sturdy backpack to hold your water bottle and other belongings. Take a look at some great options here.
Lost Dog Wash
Lost Dog Wash is a 4.4-mile trail featuring beautiful wildflowers and rare crested saguaro cacti. This popular trail provides a fabulous introduction to the Sonoran Desert ecology.
Marcus Landslide Trail
This trail is famous for its mushroom-shaped rocks and desert poppies. The trail is easy and ideal for a mellow day outdoors. Near the end of this trail, you will find a gigantic boulder called the Submarine – this is a must-see sight!
Pemberton Hiking Trail
Pemberton Hiking Trail is an easy, beautiful hike. The hills are covered in granite boulders and the tail has a great flow for mountain biking or gravel bike riding.
Gateway Trail Loop
Gateway Trail Loop is one of the most popular trails in Scottsdale. Ideal for tranquil walks through the desert, perfect for families and couples looking for a romantic day trip.
As outlined in this list, Scottsdale is the premier destination for hiking, biking, and just an all-around perfect day outdoors! If you are looking to amp up the adventure, consider hiking one of these trails at nightfall. Just make sure to have some night vision goggles in tow. No matter which trails you choose, you are bound to have an amazing adventure!