Guidebook

6 Mellow Desert Hikes in the Phoenix Metro Area

Experience the beauty of the Sonoran Desert on these mellow hikes.

Description

"Phoenix lies in Arizona's Valley of the Sun, where a huge metro area bathes in sunshine and warmth year-round," writes adventure travel writer Jesse Weber. "The climate is part of the attraction for millions of residents, and the backdrop to the city skyline is a ring of rugged mountains."

While the rugged mountains and harsh desert environment are home to a wide array of arduous hikes, you can also enjoy the beauty of the Sonoran Desert without pushing yourself to the limit. If you want to drink in the beauty of the desert without brutalizing your body on the region's more difficult hikes, consider one of the six selections in this guidebook.

The ever-popular South Mountain Trail System is well-represented in this guidebook with three different hikes—The Corona Loop, a short loop from the Pima Canyon Trailhead, and Fat Man's Pass higher in the hills.

If you want to head further afield, consider the Black Rock Loop to the west in White Tank Mountain Regional Park, or the Goldmine Trail in San Tan Mountain Regional Park to the south.

Finally, if you want to temper the arid desert with a refreshing swim, head to the Pipeline Canyon Trail north of town.

The Corona Loop

The Corona Loop

1 - 2 hrs
5.8 km
71 m
71 m
An easy, scenic hike in the South Mountain trail system.
Moderate
Private
Pima East & West Loops
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP’s Editorial team.

Pima East & West Loops

0 - 1 hrs
4.3 km
82 m
82 m
A short hike originating from the Pima Canyon Trailhead.
Moderate
Private
Fat Man's Pass via National Trail
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP’s Editorial team.

Fat Man's Pass via National Trail

1 - 2 hrs
5.5 km
138 m
138 m
Hike through mountaintop saguaro forest to a natural playground of boulders.
Moderate
Private
Black Rock Loop & Waterfall Trail
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP’s Editorial team.

Black Rock Loop & Waterfall Trail

0 - 1 hrs
3.7 km
58 m
57 m
A family-friendly hike in White Tank Regional Park with ancient petroglyphs and a rock waterfall.
Moderate
Private
Goldmine Trail Viewpoint

Goldmine Trail Viewpoint

1 - 2 hrs
5.1 km
148 m
148 m
A delightful out-and-back hike to a scenic overlook in the San Tan Mountains.
Moderate
Private
Pipeline Canyon Trail to Yavapai Point
The best Routes on FATMAP, hand-picked by FATMAP’s Editorial team.

Pipeline Canyon Trail to Yavapai Point

1 - 2 hrs
7.7 km
211 m
211 m
Desert hike with a swimming spot and big vistas in the hills around Lake Pleasant.
Moderate
Private