Pinnacle Peak Park: An Easy Hike and Pretty Views in Scottsdale, Arizona

oheyo
Kristina Q. @oheyoa month ago · 4 min read
TravelFeed

There’s more to Scottsdale, Arizona than golf courses and fancy spas!

As an East Coast girl, I’m super easily impressed by cactuses and other desert plants in their natural habitat. I’m also a fan of afternoon hikes, so I’m not surprised that Pinnacle Peak Park left me wide-eyed with delight at every turn.

Hiking Pinnacle Peak

At just 1.75 miles long, the out-and-back main trail at Pinnacle Peak Park offers the weekend wanderer a quick but satisfying taste of a hike in the Sonoran Desert without having to venture far from Scottsdale proper. If you’re in the Phoenix area for just a short time, you can get an afternoon’s worth of Southwestern outdoor eye candy here. (Hey there, fellow business traveler!) Yup— you can get that Wild West fix of majestic Saguaro cactuses and rock formations without that drive all the way to Sedona.

The park’s facilities and trails are impeccably maintained, with well-defined trail markers and informational displays all along the way. At the peak, you’ll be taking in 360 degrees of breathtaking views from nearly 2900 feet.

Getting there

Pinnacle Peak Park sits about a half-hour drive away from Old Town Scottsdale, give or take up to 20 more minutes from points in Phoenix or Mesa.

Google Maps
Google Maps

Note that if you drive here, you’ll need to double back to the parking lot once you hit the end of the trail, making this jaunt 3.5 miles in total. As visitors sans-rental car, our rideshare dropped us off at the main entrance and parking lot, and then we called for a Lyft at the end of the trail. The area at the end of the trail was relatively deserted, and it’s worth noting that we had a couple of drivers cancel on us once they saw how out of the way the pickup point was.

Splendor (near) the city

This gorgeous protected area is flanked on all sides by privately owned property, punctuating the skyline with dabs of built-into-the-cliffs luxury architecture and manufactured greenery. But this won’t take away from your experience.

Just look up and out onto the golden Arizona horizon— it’s a beautiful sight.


New to hiking?

Check out these common-sense hiking tips I posted with one of my Instagram posts about Pinnacle Peak Park.

1️⃣ Will it be sunny? Slather on the SPF— the higher, the better! Wear a hat, too, while you’re at it. A little bug spray doesn’t hurt, either. Addendum: you ought to wear sunscreen even when the sky is cloudy!

2️⃣ Wear comfortable hiking shoes or sneakers with good traction. (And wear thick socks— preferably wool or some other moisture-wicking fiber!)

3️⃣ Bring water. Like lots of it— as much as you can comfortably carry in your backpack or on your person.

4️⃣ Hike with a buddy whenever possible! If you are on a particularly long or less-traveled trail, always make sure someone not on the hike with you knows where you’ll be, and when you expect to be back.

5️⃣ LEAVE. NO. TRACE. Take nothing but pictures, y’all. And if you can, #PickUpOne (piece of trash, that is).


Heads Up

This post is syndicated from my travel blog, Aspire to Wander. You can read the original article and see more photos here: Pinnacle Peak Park: An Easy Hike and Pretty Views in Scottsdale, Arizona


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Comments

I can't believe how crips the air is .… I just had a friend move to Arizona and will be visiting her next year!


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@for91days I am definitely looking forward to all the amazing shots you'll get while you're there! If you've already started planning, do you know where yet in Arizona will you be visiting?


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@oheyo. This was so fun to see Arizona highlighted so beautifully. I have not climbed Pinnacle Peak, I'll have to put it on my list. You got some beautiful pictures!


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@sjarvie5 Thank you so much! That means a lot coming from a Phoenix-area native. It was on the short-and-sweet side, as far as hikes go, so as long as you don't mind some slight thigh-burning, it'll be great!


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adalger
adalger @adalgera month ago

What a beautiful tour and very nice pictures ^^ .. I am always astonished when I see maps from america .. the steets are always so straight ordered, as if someone draw them with a ruler ! .. I can not ever imagine something like that in europe, it so chaotic here ^^


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Thank you, @adalger! :)

I've genuinely never thought much about how much we like our grids here until my son of all people mentioned this same thing to me the other day.

Honestly, I'm fine with grids— keeps me from getting lost while driving 😅


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