Elephant Mountain Trail

Cave Creek, Arizona 85327

Elephant Mountain Trail

Elephant Mountain Trail Professional Review and Guide

"The relatively new Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area is the scene of a beautiful hike through undisturbed desert in the shadow of Elephant Mountain. Hiking this trail might make you think you’re the first to discover the scenery—and that wouldn’t be too far from the truth.

One of the newer additions to Maricopa County’s park system, Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area clearly shows its raw charm. Upon arrival, you immediately get the sense that this hike is going to be a rugged adventure. Crossing the park boundary on foot, using a self-pay drop box, and seeing portable toilets and a portable office all add to that perception."

Elephant Mountain Trail Reviews

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4/24/2010
I had an amazing time on this trail today. The weather was perfect and all of the plants were in bloom. There were more changes to flora and scenery in one hike than I've ever seen on an Arizona trail. We took a rather strange path in order to see as much as possible which resulted in a 4 hour hike. The Elephant Mountain portion of the trails does seem to be the most challenging portion of the park.
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8/17/2008
This was an exhilarating day. Reaching the top of the butte and seeing the ancient walls is doubly rewarding.
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4/5/2008
A beautiful area of North Phoenix. Lots of different trails to hike and enjoy.
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1/21/2008
Nice trail. 7.25 miles with some fairly calm hills. Views were great, especially from the saddle.
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12/2/2007
We did this hike last Sunday following 2 straight days of rain. Cave Creek was up, and had to be waded, which forced the jean and tennis shoe crowd back to the parking lot. The water was cold, but did manage to ensure that we would not see another soul, or a single footprint in the 2-6 inches of mud that covered most of the trail during our hike. We hiked the Elephant Mountain trail to the saddle, then down to the Spur Cross Trail, which we took back to the trailhead for a 7 mile loop. (The book suggests an out-and-back on the Elephant). The trail was a great alternative to those in the Cave Creek area further south, and although faint in some places, easy enough to navigate. The heavy rains had knocked a lot of cholla balls onto the south-facing parts of the trail, which the dogs managed to step on several times, but they were easily enough detached with a pocket knife. This was a great hike so close to Phoenix, highly recommended.
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Elephant Mountain Trail Photos

Trail Information

Cave Creek
Nearby City
9
Distance
805 feet
Elevation Gain
Out-and-back
Trail Type
Moderate
Skill Level
4.5 hours
Duration
Park open 6 a.m.–8 p.m. (until 10 p.m. Friday–Saturday); trails close at sunset
Season
2,345 feet
Trailhead Elevation
3,150 feet
Top Elevation
USGS New River Mesa; maricopacountyparks.net/maps
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Nov 2018