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Camelback Mountain: Cholla Trail Professional Review and Guide
"Fewer fellow hikers and a complete lack of mountain bikers make the Alta Trail inviting to those who prefer to hike undisturbed in South Mountain Park. Alta Trail is the most challenging trail in the park. The Bajada Trail and the tail end of the National Trail complete an enjoyable loop."
--Charles Liu, 60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Phoenix (Menasha Ridge Press).
Great hike right in the middle of Scottsdale, Az. We got an early start & were thankful for it as it got hot closer to midmorning as well as the number of people hiking up grew as the day went on. First half of the hike is some simple switchbacks up the side of the mountain with lots of great views/picture taking opportunities. Second half of trail is pretty much UP the side of the mountain with lots of climbing on & around rocks. The view from the top is worth the hike as you get a 360 view of the entire valley. Saw all ages on the trail from young kids to the wisest amongst us. Most made it to the top.
Tips: start early, bring lots of water & practice the parking as it is on the street about 1/2 mile away from trail head
Great hike. As an out-of-towner it was a very nice hike. Get there early because the trail gets busy around 11am. Also the last 20 percent of the trail is the strenuous part, don't be intimidated, it isn't that bad. The saddle also offers some great views, but the peak is spectacular. This is a great urban peak.
Great trail. Bring lots of water, my friend started feeling nauseous and threw up halfway up. This trail is a great workout but can be quite crowded.
Great trail, great workout and awesome views! Not a trail for beginners though and bring lots of water with you as it gets hot when the sun comes up.
The only down side is the difficult access to the trail from this side. No parking and if you street park past a certain time they ticket you. If they have a trail entrance, they should look at some options for people.
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