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Hayden Butte Preserve and Tempe Town Lake Professional Review and Guide
"This scenic route showcases the best hotspots in downtown Tempe, a city known for its ties to Arizona State University. Though not entirely a hiking trail, this tour visits a mountain preserve, wanders through a lakeside park, and hits a trendy business district.The recently constructed Tempe Town Lake turned the drab and dry Salt River bed near downtown Tempe into a beautiful park for a multitude of recreational opportunities."
--Charles Liu, 60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Phoenix (Menasha Ridge Press).
I started on the West end because the lookout is closed most of the time and I knew that when it's open, it would be crowded. There's no shade cover to speak of so it's a good Winter hike. A good workout for a day. It took me 8hrs but I took a long break in the middle at the lookout. The scenery changes from the East Mountain. I found it nicer but more crowded. I parked at the East end and was dropped off at the residential area on the West end at 43rd Ave. and Estrella. I wouldn't park there. It seems safe but your car is pretty exposed. Nice scenery and a good 15.5mi workout.
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