Waterfall Trail

White Tank Mountain Regional Park, Arizona

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Waterfall Trail is a hiking trail in Maricopa County, Arizona. It is within White Tank Mountain Regional Park. It is a mile long and begins at 1,516 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is two miles with a total elevation gain of 595 feet. Near the trailhead there is parking.
Distance: mi Elevation: ft
Waterfall Trail is a hiking trail in Maricopa County, Arizona. It is within White Tank Mountain Regional Park. It is a mile long and begins at 1,516 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is two miles with a total elevation gain of 595 feet. Near the trailhead there is parking.
Activity Type: Hiking, Trail Running, Walking
Nearby City: White Tank Mountain Regional Park
Distance: 1.0
Elevation Gain: 595 feet
Trailhead Elevation: 1,516 feet
Top Elevation: 1,929 feet
Driving Directions: Directions to Waterfall Trail
Parks: White Tank Mountain Regional Park
Elevation Min/Max: 1516/1929 ft
Elevation Start/End: 1516/1516 ft

Waterfall Trail Professional Reviews and Guides

"The hidden, ephemeral waterfall at the end of Waterfall Canyon Trail is both a treat and a tease to desert dwellers. Drawn in by the promise of water in an otherwise sizzling clime, hikers and dogs alike enjoy Waterfall Canyon’s frequent shady spots thanks to gargantuan, lichen-clad boulders and desert trees. The trail’s end is the real reward for your dog, though: sheer cliffs cast welcome shadows on three sides of this natural grotto.

Enough water for your dog to cool her pads is commonly found at the bottom of the 80-foot-high waterfall even weeks after the rains have left the Sonoran Desert behind. The hum and flutter of native bees and tarantula hawks add to the pleasant ambiance of this desert oasis. Once your dog is leashed and watered—pack in plenty for both of you since the waterfall flows heavily only after a hard rain—you are ready to set out on this short but scenic Sonoran Desert hike."

"You won’t find any prehistoric pueblos or cliff dwellings in Waterfall Canyon, but this cactus-covered patch of desert in the White Tank Mountains contains enough ancient rock art to make it a worthwhile destination. The trail leading into Waterfall Canyon passes through the site of a village that, according to a 1963 report by archaeologist Alfred E. Johnson, covered 75 acres when it was occupied by the Hohokam between A.D. 500 and 900. No walls or other major features of the village have survived to this day, but all along the trail you can see boulders covered with petroglyphs.

One of the more impressive petroglyph panels, located on a large rock on the north side of the trail only ten minutes into the hike, includes a sun, a stick figure, something resembling a garden rake, an image formed by two perpendicular zigzag lines and other drawings. The sun and stick figure seem straightforward, but one can only guess what the other pictures represent. The rake design appears at many petroglyph sites, and some archaeologists believe it may represent a net or fence used to divert and capture game. The zigzag lines, located immediately left of the rake, may represent snakes or, perhaps, squash vines."

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May 2018