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Trails

Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve offers an array of fabulous desert trails and award-winning facilities. The Preserve is unique geologically and home to stunning geography, lush cacti forests and diverse wildlife. Now is a great time to explore the 30,580 acres of Sonoran Desert. Choose from any of the major trailheads listed below to connect to more than 225+ miles of trails of Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve.

BROWN’S RANCH TRAILHEAD - 30301 N. Alma School Rd. Scottsdale, AZ 85262

       

Directions
Located approximately 1.25 miles north of the intersection of Alma School Rd and Dynamite Blvd. 

Overview
This trailhead features interpretive exhibits about the human history of the Preserve and serves as the major access point to the vast network of trails in the area. It provides access to such unique destinations as Granite Mountain, Cholla Mountain, Brown’s Mountain, Balanced Rock and Cathedral Rock.

Landscape
Wide variety of trails for Hiking, Biking and Equestrians. Crushed granite terrain with generally smooth, rolling trails and historic ranching era artifacts.

Amenities

Parking, restrooms, shade ramadas, interpretive signage, water.

 

FRAESFIELD TRAILHEAD - 13400 East Rio Verde Dr. Scottsdale, AZ 85262

 

Directions
Take Pima Road north to Dynamite, turn right (east) on Dynamite, and continue about 6 miles to 134thStreet, the trailhead is on your left.

Overview
Offering access to a variety of easy to moderate scenic trails in the Preserve’s northern area, this trailhead provides plenty of parking for hikers and mountain bikers, as well as an equestrian staging area.

Landscape
Moderate trails for all activities with generally flatter, smooth, rolling trails popular with equestrians.

Amenities
Car and horse trailer parking, restrooms, shade ramada, interpretive and orientation signs, no drinking water.

 

GRANITE MOUNTAIN TRAILHEAD - 31402 N. 136th St., Scottsdale, AZ 85262

Directions
From Pima north to Dynamite, right (east) on Dynamite, about 6 miles to 136th Street, left (north) on 136th about 2 miles to Lone Mountain (where the power lines cross over 136th), turn left (west) into access area.

Overview
This trailhead provides access to pristine areas in the Preserve’s northern region around Granite Mountain. Ample parking is available as well as an equestrian staging area. There is no water and no restrooms.

Landscape
Wide variety of trails for Hiking, Biking and Equestrians. Crushed granite terrain with dramatic rock formations and amazing saguaro fields.

Amenities
Car and horse trailer parking, restrooms, shade ramada, interpretive and orientation signs, no drinking water

 

PIMA-DYNAMITE TRAILHEAD - 28777 N Pima Rd. Scottsdale, AZ 85262

Directions
Located at Northeast corner of N. Pima Rd. and E. Dynamite Blvd (Enter off of Dynamite only)

Landscape
Wide variety of trails for Hiking, Biking and Equestrians.

Amenities
Gravel parking, maps, portable restroom, no drinking water