The QiRanger Adventures

Peralta Trail

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The Start

The Start

Quite possibly one of the most traveled trails in the Phoenix, Arizona area is the Peralta. I can remember when traveling to the trail head required driving east on the US-60, past Gold Canyon and then turning on a dirt road several miles into Tonto National Forest. For the most part, that remains the same, but the area right off the freeway is full of housing developments and schools. Once you pass them, you take an easy drive through 7 miles of dirt road.

Trail Head

Trail Head

It’s a straight in-and-out hike with a slight incline that gets a little steeper at the end. The total distance is just shy of 5 miles and can take anywhere between 1.5 and 2 hours to get to the Freemont Saddle (turning point). This brings the total hiking time between 3 and 4 hours for the entire journey. If you’re looking for a more challenging hike, never fear, the Peralta Trail connects with others in the Superstition Wilderness Area, providing ample hiking and camping for those wanting to explore the desert. I’ve had the pleasure of hiking this trail a number of times (on both sides), but never in one go.

When hiking the trail in the spring, the Peralta Canyon is filled with beautiful wild flowers. Our hike didn’t have any of those, but we did have some great views. There truly is something special about the desert. The century plants, cacti, sandstone, etc. complement one another in a magnificent way, that can only be experienced by being there.

Going up...

Going up...

Peralta Canyon

Peralta Canyon

One of the best things about the hike, is that you’re never out of breath while going up (or coming down). So when hiking with friends, it allows the party to talk along the way. Even with this being the case, make sure to bring food and plenty of water, since there’s little shade along the way and you’ll be in direct sunlight. Also keep in mind, this is the desert, so it is inadvisable to hike the trail during the summer months, as it will be incredibly hot and not safe.

Your final destination on this abbreviated hike is a beautiful little saddle offering views of Weaver’s Needle.

Weavers Needle

Weaver's Needle

When you get to the top, take a short break and have a snack. Then get together with your crew and start heading down. To see more of pictures from our hike, check out the album.

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Written by Steve Miller

April 28, 2009 at 6:00 am

Posted in Arizona, Exercise, Fun, Hiking, Travel

Tagged with , , , ,

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