Arizona is well-known for its stunning deserts, scenic paths and breathtaking views. However, many of the state’s most popular hikes can often become overcrowded, especially during the peak time of the day before it gets too hot. Crowded hikes can mean minimal parking or can make the trails seem more busy and congested rather than relaxing. Want to avoid the crowds? There are a variety of great places to hike in Phoenix and throughout the Valley that are lesser-known but are still just as beautiful. Here is a list of P.B. Bell’s top hidden hikes in Arizona:
If you’re looking for a relatively easy hike with lots of classic desert vegetation and wildlife, look no further than the Dreamy Draw Nature Trail. This lesser-known hike in Phoenix is only 1.5 miles and offers a quick and easy activity for the whole family — plus it allows everyone to get out and enjoy the great outdoors. To top it off, if you go in the springtime, you will likely wander through patches of beautiful wildflowers but year round the hike offers views of the iconic Piestewa Peak — views you don’t want to miss.
If you live in the Valley and are looking for quiet hikes near you, the Dixie Mine Trail located at the McDowell Mountain Regional Park is a perfect spot to spend the day. Although this park is popular, the Dixie Mine Trail is one of the less-traveled options if you are on the hunt for a more secluded adventure. This moderate trail’s elevation gain makes for a great workout, whether you’re hiking or biking. The six mile trail features a variety of colorful vegetation, desert wildlife and even petroglyphs.
For those who want the panoramic views of the Sedona red rocks without the busy crowds, head over to the 2.3 mile loop Baldwin Trail! This scenic hidden hike in Arizona offers a well-marked trail and gives you stunning views of the famous Cathedral Rock, as well as passes through Oak Creek, so if you’re in the mood to splash around, be sure to make a stop by the water to dip your toes in.
Located at Bartlett Lake, the Palo Verde Trail is a perfect hidden hike to beat the Arizona heat. The trail partially wanders along the shoreline, highlighting several coves along the way. The hike is roughly 7.4 miles roundtrip but there are a variety of cacti, wildflowers and wildlife to spot throughout your journey so you will have plenty of new sites to see on your adventure.
While Camelback Mountain and the Superstitions can offer some great hiking options in the Valley, sometimes the lesser-known and hidden hikes will surprise you! If none of these suggestions spark your interest, try Googling “quiet hikes near me” to find some new recommendations in your area. You might find your new favorite hike!
We’d love to follow you on your hiking adventures! Be sure to tag @PBBellapts in your photos so we can explore the state with you.