If a steep climb in the middle of the Phoenix area to great metropolitan views gets your heart pumping, this hike is for you.
*** On January 28th, 2013, the Echo Canyon trail closed for renovation. Primarily, the reason for the closure is to widen the parking lot and allow more hikers easier access to the trailhead in the future. No date has been set for reopening the trail, but the estimate is Fall of 2013. During the closure there is no access to the Echo Canyon trail from any direction. The Cholla Trail will remain open during this time. ***
This urban hike is convenient for those of us that don't have the time to leave the valley for a longer hike... we still get our hiking fix fulfilled from this one. This well marked trail climbs steadily to the top of Camelback Mountain. Some fun scrambling in several places. Once you reach the top, sit back, relax and enjoy the views of the beautiful people living on the mountain. How many swimming pools can you count? There's water at the trailhead, but make sure you bring plenty with you on your hike.
ALTERNATE ROUTE [Cholla Trail]
The Cholla Trail is less steep and a bit longer (3.5 miles round trip) than the summit trail. From the trailhead, there are excellent views of the Phoenician resort as well as some of the finer houses and resorts surrounding the mountain. As you climb, views abound from right and left. The trail is well marked for the first 1.5 miles. The last 0.25 miles require some scrambling. Follow the blue paint dots and yellow reflectors on the rock to stay on the route.