McDowell Mountain Regional Park just might be the crown jewel of the grand regional park system of Maricopa County. Located on the eastern slopes of the McDowell Mountains in the lower Verde River basin, this desert park is a wonderful place to spend a spring day for hikers, mountain bikers, horseback riders, picnickers and even campers.
McDowell Mountain Regional Park encompasses 21,099-acres of virgin Sonoran Desert vegetation with wide desert washes and a terrain of small hills and rugged ridges. Visitors are treated to spectacular views of the Verde River Valley and the many surrounding mountain ranges including Four Peaks and the majestic Superstition Mountains. Watching a full moon rise over the Superstition Mountains and the Verde River Valley from the park’s picnic area is one great and memorable Arizona experiences.
McDowell Mountain Park has over 50 miles of multi-use trails. The trails range in length from the .5 miles Hilltop Trail to the 15.3-mile Pemberton Trail. For people new to the park, the 3.1-mile North Trail is an ideal trail to first travel to get to know and experience the park’s environment.
For mountain bike enthusiasts, McDowell Mountain Park is home to 3 loops of competitive tracks totaling 15 miles in length. The tracks are a mountain biker’s dream with swooping turns, steep inclines, technical descents and rugged, desert terrain. Difficulty of the three loops is rated from expert to intermediate to average beginner.
Picnicking is a popular activity at McDowell Mountain Park especially during the springtime in Arizona. A family and group camping area as well as RV accommodations are all a part of the outdoor experience that can be enjoyed in the park. Camping fees do apply; check the park’s website for details. For horse lovers, a wonderful horse staging area is available for those who want to explo
re the park while sitting in a saddle.
Springtime also brings out the local rattlesnakes, so keep a sharp eye out for those desert critters that sometime like to sun on the trails. Restrooms and running water are available at the trailheads but be sure to plan to carry plenty of water with you as you get out and discover for yourself this wonderful Maricopa County Park.
|Great picnic areas|
|Weavers Needle in the Superstition Mountains|