• Activities:

    Photography, Running, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Year Round

Bathrooms
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Scenic

Distance: 2.4 miles round trip. Elevation Gain: 1180 ft. Duration: 1.5 hours. Type of Trail: Out and back. Reasons to go: To get in a quick workout, enjoy awesome views of the city, or watch a beautiful sunset.

Piestewa Peak, formerly known as Squaw Peak and conveniently located in the heart of the Phoenix metropolitan area, is a relatively short hike that yields impressive views of the city and is a perfect spot to watch the sunset. Piestewa Peak is a popular spot for locals who do not want to drive or hike for hours to fit in a good workout, so be prepared to encounter some crowds if you visit on a weekend. The trail is well-maintained and has several benches along the way for hikers to take a breather and enjoy the views.

The trail is mostly switchbacks to the top and is very easy to follow. After hiking for approximately half a mile, the trail intersects with a circumference trail to the left; to continue to the summit, stay right at this junction. The trail will continue to switchback up the mountain, flattening out in a few spots, and becoming much steeper for the last quarter of a mile. Once reaching the summit, you will be rewarded with 360 degree views of Phoenix. This is a perfect sunset hike, if you don’t mind descending the mountain at dusk. If you hike in the evening, be sure to arrive at the trailhead before sunset, when the gates to the parking lot close. Allow at least an hour to get to the top, and bring your camera for some epic Arizonan sunset shots!

Pack List

  • At Least 1.5L of water
  • Snacks
  • Camera
  • Sunblock
  • Sun Glasses
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Reviews

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This place has the one of the best views you can access in the city. I’d highly recommend hiking this mountain any day. Especially at night!!

2 months ago
2 months ago

This trail is very difficult but it is amazing. I highly recommend for cardio. Great city views

5 months ago
5 months ago

My first time visiting Phoenix I stayed at the Biltmore. Being that I was here for work I didn't have much time for sight seeing or long adventures. But this is in the middle of everything - seriously 5-10 min from anywhere! It was literally a mile away from my hotel. I was surprised at how busy it was for a Thursday morning. Lots of traffic. Not very rustic - lots of man-made steps along the way which was a bit disappointing. But the elevation gain is steep. It's not long, it's not super high, but it's steep! And the views at the top are just awesome! Take a moment at the summit to reflect...and then haul tail downhill!

6 months ago
6 months ago

It's not overwhelming difficult, but the peak makes you feel on top of the world. Perfect early morning or evening hike. But please, if you go bring your trash down with you. There's quite a lot of trash in certain spots near the peak. If i ever return to the area I'm hiking up with a trash bag.

9 months ago
9 months ago

Do this one in the morning and get to the summit for sunrise. Such a quick, fun workout to start the day.

about 1 year ago
about 1 year ago

Definitely a nice short hike for a good view of Phoenix. Very very crowded.

about 1 year ago
about 1 year ago

My husband and I ventured to Piestewa Peak on a Sunday morning and had a hard time finding a parking spot, even though we arrived at 6am. So, getting there EARLY really is key for this popular hike! This hike is somewhat short but relatively difficult if you aren't in decent shape. However, there are many wide spots on the trail and a few benches along the way to stop at for rests. The views of the city are spectacular, so it's worth the sweat!

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

Good trail for some exercise that takes you to the highest point in the east valley. As of July 1st of 2016 dogs are no longer allowed on trail because so few people pick up after their animals, so you'll have to find somewhere else if you're looking to bring your furry friend. Be careful in the summer heat.

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

This is definitely my favorite (legal) night hike location! Even though the entry gate closes at sunset, there is a parking lot outside the gate that is open well after dark. Especially in the summer, this allows for some evening hiking time after the sun has set. Be sure to bring a good head lamp and/or flashlight along!

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

Busy hike but indeed a great workout. Once you get to the summit you can relax and watch the sun rise or sun set.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

Its a great place for beginners and avid hikers. Many different options.

about 2 years ago
about 2 years ago

I hike this trail 3-4x a week after work. Lots of locals, please yield to hikers coming up the mountain as many newbies do not know that. It is a step climb in a short distance ( 1.2 miles each way on my tracker ). The trail is used often and well maintained, so navigation is not difficult. Enjoy and hike smart, bring enough water folks.

about 2 years ago
about 2 years ago

Kevin Kaminski Explorer

My goal is to build a life I don’t need a vacation from! I'm an Architecture Photographer based in Phoenix, and my current job takes me around the world to photograph hotels & resorts. My real passion, however, is outdoor recreation and adventure photography.

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