Hike Piestewa Peak

Arizona Piestewa Peak

Added by Kevin Kaminski

  • 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
Read More

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More



Hiking, Photography, Running

Skill Level:



Year Round



Easy Parking
Family Friendly

Are we missing something?

Suggest an edit

How to Get There

9 days ago

Amazing views & challenging hike - lots of people!

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!

9 days ago

2 months ago

Decent hike

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.

2 months ago

3 months ago

Favorite night hike location!

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!

3 months ago

6 months ago

Great Hike But Busy

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

6 months ago

10 months ago

Great Hiking

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

10 months ago

11 months ago

Local Favorite

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.

11 months ago

Added by Kevin Kaminski

It is my goal to build a life I don’t need a vacation from.” I am an architecture photographer based in Phoenix, Arizona, and my current job takes me around the world to photograph hotels and resorts. While I love having the opportunity to travel and experience differen

More Adventures Nearby

Hike the Apache Wash Loop Trail

Arizona / Apache Wash Trailhead

This hike begins at the Apache Wash Trailhead where you will find restrooms and a covered rest area.

Dan Deublein
2 Saves

Hike the Abineau-Bear Jaw Loop

Arizona / Abineau-Bear Jaw loop

This trail is slightly more hidden on the northern slope of the San Francisco Peaks, but well worth the drive just outside of Flagstaff.

Kevin Kaminski
47 Saves

Camp At Waheap Campground

Arizona / Wahweap RV Campground

This modern campground is just steps from the beach and centrally located on the Arizona / Utah border -- perfect for exploring both sides of the Glen Canyon National Recreational Area.

Kelly Park
5 Saves