Caption: The summit trail, pictured here, is closed for renovation and rebuilding through the end of 2013.
It is now hot-weather season in the Phoenix desert preserves, which requires extra care and precautions. Waiting for shady parts of the day to hike, bringing ample water, wearing full-cover loose fitting clothing and staying off trails altogether during heat advisories are among the necessities of safe warm-season hiking. Please review our trail safety guidelines for additional safe-hiking tips.
- Camelback Mountain simple map
- Camelback Mountain detailed map
- Camelback Mountain printable tri-fold map
The symbols to the left of each trail name represent difficulty ratings. Click on any icon to see full descriptions of the rating categories.
The Echo Canyon Summit Trail and trailhead are closed through the end of 2013 for improvements.
Get project details and follow its progress on the Camelback improvement webpage or call (480) 281-1506.
It is important to remember that the Phoenix mountain preserves are open, undeveloped desert areas. Please use care when heading out as hikers routinely encounter rocky terrain, rattlesnakes and other potential hazards native to the Sonoran Desert. Check out safety tips for a full list of ways to enjoy your outing.
Because it gains elevation over a longer distance, the Cholla Trail is slightly less steep than the Echo Canyon Summit Trail and tends to follow the "backbone" or ridge of Camelback Mountain. It is still extremely difficult and is recommended only for people capable of intense physical activity. This trail offers little shade but decent views of several golf courses that ring the base of the mountain. Hikers can expect a steady climb with short steep sections of trail and, near the top, a fairly exposed section of ridge hiking. No other designated trails disembark off the Cholla Trail; this trail eventually joins the Echo Canyon Summit Trail at the summit of Camelback Mountain. Please review the hiking map for details on parking for the Cholla Trail. You can find additional details on this trail on the Cholla trail webpage.
Length: 1.6 miles one way
Time: 45 minutes to ascend and 45 minutes to descend
Elevation: Elevation gain from trailhead is around 1200