10919 S. Central Ave., 85042
Map to the main entrance
Pima Canyon Entrance:
9904 S. 48th St., 85044
Map to the Pima Canyon entrance
Ranger Office Phone: (602) 262-7393
Hours for all trailhead areas and entrances: 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. (entrance gates close). Trails remain open until 11 p.m.
Get a video portrait of South Mountain in this Emmy Award Winning Video on the preserve.
At more than 16,000 acres, South Mountain Park/Preserve is the largest municipal park in the country, according to the Trust for Public Land. It boasts 51 miles of primary trails for horseback riding, hiking and mountain biking for all ability levels. From the park's main entrance, you can drive up the Summit Road 5.5 miles to Dobbins Lookout and spectacular valleywide views or you can continue to the Gila Lookout for a view of the Gila River Valley. This scenic road is shared by bikers and hikers and there are many steep sections and blind curves, so maximum speed is 25 mph and just 15 mph on curves.
Silent Sundays/San Juan Road Access :
For each monthly Silent Sunday event, (generally the fourth Sunday of each month), the park’s main access roadways are closed to motor vehicles, reserving them for the entire day for non-motorized uses. 2013 Silent Sunday dates are: March 24, April 28, May 26, June 23, July 28, Aug. 25, Sept. 22, Oct. 27, Nov. 24 and Dec 22.
San Juan Road is open to vehicles the first full weekend of every month for easy access to the Alta, Bajada and National trails. The road is closed to motor vehicles all other times. Open weekend dates in 2013 are: March 2- 3; April 6-7, Mary 4-5, June 1-2, July 6-7, Aug. 3-4, Sept. 7-8, Oct. 5-6, Nov. 2-3 and Dec. 7-8.
Known Road Closures for 2013:
April 26: Moonlight Over the Mountain TBD possible date change Road closed from Front Gate 1 p.m. to closing
May 11: Time Trials Bike Event Closure at 1.0 mile marker - 4 to 11:30 a.m.- Periodic access for bikers to San Juan Road during this closure.
Aug. 11: ARR Summer Series Race Closure at Front Gate 4 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. - No access to San Juan Road
Park/Preserve Improvement Projects:
Work near the Beverly Canyon Trail requires a temporary detour of the trail. Find details on the Beverly Canyon area trail detour map.
For information about South Mountain improvement projects, call the main park ranger office at (602) 262-7393.
The history of South Mountain Park/Preserve as a city park dates back to 1924. Prominent local citizens, with the help of Sen. Carl Hayden, bought 13,000 acres from the federal government for $17,000. In 1935 the National Park Service developed a master plan for the park with riding and hiking trails, picnic areas and overlooks, all in rustic regional character. The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) built many of the facilities in the park, based on this master plan. Visitation at the park has gone from 3,000 a month in 1924 to an estimated three million a year today.
Mount Suppoa (not accessible to the public) reaches 2,690 feet. Dobbins Lookout, at 2,330 feet, is the highest point in the park accessible by trail or public roadway.
Geology, Flora and Fauna
It is important to remember that the Phoenix mountain preserves are open, undeveloped desert areas. Please use care when heading out as hikers can encounter rocky terrain, rattlesnakes and other potential hazards native to the Sonoran Desert. If you encounter a rattlesnake, allow it space and time to escape. South Mountain Park/Preserve actually consists of three mountain ranges, the Ma Ha Tauk, Gila and Guadalupe. They stretch diagonally from northeast to southwest. Diagonal mountain ranges that protrude from desert floors, like those of South Mountain, are typical features of the Sonoran Desert. Various minerals were mined in the park in the early 1900s before its birth as a park.
If you would like to be on the “Friends of South Mountain Park” mailing list, please contact us at email@example.com with the following information: Last name, first name, e-mail address. If you would prefer; call (602) 262-7393 or (602) 262-6713 (tty) with your information.
Read South Mountain Newsletter:
RangerGlyphs: New Year - New Resolutions!
RangerGlyphs: What's in a name?
RangerGlyphs: Don't be a trailblazer!
RangerGlyphs: Pack it in/Pack it out
RangerGlyphs: Leave No Trace
RangerGlyphs: Meet the Caretakers of South Mountain Park