Hiking Pinnacle Peak in Scottsdale, Arizona

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Pinnacle Peak in Scottsdale, Arizona is the focal point in Pinnacle Peak Park. From afar the summit of the peak looks far more challenging than it does up close but you do need to be a rock climber to get to the top of it. Hikers must be content with a 3.5 mile round trip hike with an elevation gain of approximately 1300 feet.

John and I set out in late December to explore Pinnacle Peak Park. It’s located in northeast Scottsdale, east of North Pima Road, and south of Dynamite Boulevard. It was a busy time but nothing compared to our Christmas Day Camelback Mountain hike.

Although there is a gain of 1300 feet, none of it happens at once so it’s actually quite an easy hike. The trails are wide and the views out to the valley are excellent. The granite rock is reminiscent of Bedrock – home to Wilma and Fred Flintstone, and the rock seen in Joshua Tree National Park.

We only saw birds on our hike – hummingbirds and cactus wrens. Other animals that call the park home include gila monsters, bobcats, javelinas, mule deer, grey foxes and the western diamondback rattlesnake.

The trail is open from 6:45 am until 6 pm. It’s well worth doing if you visit Scottsdale – and catching a sunrise or sunset up would be magnificent.

"The start of the trail to Pinnacle Peak"

The start of the trail to Pinnacle Peak

"One of the hummingbirds we saw on the hike"

One of the hummingbirds we saw on the hike

"The grade is never onerous"

The grade is never onerous

"The boulders come in all shapes and sizes on the Pinnacle Peak hike"

The boulders come in all shapes and sizes

"The boulders are reminiscent of what you see in Joshua Tree National Park"

The boulders are reminiscent of what you see in Joshua Tree National Park

"A well developed neighbourhood surrounds most of the park"

A well developed neighbourhood surrounds most of the park

"Looking at the top of Pinnacle Peak"

Looking at the top of Pinnacle Peak

"warm  weather hiking Pinnacle Peak"

Enjoying the short sleeve weather in late December

"These cholla cactus always look backlit"

These cholla cactus always look backlit

"The backside of Pinnacle Peak"

The backside of Pinnacle Peak

"The highest point on the trail"

The highest point on the trail

"Looking up at the saguro cactus"

Looking up at the saguaro cactus

"A multi-limbed saguro seen at the bottom of the trail"

A multi-limbed saguaro seen at the bottom of the trail

Have you ever done the Pinnacle Peak hike? or do you have another favourite in Scottsdale?

Other posts related to this trip you might enjoy:

Leigh McAdam

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