Located within Phoenix Mountains Preserve, North Mountain Park offers hiking trails of varying difficulty and 2 summits for scenic views. This park is home to a visitor center and includes the Penny Howe Barrier Free Trail.

This 1.6-mile out-and-back trail is dog friendly and welcomes pups on leashes. Its first fifth mile ascends a natural rocky section and zigzags upward to meet a paved path. Read on for some ideas.

Dog-Friendly Hike

There are several dog-friendly hikes offered at North Mountain Park in Phoenix AZ. Dogs must be on leash and their owners should bring waste bags to pick up after them. The park is usually busy on weekends and nights, so weekdays are the best time to visit.

The park’s most popular trail is the National Hiking Trail. This mile-long loop offers a variety of views and is easy for most dogs. This trail also passes by the second-largest landslide in Arizona, which is sure to thrill geology buffs.

Another great dog-friendly hiking trail at North Mountain Park is the Quest Trail. This trail is a moderate climb that provides stunning views of downtown Phoenix and ends at a picture-perfect stop for you and your furry friend.

Easy Hike

If you’re a beginner looking for a fun, easy hiking trail that’s dog-friendly, then look no further than the paved North Mountain National Trail (Trail 44). This family-friendly 1.6-mile loop hike welcomes pups on leashes. Beginning at the Maricopa Trailhead, this hike begins on a natural rocky section that zig-zags upward to a paved pedestrian road for the remainder of the trek. From here, you’ll experience mountain and desert views. Keep an eye out for ancient petroglyphs etched into boulders along the way.

The park’s second-highest peak, North Mountain sits next to neighboring Shaw Butte and boasts crisp views of nearby peaks and downtown Phoenix. This park offers trails of varying difficulty, plus a visitor center. Parking is free at the trailhead, but expect a small lot to fill up quickly. To save time, park in the large interior parking lot just a few blocks away. This option also allows you to start your hike earlier in the day before it gets too hot. Explore more!

Moderate Hike

Located within urban neighborhoods, North Mountain Park offers crisp views of nearby peaks and the downtown Phoenix skyline. The park also features hiking trails ranging from barrier-free to moderate. One of the most popular trails is the paved National Hiking Trail (Trail 100), but this path can be crowded with hikers and runners aiming to cram in their daily workouts.

Those who prefer to see the landscape and the park from a different angle should hike the rocky, looping Cholla Trail. This path traverses the park’s iconic Sonoran Desert landscape and offers a glimpse of native wildlife. The trail also offers a chance to view botanical treasures including cacti, like saguaro and cholla, as well as a variety of flowers.

Another paved trail that is popular with locals is the Penny Howe Barrier Free Trail. This paved route begins at a teeny parking lot and ascends to the peak. The climb can be steep and rocky, so this hike is not appropriate for seniors or those with mobility challenges.

Hard Hike

Located just minutes from downtown Phoenix, North Mountain Park offers quick, urban hiking with epic city views. Shaw Butte and neighboring North Mountain offer easy access, unusually good parking, and a heart-pounding hike that might be better than the gym! Whether hiking at sunrise or sunset, you can see crisp images of nearby peaks and downtown Phoenix skyscrapers.

The North Mountain National Trail (Trail 44) is a hard hiking trail that begins with a natural rocky section and then continues on a paved pedestrian road, requiring you to use both your feet and hands at times. This loop hike is rated moderate to difficult and is 1.6 miles long with an elevation change of 614 feet.

The Bootlegger trail is a 3.1-mile round trip and includes less than 200 ft of elevation change. You’ll also enjoy beautiful desert scenery and a view of the Verde River Valley. Allow 2 hours. Check our next area of interest here.


Driving directions from Fox Vally Solar to North Mountain Park

Driving directions from North Mountain Park to Deer Valley Park

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