Desert Classic - Hike and Mountain Bike near Phoenix, Arizona
4502 E Pima Canyon Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85042, USA,Phoenix,Arizona
33.3629391, -111.9858245
7.8 miles SE of Phoenix, Arizona
Address: 4502 E Pima Canyon Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85042, USA
GPS: 33°21'46.6"N 111°59'9.0"W
Maps | Directions
State: Arizona
Trail Length: 17.00 miles
MTB Difficulty: Beginner
Trail Type: Out & Back
MTB Trail Type: Singletrack
Hike Difficulty: Easiest

Pet Friendly

Hike and Mountain Bike

The Desert Classic trail is just that, a classic at the South Mountain Park area. Because it is such a classic, the trail is well marked and well worn by high traffic flow of riders and hikers. The trail travels north or south for 9 miles depending on where the starting point is, then turns around at the end for another 9 miles, creating an out & back trail on hardpacked sand, some sandy washes, and small chunky rocks.

There are a few different ways to ride the DC trail: 1). Park at the Prima Canyon parking area, keep the mountains on your right and ride south. Shortly after leaving the parking area there is a map with the DC trail well-marked on it. Follow the signs for the DC trail and keep left as you pass the Marcos De Niza Trail. The trail ends at a junction with Telegraph Pass Trail, turning around and following itself back for 9 miles, creating the out & back. 2). Park at the Desert Foothills parking area and ride towards the mountain. Keep right as you pass the Telegraph Pass Trail, then ride for 9 miles keep the mountain on your left and following the DC trail markers. 3) Park at either of the parking areas and shuttle a car to the other parking area, making the trail only 9 miles of singletrack instead of the 17 mile out & back.

Because it is a multi-purpose trail, always be cautious of hikers and other riders.

This trail is without a doubt the easiest and least technical ride in South Mountain Park. Crossing the many small washes that run down from the mountain adds some interest and fun without much difficulty. Courtesy of mtbproject.com
Whether the trail is easy or not all depends on your fitness and skill. Yes, this trail is a piece of cake, compared to National, but it’s still fun, fast and furious and a singlespeeder’s hammerfest. Courtesy of mtbikeaz.com
540 Edited by sott

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Never modify trail features. Ride trails when they're dry enough that you won't leave ruts. Speak up when you see others on the trail and always yield to hikers, horses, and others coming uphill. Always ride on the established trail.

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Be courteous, informed, and prepared. Read trailhead guidelines, stay on the trail, and don’t feed the wildlife.

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  1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
  2. Travel & camp on durable surfaces
  3. Dispose of waste properly
  4. Leave what you find
  5. Minimize campfire impacts
  6. Respect wildlife
  7. Be considerate of other visitors

Directions

From Phoenix, Arizona

  1. Head west on W Washington St toward 1st Ave (315 ft)
  2. Turn left onto S 1st Ave (397 ft)
  3. Turn left onto W Jefferson St (1.6 mi)
  4. Keep right to continue on E Jefferson St (0.5 mi)
  5. Turn right onto the ramp to Tucson (0.3 mi)
  6. Merge onto I-10 E (6.3 mi)
  7. Keep left at the fork to stay on I-10 E (2.9 mi)
  8. Take exit 157 for Elliot Rd (0.4 mi)
  9. Turn right onto E Elliot Rd (0.4 mi)
  10. Turn right onto S 48th St (1.1 mi)
  11. Turn left to stay on S 48th St (312 ft)
  12. Turn left onto E Pima Canyon Rd (0.6 mi)
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South Mountain Desert Classic Trail by Yardstick401
Desert Classic trail - South Mountain- Part 1 by User Name Desert Classic Tr - South Mountain by 22wood88

Trails

Distance ?

1.5 miles

Elevation Gain ?

56 feet

Real Ascent ?

188 feet

Real Descent ?

132 feet

Avg Grade (0°)

1%

Grade (-5° to 10°)

-9% to 18%

Elevation differences are scaled for emphasis. While the numbers are accurate, the cut-away shown here is not to scale.

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