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McDowell Mountain Regional Park

Superstition Mountains Area, Arizona

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McDowell Mountain Regional Park

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  • McDowell Park entrance.- McDowell Mountain Regional Park
  • The Nature Center.- McDowell Mountain Regional Park
  • The reserveable picnic area also serves as overflow camping.- McDowell Mountain Regional Park
  • Bikers on the Pemberton Loop Trail.- McDowell Mountain Regional Park
  • Shaded playground in the campground.- McDowell Mountain Regional Park
  • Typical campsite in the family campground.- McDowell Mountain Regional Park
  • Tent site at the Ironwood picnic area.- McDowell Mountain Regional Park
  • McDowell Mountain Park.- McDowell Mountain Regional Park
  • Spring is the time for blooming cacti.- McDowell Mountain Regional Park
  • Leaving McDowell Mountain Park.- McDowell Mountain Regional Park
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Many varied hiking trails. Mountain bike tracks. Great camping options.
Cons: 
None.
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Region:
Superstition Mountains Area, AZ
Congestion: 
Moderate
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Parking Pass: 
Day use fee
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Fall
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Pro Contributor

McDowell Mountain Park is one of the oldest and largest of the marvelous chain of regional parks in Maricopa County. These parks surround the huge Phoenix metro area and offer a multitude of recreational opportunities. McDowell Mountain has over 40 miles of hiking/biking/equestrian trails, a marvelous campground with group and primitive areas, a separate tent-only camping area, a competitive mountain bike track complex, 88 open picnic sites in two areas, plus reservable group picnic ramadas and a small nature center.

Most trails in the park are multi-use, allowing bikes, horses, and hikers. The trails interconnect, allowing an almost infinite variety of loop hikes to be created. Some of the primary trails:

  • Pemberton Loop: 15.3 miles, 667-foot elevation gain.
  • Scenic Trail: 4.5 miles, 272-foot elevation gain.
  • Escondido Trail: 6.2 miles, 284-foot elevation gain.
  • Tonto Tank Trail: 2.7 miles, 446-foot elevation gain.
  • Lousley Hill: 1.2 miles, 295-foot elevation gain.
  • Granite Trail: 2.5 miles, 332-foot elevation gain.
  • North Loop: 2.9 miles, 138-foot elevation gain.

The McDowell Mountain Competitive Track consists of three inter-connected tracks: the Long Loop for general riders, the Sport Loop for intermediate and advanced riders, and the Technical Loop for expert riders. The tracks contain a variety of features to test riders’ skills, including steep inclines, swooping turns, and rugged terrain. The track is open to runners and horseback riders as well.

Camping

  • E. I. Rowland Campground: A typical campground with 76 sites for RVs or tents. Water and electric hook ups.
  • Ironwood tent camping area: Thirteen primitive sites with nearby restrooms and water.
  • Three-acre group campground: Room for up to 30 RVs or tents.
  • Youth group campground
  • Minks Camp and Eagle Camp: Small primitive camps.
  • Group Picnic Ramada: Can be reserved for groups larger than 30 units and is also used for overflow camping

The beautiful desert and mountain scenery of McDowell Mountain Park is a real treasure for residents and visitors to the Phoenix area. 

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(8 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(31 within a 30 mile radius)

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