Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
4,488.00 ft (1,367.94 m)
Trail type
Shuttle
Distance
16.20 mi (26.07 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

AZT Passage 22: Saddle Mountain is a 16.2-mile point-to-point section of the roughly 800-mile Arizona National Scenic Trail. This moderately rated section runs from Sunflower to Mount Peeley and is located      northeast of Phoenix, AZ. This passage is accessible for hikers, trail runners, long-distance backpackers, and equestrians.

Passage 22 begins a long stretch through the Mazatzal Wilderness, which will continue through Passage 25. The Mazatzal Mountains are a diverse range defined by craggy peaks, serpentine canyons, and solitude. 

The trail follows a singletrack, and occasional doubletrack, through thick manzanita and mountain shrubs. It features verdant hillsides, winding canyons, and craggy peaks. It passes by seeps and springs, and briefly follows Sycamore Creek. 

The trail continues north through scrub oak and crosses a streambed in a charming valley under idyllic white cliffs. It skirts the side of Saddle Mountain, traversing through hillsides and rolling grasslands. It climbs up to Thicket Spring and continues along a rocky ascent to the junction with the Mazatzal Divide Trail (Trail 23) and the end of the passage. 

Note: Mountain bikes are prohibited in the Mazatzal Wilderness.

DIRECTIONS
Follow Arizona National Scenic Trail Signs/Trail Markers.

Highway 87 to Saddle Mountain Trail 91. 

Trail 91 north to the junction with Sheep Creek Trail 88. 

Trail 88 to Thicket Spring Trail 95. 

Thicket Spring Trail 95 to West Fork Trail 260.

West Fork Trail 260 to Cornucopia Trail 86. , where it turns sharply left/north and follows the drainage 1.5 Cornucopia Trail 86 to miles to Thicket Spring Trail 95. 

Thicket Spring Trail 95 to the Mazatzal Divide Trail junction marked with a steel AZT sign and the end of the passage. 

Note. The Mount Peeley Trailhead is a remote trailhead that is accessible in dry conditions and is located .5 miles east.

WATER
Check the Arizona Trail Water Report for current information at: https://aztrail.org/explore/water-sources/.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION INFORMATION

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Spring
Fall
Summer

Congestion

Low

Parking Pass

None

Open Year-round

Yes

Pros

Solitude. Creeks. Scenic Views.

Trailhead Elevation

3,469.00 ft (1,057.35 m)

Highest point

5,781.00 ft (1,762.05 m)

Features

Wildlife
Backcountry camping
Wildflowers
Bird watching

Typically multi-day

No

Permit required

No

Location

Nearby Lodging + Camping

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