Hiking Arizona’s Camelback Mountain: Photo Essay

Despite hearing rumblings about how hard it is to climb Camelback Mountain, I did not hesitate to join some of my family members on the hike during a recent get together in Arizona. A decision I would not regret although I seriously questioned if I were up for the challenge not too long after we started.

The beginning of the hike is a bit of a tease with a gradual climb, up a wide gravel path. Then you start to feel the burn with a staircase gently introducing you to what’s in store next. It was just after this first flight of stairs that I became very grateful I brought my camera along. It knew it was going to make the perfect disguise for some much-needed breaks along the way. Once you clear the first staircase, the endless manoeuvering of boulders begins. The first section, more narrow and much steeper than the first, required fencing on one side and a hand rail down the middle for assistance. The rest of the hike consisted mostly of more uphill boulder manoeuvering with little or no flat areas. There are still plenty of areas to stop and rest, have a drink of water and take in the views. However, it is the view from the top you’ll want to sit and take in the most. Beautiful in every direction!

There are two trails that lead to the 2,704 foot summit of Camelback Mountain. The 1.5 mile Cholla Trail and the more difficult 1.2 mile Echo Canyon Trail that we chose to take. Here are my overall thoughts of hiking Echo Canyon Trail.

  • Rocks, rocks and more rocks!
  • A very steep ascent! {according to world of me}
  • Sturdy shoes are a must!
  • Bring plenty of water!
  • Go early in the morning! {minimizing the Arizona heat}
  • Incredible views!
  • Worth every step!

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Both the views and sense of accomplishment when standing at the top of Camelback make this a very rewarding hike. One I would suggest not missing if you’re visiting the Phoenix area of Arizona. Click HERE for more information about Camelback Mountain, directions to the different trailheads and other helpful tips.

“You’re off to great places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, so get on your way!”
 Dr. Seuss

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