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McDowell Sonoran Preserve

Features Animals
18333 N. Thompson Peak Pkwy, Scottsdale, AZ
+1 617-724-3466
Review Highlights
Gateway Loop to the Saddle was absolutely beautiful

We took the Gateway Loop Trail up to the Saddle. Beautiful vistas and views. Moderate climbing and... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
Who C
Plattsburgh, New York
Great for for first time hikers

This was our first time to Scottsdale and we wanted to find a good place to hike that would be... read more

Reviewed 4 days ago
Evansville, Indiana
via mobile
Read all 906 reviews
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  • Excellent78%
  • Very good18%
  • Average2%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“gateway loop” (94 reviews)
“nature trail” (21 reviews)
“desert hiking” (15 reviews)
18333 N. Thompson Peak Pkwy, Scottsdale, AZ
+1 617-724-3466
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Reviews (906)
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1 - 10 of 893 reviews

Reviewed 2 days ago

We took the Gateway Loop Trail up to the Saddle. Beautiful vistas and views. Moderate climbing and sharp rocks made good shoes or hiking boots a must. Water is also essential. Per Strava, the total distance from the trail head building, around the loop and...More

Thank Who C
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

This was our first time to Scottsdale and we wanted to find a good place to hike that would be challenging enough to feel like a workout but easy enough for a first time hiker and this was a great choice. We ended up doing...More

Thank EAB1341
Reviewed 1 week ago

At first I missed the parking area because of Google Maps and ended up next door. You know when you arrive as it is clearly marked from the roadway as we wanted to do the Gateway Loop. I was impressed that the site was manned,...More

Thank Where_to_travel_next
Reviewed 1 week ago

Excellent place to spent a few hours in the desert. Very informative and well signposted. We visit this place every time we are in Phoenix.

Thank Travellady1949
Reviewed 1 week ago

The McDowell Sonoran Preserve is beautiful desert with many trails to choose from and nice parking lots and bathrooms to use. A great place to hike not too far from town.

Thank herewego223
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Great place to hike in Scottsdale. Ample parking. Helpful maps. Beautiful scenery. Bring water and hats. It gets hot. And good shoes. It’s rocky. But a great hike for families. We loved it !

Thank Cathy N
Reviewed 1 week ago

Try to hike early morning; we made the mistake of hiking in the mid-day heat! Bring water and wear good shoes. Nice trails, well marked, great views. Beautifully maintained.

Thank travelmomwith2teens
Reviewed 1 week ago

I hike the preserve weekly. It's a beautiful desert landscape with distances and trails of varying difficulty for everyone. It's never the same twice. I especially love the Spring when the desert wildflowers and cactus are in bloom. There is frequently wildlife to observe as...More

Thank Borg S
Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

This is a lovely park encompassing a large area of Sonoran desert. There is a small nature center with very friendly staff. There is a tortoise enclosure outside where one can view dessert tortoises up close but still in their natural environment. Inside there are...More

Thank Margaret M
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

After hiking Pinnacle Peak, the volunteer recommended we hike the Preserve. We selected Brown Ranch hike. Nice views. Nice facility - rest rooms and water.

Thank lrnshop
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Questions & Answers
16 October 2017|
AnswerShow all 7 answers
Response from Venice Beach | Reviewed this property |
October to May months are a good time to hike in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area.
4 September 2017|
AnswerShow all 6 answers
Response from TucsonOtawa_Canada | Reviewed this property |
I think all of them are dog friendly. We saw a few people with their dog on our hike.
9 May 2017|
AnswerShow all 11 answers
Response from AnnBertschin | Reviewed this property |
Multiple trails varying in distance ( .5 mile - 11 miles - the majority of them are in the 4 mile range) and level of difficulty . . . Our 8 year old easily handled one of the shorter trails. If contemplating one of the... More