This lovely loop is located at the southwest end of South Mountain. The loop is perfect on a winter morning as most of the terrain is exposed to the south. Great views of the Estrella Mountains to the west and of Ahwatukee.
Features: Birding — Views — Wildflowers
There is no bathroom and no water in the parking lot.
This is a less trafficked part of South Mountain so it is easier to find a parking spot than anywhere else in South Mountain. The beginning of the trail is common to Pyramid Trail
and Bursera Trail
. After 0.5 a mile take a left at the fork if you want to start with the harder part and end on an easy descent. It is singletrack all the way so you must beware of those visitors on mountain bikes.
As soon as you get a little bit of elevation the views are beautiful, with the Estrella Mountains to the west, and West Ahwatukee to the south. Most of the loop is exposed to the South so I will not recommend this particular route during the summer days.
After a little ways, you'll turn from the Bursera Trail
onto the Gila Trail
. This junction is accessed after your long ascent and descent on the Bursera Trail
, and more moderate trail follows. From the Gila Trail
, you'll take a right onto the Lost Ranch Mine Road in order to turn back towards your vehicle.