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Weavers Needle Loop

Intermediate/Difficult
  4.8 ( 17 ) Favorite

Trail

12.7 mile 20.4 kilometer loop
84% Runnable
Intermediate/Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 2,643' 806 m
Descent: -2,637' -804 m
High: 3,738' 1,139 m
Low: 2,435' 742 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 8% (5°)
Max Grade: 52% (28°)

Dogs

No Dogs
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Trail shared by John Maurizi

Circumnavigate Weaver Needle with great views all the way.

John Maurizi

Features Views · Wildflowers

Overview

This run features great desert scenery in the historic Superstition Wilderness. Runners will circumnavigate Weaver Needle on this 13-mile loop. The loop offers amazing views of Weaver Needle. In spring, the trail has an abundance of wildflowers blooming; this is probably the best time of year to run this loop.

Need to Know

Bring more water than you think you need and start early!

Description

This is a difficult run! Plan on a lot of time and an early start. I did this run in a clockwise direction which really doesn't matter much, but I recommend this direction to get the steepest part of the run done first. Most people just do an out-and-back run to Freemont Saddle to view Weavers Needle. This is the first section and very steep. If you are doing the loop, plan on a 7 a.m. or 8 a.m. start. Much of this first section will be in the shade at this time.

From the Freemont Saddle, the trail descends to the left. I enjoyed this section as you have great views of Weavers Needle the entire way. The trail is also relatively easy to follow at this point. To continue the loop, the Peralta Canyon Trail will meet the Dutchman Trail #104. Take the Dutchman Trail to the right for one mile. This has a difficult, rocky uphill section.

After one mile on the Dutchman Trail, you'll reach a post with a sign directing you to the Terrapin Trail #234. The Terrapin Trail is a tedious section of the Weaver's Needle Loop that can feel like it drags on forever. Additionally, there is a portion of the trail where Weavers Needle isn't visible, and since the Terrapin Trail never heads in the direction of the needle, you'll want to have a good trail map to navigate the area.

Along the trail, there are several side trails that branch to the right. Taking these will lead to views of Weavers Needle. There is one side trail that is a bit deceiving as it looks like you are continuing on the Terrapin Trail. If you climb a steep saddle to a view of Weavers Needle, you likely ended up on this side trail by accident and will want to retrace your steps to pick up Terrapin Trail again. You can use the Trail Run Project mobile app to make sure you stay on the right trail.

Eventually, you'll come to the Bluff Springs Trail #235 junction. From here, you are on the trail back to the trailhead, but this section is longer than you think. Much longer. Every time you crest a hill, you'll think you'll see the parking area, but you'll still have another hill to go. This was a bit defeating, but keep running and you'll eventually end up back at the trailhead parking lot.

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Feb 19, 2019
Austin Black
Rather than returning on the Terrapin trail, stayed on the Dutchman Trail (104) back to the TH. Overall very runnable. Great views! 19.4mi — 3h 16m
Jan 29, 2019
Brad Hansen
Like it but it’s not very runable unless you have ankle support and a very very good rock plate. 12mi
Mar 5, 2018
Rebecca Harris
I found this to be a lot less challenging than the description lead me to believe. 12.6mi — 3h 00m

Trail Ratings

  4.8 from 17 votes

#315

Overall
  4.8 from 17 votes
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Featured Run Rankings

#18

in Arizona

#315

Overall
239 Views Last Month
9,261 Since Apr 26, 2017
Intermediate/Difficult

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Photos

Along the Peralta Canyon Trail, you'll have a spectacular view of the mountains behind you as you're on your way to Weaver's Needle.
Apr 19, 2017 near Gold Camp, AZ
Peralta Canyon Trail.
Oct 12, 2016 near Gold Camp, AZ
Weaver's Needle stands prominently in the distance.
Feb 17, 2017 near Apache…, AZ
There's great campsites along the Peralta Canyon Trail.
Apr 26, 2017 near Apache…, AZ
Weavers Needle is a stunning feat of geology.
Apr 26, 2017 near Apache…, AZ
Weavers Needle seen from "Lone Pine" overlook
Apr 8, 2018 near Apache…, AZ

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