Trail Run Project Logo

Harquahala Peak Trail

Difficult
 5.0 (2)

Take a step back in time and follow the original supply route to the Smithsonian Observatory located on the summit.


Your Rating:      Clear Rating
Your Difficulty:
Your Favorites: Add to Favorites · Your List
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

5.0

Miles

8.0

KM

70%

Runnable

5,661' 1,725 m

High

2,327' 709 m

Low

3,333' 1,016 m

Up

0' 0 m

Down

13%

Avg Grade (7°)

54%

Max Grade (28°)

Dogs Unknown

Features Views · Wildflowers

Need to Know

Outhouse is located at the trailhead. Picnic tables on the summit.

Description

This is an out-and-back trail.

Getting to the trailhead is tricky. Look for the sign on the south side of Highway 60 between mileposts 70 and 71. Be sure to close the gate behind you. Be prepared to get some Arizona pinstriping on your vehicle for the 2 mile drive. If this is not your thing, you could ride a mountain bike up the dirt road and lock it to the fence at the trailhead.

If you start early enough in the day, you can enjoy copious amounts of shade. In April, I start at 7 AM and about 80% of the route is protected from the hot sun.

The trail itself is for the most part obvious and easy to follow. Beware catclaw bushes along the trail. You may consider wearing pants to protect your legs.

Find your pace on the straight and relatively flat first mile. Wander past the base camp area where the Smithsonian Institute used to shuttle supplies to the summit. At about 3 miles, you'll cross the creek bottom and begin a series of switchbacks. You'll eventually climb up to a saddle on the mountain at around the 5 mile mark. From there, you can finally see your destination on the summit, which is about another 20-25 minutes of climbing. Pack a lunch and picnic at one of the benches or tables on the summit. Enjoy the view!

Flora & Fauna

Catclaw. Watch for rattlesnakes.

Contacts

Shared By:

Colin Pollock

Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 2 votes

#1110

Overall
  5.0 from 2 votes
5 Star
100%
4 Star
0%
3 Star
0%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#60

in Arizona

#1,110

Overall
47 Views Last Month
618 Since Apr 7, 2019
Difficult

0%
0%
0%
0%
100%
0%

Photos

The view from the "saddle" up to the summit.  You can see the radio tower and the Smithsonian building. About another 20-30 minutes to go...
Apr 8, 2019 near Salome, AZ
The summit view, looking west.
Apr 8, 2019 near Salome, AZ
Harquahala Peak Trail cactus field
Apr 11, 2020 near Salome, AZ
Flower bloom
Apr 11, 2020 near Salome, AZ
Flat start to the trail
Apr 7, 2019 near Salome, AZ
The Trailhead
Apr 8, 2019 near Salome, AZ

0 Comments

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
Unknown See History
Add Your Check-In

Check-Ins

none