Black Canyon City hike near Phoenix leads to the Agua Fria River

Tucked in the hilly backcountry between Interstate 17 and the feeder gullies of the Agua Fria River, the Little Grand Canyon segment of the Black Canyon National Recreation Trail offers easy access to a remote-feeling hike escape.

The 1.4-mile slice of the more than 80-mile route that runs between Carefree Highway in north Phoenix to the fringes of Prescott National Forest near Mayer showcases a rugged,  water-ravaged landscape entrenched by mountains, mesas, washes and mineral-rich foothills just over 30 miles north of downtown Phoenix.

Named more for the presence of the Little Grand Canyon Ranch on the banks of the Agua Fria rather than for any resemblance of the real geological deal to the north, the segment delivers a pleasing rotation of eye-popping vistas served up by way of edge-hugging switchbacks and slinky single tracks.

The Agua Fria River pools against cliffs on the Black Canyon National Recreation Trail north of Phoenix.

Hikers should be aware that the area is also a popular draw for recreational shooting and OHV use. Expect to hear a constant pop-pop of rifles and the rev of quad engines during the first half-mile of the hike.

The trail itself is open only to foot, horse and non-electric bike travel, so the noise is soon absorbed in stony clefts and acres of pristine desert. 

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Back to top button