Gold Canyon

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Best Trails

Hieroglyphic Trail

Gold Canyon, AZ

Hieroglyphic Trail is a 3 mile trail located near Gold Canyon, Arizona. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible from September until May. At the end of the trail are petroglyphs and small waterfalls in early spring.

  • Best Hiking

  • Best Mountain Biking

  • Best Trail Running

Recent Reviews

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Hieroglyphic Trail
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3 Completed 1 Reviews

I've hiked this trail twice--last year (2013) in March and again this year (2014) in March. There were allot of wildflowers in 2013 and more water in the stream--2014 hike there was an abundance of hedgehog cactus blooming so it made up for not as many wildflowers. Nice views of the surrounding valleys. I enjoy doing this hike.

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Hieroglyphic Trail
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5 Completed 5 Reviews

This is the hike I take people from out of town on. Low elevation gain and the petroglyphs make it a nice little hike for inexperienced hikers. The real fun starts after the petroglyphs and if you're really adventurous, you can take it up to the Flat Iron. This is a very busy trail and there are usually lots of bees. Do NOT hike this in summer! The running water turns to cesspools and the gnats will eat you alive.

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Peralta Trail
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8 Completed 5 Reviews

I was very impressed by this trail. To gain access to the trail head, you have to drive up a long dirt road from the 60 in Gold Canyon, which isn't too beat up, just a little washed out and choppy in areas. Also, there isnt a fee to park here. The trail itself is easy to follow and is a mix of easy flat areas to steeper rocky areas. The scenery is amazing and there are many shaded areas if you feel like resting. The trick is with this trail, is that when you come to the "end", a large open dirt area, it's really not the end. The trail ends up branching off into a few other smaller trails, so stay to your right past some large boulders and head to the lone pine tree. Amazing views from there, and since most people dont get to that point, it is much less crowded. I found a great spot to eat lunch with the only sounds coming from the birds flying overhead, very peaceful. Since I got an early start, I didn't encounter too many hikers on the way up, but heading back down, it was difficult staying on pace due to the crowds. I really enjoyed this hike, and I plan on heading back soon to explore some of the other trails that are accessible there.

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Peralta Trail
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3 Completed 2 Reviews

Great local hike. Started at 7:20 AM and there were already 15 cars in the parking lot. The road in is a bit dusty with slight wash boarding. Three separate trails take off from the trail head. Made the top in one hour ten min. The first 25 min. was easy hiking following a stream bed up the canyon. Then a moderate elevation gain to the top. Great views up the canyon and at the top. Coming down passed a lot of people on their way up.

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Hieroglyphic Trail
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1 Completed 1 Reviews

Really nice little hike! Many cacti were blooming and plenty of songbirds along the way. The trail wasn't too crowded (Thursday mid morning). It might be more aptly named Petroglyph Trail, just saying.... :)
Highly recommend for any hike loving people. Wear sturdy shoes and a walking stick is a nice addition on the rockier parts.

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Peralta Trail
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11 Completed 9 Reviews

Beautiful trail. Lots of neat rock formations. Getting to the saddle and overlooking Weaver's needle is pretty cool. Now to go climb that rock.....

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Peralta Trail
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8 Completed 8 Reviews

Beautiful, interesting trail. Lots of plant life, interesting rock formations, small stream with pools. Occasional good shade. Pretty steep & fairly rocky, but not technical.

Time estimate in trail info is pretty optimistic. We moved along fairly well, but had to turn back before reaching the scenic overlook at the end because we were running out of time. With 1/2 mile to the top, we had already been climbing for 1:45. At that pace, total trail time would have been more like 4 hours, not 3:30.

Bring plenty of water, and be prepared for some dog owners to have their pets off leash! This is a problem if you have a shy dog with you as we did. I can also imagine it being a problem for small humans, and it's very rude! The rules at the trailhead clearly state that dogs must be leashed. Would give 5 stars, if not for the inconsiderate dog owners!

My wife & I will try this trail again sometime, earlier in the day and without the dog. We enjoyed the trail a lot, but we want to make it to the overlook!

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Lost Goldmine Trail
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8 Completed 8 Reviews

Gorgeous views, interesting trail, not too difficult! Uncrowded, even on a springtime Saturday. No charge for parking. Saw hikers, mountain bikes, horseback riders, and dogs, but not too many. All were polite and shared the trail comfortably. Other than when encountering another trail user, only nature sounds were heard - no traffic noise or ATVs, etc. Vegetation was attractive and varied; wildlife was common. Trail meanders up, down and around, has shade here and there, and is not too worn down. Seems pretty well maintained, and not abused. In short, we loved it!

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Hieroglyphic Trail
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2 Completed 1 Reviews

Took the kids, ages 9, 7, and 5, plus the two year old in a pack on my back. Easy trails, with decent climbs (for kids that age). It wasn't too hard for them in the end, although it definitely used up their energy. Make sure you bring plenty of water and snacks for when you make it to the hieroglyphics. Would definitely go again.

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Hieroglyphic Trail
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3 Completed 3 Reviews

This is a great trail to take the family on. I have hiked this trail twice in the last 2 months. The first time with my wife and kids (8y, 6y, and 3y) and the second time with my sister and 3 year old daughter (who rode in a pack on my back). If you can catch this one after a nice rain storm the pools will be full and teaming with life around them. The petroglyphs at the reflecting pools are abundant, but are wearing away due to high visitation. Saw a chuckwala on this hike sunning himself.

I would suggest anyone who enjoys the sonoran desert, petroglyphs, caves, water and gorgeous views take this hike. With kids it was around 45 minutes to the petroglyphs, without kids it took less than 30 minutes.

If you are interested in finding some food/drinks in the nearby town visit www.downtownaj.com/visit-aj/explore (this will give you a filterable POI map).

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