Each is amazing in its own way – offering variations on stunning desert terrain and sweeping views. But they all come with another, less attractive feature as well – throngs of hikers.
On the other hand, mention South Mountain, and many people, even Arizonans, will draw a blank. Even though it’s the largest of Phoenix’s parks, the 16,000-acre South Mountain Preserve usually isn’t included in the same category as the other popular hiking areas.
And that’s good news for those who do venture to the South Phoenix park. The day I visited, I encountered only a few other hikers on the trail, and I had the trail’s summit views all to myself.
Another major plus of the South Mountain area? The Farm at South Mountain, a charming pecan grove-cum-eatery that features, among other restaurants, the picnic-friendly and rustic Farm Kitchen.
Because of its proximity to the hiking and mountain biking trails of the South Mountain Preserve, The Farm makes for a perfect “Hike and a Bite” adventure – another in my blog series of beautiful trails and the delicious refreshments often available nearby.