Travel-and-Leisure Like much of the surrounding Phoenix metropolitan area, Gilbert affords a multitude of opportunities to enjoy the g.eous desert mountain wilderness of Arizona. For leisurely hikes enjoyable for the whole family, Papago Park in next-door Tempe offers a 2.2 mile loop featuring some unique red sandstone formations and a diversity of plant-life distinctive of the region. Just south of Papago is South Mountain Park. Although the terrain is generally rugged, rocky, and mountainous, the trail lengths and difficulty ratings vary. Dobbins Lookout at South Mountain rises 2330 feet above the desert floor, is trail-accessible, and offers some beautiful views. Be sure to check out the Mormon Loop trail, a hike that rises 700 feet in elevation and passes by Indian petroglyphs and through and amongst the native vegetation. With the highest known density of chuckwallas, you’re likely to glimpse at least a few of these large lizards: Also note the distinct orange tails, a rare phenotype unique to the South Mountain population. For a challenge, try the Camelback Mountain hike, the highest peak in the Phoenix Mountains. Located in the Echo Canyon Recreation Area, Camelback’s 1.2 mile Echo Canyon trail winds its way to a 2700 foot summit, across a challenging, red-and-pink-hued, rocky terrain. The alternate east-side Cholla Trail takes a slightly longer, relaxed route to the top, but has its share of difficult sections as well. Piestewa Peak is the second highest, and the summit trail is a popular climb. However, consider checking out the other fifteen miles of trail in the preserve. Just east of Gilbert is Tonto National Forest, which also offers its share of excellent hiking. Try the Wind Cave Trail for a beautiful hike of Usery Mountain, just don’t have high expectations for the trail’s namesake "cave." Also of Usery Mountain Park, Pass Mountain Trail loops the mountain’s base, providing for a stunning diversity of landscape, including the typical Sonoran saguaro cacti, sand, and scattered rock. As the trail climbs and turns to view the Superstition Mountains, however, you’re treated to vast panoramic views of the oft-snow-capped mountain range. Wherever you’re hiking in the Gilbert, AZ area, enjoy the desert landscape of native desert flora and fauna, from barrel cactus and palo verde trees to coyotes and (be careful!) diamondback rattlesnakes. If you’re hiking in spring, you may be surprised by the region’s greenery and scattered wildflowers. Remember to start out early and bring plenty of water, as the midday sun can be treacherously hot in the desert. About the Author: 相关的主题文章: