There’s no water on the trail and dehydration can be a serious complication if you don’t carry enough.
On any day hike, I like to bring my Camel Bak hydration pack.
Hikers use the Summit Trail year round, but it is best enjoyed in cooler months or timed around sunrise or an hour or so before sunset.
The trails remain open until 11pm and many people also hike with flashlights at night.
It’s less intense than Camelback Mountain nearby, but still offers a great workout and excellent views from the top.
Driving on the Arizona 51, Piestewa Peak dominates the city to the east.
Located in the center of a major metropolitan area, the trail is one of the most visited in the nation with 4,000 to 10,000 hikers on any given week.
I’ve seen elder adventurers well into their 70s or 80s, some with canes or hiking poles, moving up the mountain at their own pace, to babies less than a year old bouncing with each step as they are carried on their mother’s back.
You’ll come across the athletes, with fit girls in tight sportswear and shirtless, muscle-bound guys in tennis shoes and shorts completing their daily run.
In my previous article on Piestewa Peak, “Part 1, The Name Controversy,” I discussed the heated debates surrounding this Phoenix landmark as it went from the early name of “Squaw Tit Peak,” to simply Squaw Peak, and finally to Piestewa Peak in 2003.
In this second part I’ll be discussing the hike to the summit of the peak, the third tallest point in Phoenix.