Angel’s Palace

Angel's Palace Trail

Distance: 1.7 miles (round trip) Difficulty: Easy, but some route-finding possible Best time of year: Fall, Winter, Spring Last hiked: 2016 May The Angel’s Palace Trail is a short and sweet hike, showing off some outstanding views in Kodachrome Basin State Park. The trail is mostly easy-going and makes great use of slickrock at its higher points. This gives it …

Aa Flow Trail

Sunset Above Hiking Trail

Distance: 0.2 miles (one way) Difficutly: Simple Best time of year: Spring, Summer, Fall Last hiked: 2016 February The Aa Flow Trail (not a typo – pronounced: AH-ah) is a quick and easy 0.2 miles round trip. It starts at the same parking area as the Lenox Crater Trailhead, and then weaves through a lava field from one end of …

Panorama Trail

Sandstone Canyon

Distance: 6.6 miles Difficulty: Easy or Moderate Best time of year: Fall, Winter, Spring Last hiked: 2016 May The Panorama Trail starts off easily enough, winding through junipers and pinyon pine trees past large sandstone buttes. All of these lie below the signature Entrada Formation of sandstone walls for which Kodachrome Basin State Park is named. The trail gives hikers …

Mary’s Nipple and Peak 9943

Hiker on Peak 9943

Distance: 1.3 miles Difficulty: Intermediate Best time of year: Summer, Fall Last hiked: 2016 July Mary’s Nipple and Peak 9943 are perfect if you’ve ever wanted to climb a peak in the Tetons, but didn’t want to go more than a few miles. The top of the Dreamcatcher Lift at Grand Targhee provides access to a trail that brings you …

Upper Escalante River Alcove

Hiker in Sandstone Alcove

Distance: 3 miles (one way) Difficulty: Easy Best time of year: Fall, Spring Last hiked: 2016 May The Upper Escalante River Alcove is a great alternative to the increasingly popular Hole-in-the-Rock Road. The out-of-the-way trail brings you into a landscape like something right out of Zion National Park. You follow a healthy desert river through an enormous sandstone canyon with …

Bannock Trail

Bannock Trail on Rocky Ridgeline

Distance: 3 miles (one way) Difficulty: Strenuous Best time of year: Spring, Summer, Fall Last hiked: 2016 September The Bannock Trail is a great way to experience all the dramatic elevation change that Grand Targhee has to offer. The trail brings you through stunning aspen groves and up to rocky ledges that overlook massive canyons and basins in the Teton …

Spooky Slot Canyon

Slot Canyon Abstract

Distance: 1.2 miles (one way – to Spooky) Difficulty: Easy, but tight spaces and some scrambling Best time of year: Fall, Winter, Spring Last hiked: 2016 May There’s a great loop that connects Peek-A-Boo Slot Canyon to Spooky Slot Canyon, which was my original plan for a hike. As it turns out, ascending into Peek-A-Boo Slot can be very tricky …

Alaska Basin via Devil’s Stairs Loop

Alaska Basin and Buck Mountain

Distance: 17.4 miles (round trip) Difficulty: Moderate/Strenuous Best time of year: Summer, early Fall Last hiked: 2016 July The Alaska Basin is rapidly becoming a go to place for people wanting to escape the crowds in the Teton Mountains. Tucked away in the middle of the range, it attracts adventurous tourists from the Wyoming side, as well as mountain enthusiasts …

Wire Pass

Hiker Admiring Slot Canyon

Distance: 1.8 miles (one way) Difficulty: Easy, but a few hurdles Best time of year: Fall, Spring Last hiked: 2016 May I knew there was rain in the forecast, but I had also never really poked into any slot canyons in the Vermillion Cliffs area. Since I was nearby having just come off the Arizona Trail, I wanted to change …

Kiwanis Trail to Ranger Trail Loop

Barrel Cactus in Desert Mountains

Distance: 4.6 miles Difficulty: Moderate Best time of year: Fall, Winter, Spring Last hiked: 2016 March The Kiwanis Trail has a fair amount of sentimental value for me. Aside from a single road trip just before I moved out west for the first time in 2004, the Kiwanis Trail in South Mountain Park was the first trail I ever went …

Mormon to Geronimo Trail Loop

Geronimo Trail

Distance: 6 miles (loop) Difficulty: Moderate Best time of year: Fall, Winter, Spring Last hiked: 2016 February From the urban confines of Phoenix, the South Mountains don’t look terribly impressive, nor even very inviting. A hike into the mountains, however, reveals a fascinating desert environment with surprising seclusion from the constant roar of city noise. As the country’s largest urban …

Lava Flow Trail

Sunset Crater and Pines

Distance: 1.5 miles Difficulty: Easy Best time of year: Spring, Summer, Fall Last hiked: 2016 February The Lava Flow Trail can be accessed from two different locations. One is a parking area from the main road, another is from the Lenox Crater Trail just to the west. Lava Flow Trail Description Heading over from the Lenox Crater Trail, the walk …

Two Bit Peak

Scottsdale from Phoenix Mountains

Distance: 1.5 miles (one way) Difficulty: Strenuous Best time of year: Fall, Winter, Spring Last hiked: 2016 March Two Bit Peak, formerly known as Peak 2429, is a rugged and adventurous scramble up to outstanding views of the northern Phoenix area. Views stretch out in all directions, rivaled only by nearby Piestawa Peak and Camelback Mountain. The best part is, …

Lenox Crater

Evergreens in Lava Field

Distance: 1.5 miles Difficulty: Moderate Best time of year: Spring, Summer, Fall Last hiked: 2016 February Lenox Crater Trail Description The Lenox Crater Trail starts off along the main road across from its parking area. From there, it immediately begins ascending about 300 feet through a ponderosa pine forest. These grand, majestic trees grow right out of the volcanic lava …

Piestawa Peak

Piestawa Peak Summit

Distance: 1.2 miles (one way) Difficulty: Strenuous Best time of year: Fall, Winter, Spring Last hiked: 2016 March The Piestawa Peak hike is one of the favorites among locals in the Phoenix area. It’s a strenuous and rugged climb up over 1,000 feet in just over a mile. Steep rocky staircases become a regular occurrence on the trail, together with …