McDowell Sonoran Preserve, Scottsdale

4.8
#2 of 22 in Parks in Scottsdale
Wildlife Area · Hidden Gem · Nature / Park
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McDowell Sonoran Preserve spans 12,150 hectares (30,000 acres) of protected desert terrain, with over 190 km (120 mi) of multi-use trails. Five trailheads offering hikes of varying difficulty and length will take you through different regions of the park. Explore the trails by foot, by bike, or on horseback, and you'll see cacti forests, wildlife, and mountain ranges. This huge preserve is geologically diverse, made up of a mixture of 1.7 billion-year-old metamorphic rocks, granite, and volcanic deposits. The preserve provides a safe home to desert plants and animals near an urban environment and connects to Tonto National Forest and McDowell Mountain Regional Park, creating a continuous wildlife corridor. Use our Scottsdale vacation website to add McDowell Sonoran Preserve and other attractions to your Scottsdale vacation plans.
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McDowell Sonoran Preserve reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
1,130 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • We are senior citizens and we were able to comfortably walk two of the trails (despite the heat!) The accessible trail is easy and informative as there are numerous signs giving information about the....  more
    We are senior citizens and we were able to comfortably walk two of the trails (despite the heat!) The accessible trail is easy and informative as there are numerous signs giving information about the....  more »
  • It’s a nice quick attraction best for families with small children. It has some interesting pieces to view such as a rail car from the period and a huge railroad replica. 
    It’s a nice quick attraction best for families with small children. It has some interesting pieces to view such as a rail car from the period and a huge railroad replica.  more »
Google
  • Made the mistake of casually trying to hike at 12:30 in the afternoon. Not recommended. However I would HIGHLY recommend a hike out here. It's not as casual as Papago Park, but I liked this place better because it's so "natural". So "untouched". You see plenty of other hikers, but you feel like you're out in the elements. Which you are. Lots of dessert plants and some animals. Some GREAT information along the trails.
  • A beautiful kept trail. Really neat. No great view points. I might be biased specially coming from the north east . But the views are okay .. but might have been really cool if we had seen a snake or goat.. it gets hot specially after 11 am in April.. but it is good decent workout.. not the most difficult it is lower end of moderate hike..

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