The Charles M. Christiansen Memorial Trail is the furfect dog-furiendly hike for you and your poochie if you are in the Phoenix area and have the whole day to kill. The trail is 10.7 miles one way, so if you plan on going out and back instead of getting a ride back, plan for at least an eight-hour hike. This means bringing plenty of H20 for you and your poochie, as well as baggies to pick up after your doggo. Although water is provided at the trailhead, you will only find a few restrooms and water access along the way.
What you will find on the trail are some of the most pawesome views of the Phoenix Mountain Preserve from the beginning at North Mountain Visitor Center on Seventh Avenue, to the end at North Tatum Boulevard. The trail is mostly off the grid, so don’t plan on using your GPS or phone during this hike. Rely on trail markers, a good old-fashioned map, and even a compass. Although you can see the mountains, you don’t have to worry about too much of an incline anywhere along the path since the elevation gain is only 790 feet throughout the entire 10.7 miles.
However, there are some places along the trail where you will be fairly close to town, but it is not close enough to make the wilderness seem less wild. And you will pawsitively see some little critters on your walk so keep your canine companion on a leash at all times. You fur sure don’t want to have to go chasing them through the woods. There are a lot of wildflowers and other plants along the way as well including bladderpod, poppies, lupine, scorpionweed, and cacti.
You and your furever friend do not have to worry about crossing any busy streets either since there are tunnels under Seventh Street, Cave Creek Road, and State Route 51. If you do not want to do the whole 10.7 miles, there are a few places you can bail out along the way like Mountain View Park, Cave Creek Road, Dreamy Draw Park, and 40th Street. Some of these stops also have restrooms and water access for your convenience.