Top Dog Trails near Phoenix, AZ

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Phoenix is bursting with dog-friendly hiking trails where you can explore with your pooch, mostly in the desert outside Phoenix and Scottsdale. Don't fear you'll be trudging through sand dunes the whole way, though. This isn't the Sahara, after all! On the contrary, Phoenix's interesting and historic trails stretch through picturesque valleys and dry gulches, up and down mountains of varying sizes, and some on city streets before heading out into the rough. While taking Fido out for a hike in 90-degree or higher temperatures requires some special preparations, there are cooler times of the year when the pup will be fine! Here are our top trails near Phoenix!

#10 Maxine Lakin Nature Trail

For a woofderful stroll in a bit of nature without leaving the city, this gorgeous mile long trail begins in Mountain View Park and ends in the Sunland Heights neighborhood. Winding near North Mountain, the uphill climb to the peak is rocky, surrounded by wildflowers and cacti, and is sure to give you and your pup a workout. Once at the top, take a pause to enjoy the views of downtown Phoenix.

#9 Lost Dog Wash Trail

You don't need to be an architect to marvel at Taliesen West, Frank Lloyd Wright's winter home and school. From the Taliesen Overlook at the end of Lost Dog Wash Trail, you and your furbaby can look down at it from 350 feet while hawks drift above in search of lunch. This trail is easy to follow and navigate, perhaps giving the two of you a breather from the rocky, steep hillside trails surrounding you.

#8 Hawks Nest Trail

The Hawks Nest Trail begins at the Desert Vista Trailhead in the Sonoran Preserve. Whoever named Desert Vista was right on target! Some of the most furtabulous views of the desert around North Phoenix can be had here. Hikers, bikers and horse riders love this trail because of its views and short .4-mile length. Its steady rise from the desert floor won't tire you and your pup out so much that you can't enjoy the dramatic puporama! 

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#7 Hidden Valley Trail at South Mountain Park

If climbing rocks and trekking through natural tunnels thrills you and your pack, this trail in South Phoenix is for you. Thrill to the trail's impressive desert vegetation and its up-and-down terrain, descending into the basin that is Hidden Valley. Towering saguaro cactus await, along with dry river washes and monstrous granite rocks. Lizards bask in the sun, but are quick to scoot when they notice your furbaby! 

#6 Tom's Thumb Trail

Phoenix's closest neighbor, Scottsdale, is where you and your pooch will find the Tom's Thumb Trail rising from the city streets to the base of the granite slabs which give it its name. Its hard, smooth natural surface is easy on your pup's feet, and the birds and other wildlife will make it fun for canine sniffers! Some steep climbs will test Fido's stamina, so it's impawtant to bring plenty of water and take occasional rests.

#5 Quartz-Ridge Trail

Full of wildlife, wildflowers and pawsome views of both the Phoenix skyline and surrounding mountains, you and your fur-buddy will never get bored on this trail! Some ups and downs keep you both in pawrfect shape!  A leash will keep your pooch safe while sniffing and pulling toward all the smells! Watch out for mountain bikes, too! You can turn back when you reach the intersection with the Ruth Hamilton Trail, or continue on for more adventure!

#4 Dreamy Draw Nature Trail

The Dreamy Draw Loop Trail is pawrfect for people and leashed pups looking for a hike right in the city that offers enough adventure and exercise to make it interesting, but not impossible. It's a 4-mile loop within the Dreamy Draw Recreation Area, with lots of side trails for variety! Short climbs and rocks provide the challenge, and the reward is a furbulous view of downtown Phoenix and, at the right time, the setting sun!

#3 Go John Trail

Located within Cave Creek Regional Park in nearby Cave Creek, this looped trail stretches about 6 miles, more than enough to get your hearts racing and tongues lolling! Thrilling landscapes and flowers, plus tall and imposing Saguaro cactuses will give you plenty to gawk at when you aren't wisely checking your footing on this rocky trail! You might encounter horses and bicycles, so keep the pooch firmly leashed, and take plenty of water.

#2 Waterfall Canyon Trail

If you and your pup are hankering for a hike with built-in adventure and refreshment, this 2-mile trail in White Tank Mountain Regional Park in Waddell has your names on it! Not only will you get to climb and scramble about on the scores of large and small rocks, but you'll also be treated to a splash in the shallow pool below the hidden waterfall at the end! Woofderful!

#1 North Mountain National Trail

Dog-friendliness abounds on this trail! Paved going up its 885 -foot climb, and rocky going down, both you and your pup will definitely be tired when you're done! Panoramic views of Phoenix's valley and surrounding mountains will stun you while your pupster sniffs about for small critters like lizards, snakes, and jackrabbits, and notices the surprisingly bold buzzards and hawks overhead. Desert wildflowers and scrub provide some welcome variety to the bleached rockiness around you!