The Valley of the Sun is actually a great place to get outside. The city of Phoenix and Maricopa County has several mountain parks, one of which—South Mountain—is the largest municipal park anywhere in the United States. All these parks have easy-access areas for casual visits as well as trails through more remote desert. What’s more, the metro area ends at the bounds of expansive National Forest lands and wilderness areas, where endless exploration awaits.
Here are 5 hikes to celebrate Earth Day
Yavapai Point: Hike to a viewpoint over the blue water of Lake Pleasant, with desert flowers, wildlife, and a swimming spot along the way.
Camelback Mountain: Take on the steep ridge of Cholla Trail or the cliff-side staircase of Echo Canyon to the top of Scottsdale’s local mountain.
Massacre Falls: Wander past mining ruins in a land with eerie history, and find a seasonal waterfall in the Superstition Wilderness.
Siphon Draw to the Flatiron: Long hike and steep scramble to the top of the photo-famous cliffs above Lost Dutchman State Park.