Peralta Canyon - Superstition Mtns
July 25, 2004


Today I hiked the Peralta Canyon Trail which goes from Peralta Trailhead to Fremont Saddle. Fremont Saddle provides a breathtaking view of Weavers Needle, a landmark rock formation. This is hike #23 in Stewart Green's book. Distance is 4.5 miles roundtrip and 1366' elevation gain according to Green, but I probably did 5.0 miles as I spent about an hour exploring the area around Fremont Pass. I began this hike at 8:30am and was back to my car at noon. Temperature was in the low 100s.

Photos are not necessarily shown in the order in which they were taken. Some of the "early" photos were taken "later" to take advantage of improved sunlight.

To reach the trailhead from Scottsdale, go south on 101, east on 60, then north on Peralta Road. (Peralta Road is just past mile marker 204.) The pavement ends after a mile or two; follow the dirt road 7.2 miles to its end at the trailhead. This photo was taken from the road. Even if you don't hike, you should take a drive to the trailhead as the scenery is spectacular.
When I arrived at the trailhead there were six or seven other cars in the parking lot. I passed about a dozen people hiking out as I was hiking in. When I returned to the trailhead, mine was the only car in the lot. I guess most Phoenix area residents choose to stay indoors during the day this time of year!
The trail goes up the canyon as shown here.
This is my first trip to the Superstition mountains.
Early view up Peralta Canyon.
Shortly into the hike there is little doubt where you are headed.
View from the trail.
Unusual rock formations abound...how did that rock get up there?
Looking down the canyon. The trailhead is around the bend to the right.
A storm blew through last night. There were signs of flash flooding on the trail, and some pools of water in the creek bed. I doubt this water will last long.
This was the only flowering cactus I saw, probably brought on by last night's rains.
View down Peralta Canyon.
View down Peralta Canyon.
This cave, not far from the pass, could provide welcome relief from the heat in time of need.
These rock formations are called "hoodoos" and they are found in abundance on the west wall of the canyon.
You continue hiking up the canyon and Fremont Pass greets you almost without warning and you are immediately rewarded with a spectacular view of Weaver's Needle.
Weaver's Needle from Fremont Pass.
Me at Fremont Pass with Weaver's Needle in the background.
See that tree? It's a simple hike to that tree from Fremont Pass. That point provides a closer look at Weaver's Needle.
There is room for a tent at the tree. It would be a spectacular - allbeit dry - campsite. I'm trying to imagine the night sky from this point....
Weaver's Needle.
Weaver's Needle.
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Copyright © 2004 by Bill Qualls. Last updated July 25, 2004.