Arizona Trailblazers Hiking Club
Malpais Loop Day Hike
when Trip Report : January 1, 2022
where San Tan Mountain Regional Park
the hike     San Tan Mountain Regional Park consists of over 10,000 acres in the lower Sonoran Desert. It is located just south of Pinal County line near Queen Creek but is managed by Maricopa County Parks and Recreation. Elevation within the park ranges from about 1,400 feet to over 2,500 feet. Goldmine Mountain is located in the northern area with a spectacular San Tan Mountain escarpment in the southern portion of the park.
    The vegetation varies from creosote flats to dense saguaro forest. Various types of wildlife may be observed, including reptiles, birds, and mammals.
    We will do an 8.8 mile lollipop style hike, setting out on the San Tan and Hedgehog trails, then the challenging Malpais trail loop and then return on the San Tan and Hedgehog Trails. The middle section of this hike includes a sandy section along the escarpment and is regarded as moderate to difficult. We will take a longer snack break at the halfway point.
distance 8.8 mile lollipop style hike.
The middle section loop includes a moderate to difficult sandy section.
time 6 hours
EC +-328' elevation change
elevation 1,400 feet
type lollipop loop
on trail 100% — San Tan, Hedgehog and Malpais Trails
rating "B"     Rate yourself as a hiker.
dogs allowed no
cost $7 for parking at San Tan Mountain Regional Park.
The club also allows voluntary contributions of $5 per non-member.
weather Queen Creek
meet 8:15 AM at the San Tan Mountain Regional Park Entrance Station and Nature Center.
We will meet at the San Tan Trailhead, which is the main entrance station and nature center, restrooms are also available. The San Tan Mountain Regional Park has three trailheads, so be sure to go to the correct one. The address is:
   6533 W. Phillips Rd.
   Queen Creek, AZ 85142
Entrance/Visitor Center: 602-506-2930 ext#7.
•  Take US 60 east to Ellsworth Road.
Go south on Ellsworth until it turns southeast and becomes the Hunt Highway.
Take the Hunt Highway to Thompson Road.
Turn right and go south on Thompson Road.
Turn right and go west on Phillips Road to the San Tan Mountain Regional Park.
The trailhead has nice restrooms available as well as a visitor/nature center/gift store.

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updated January 3, 2022 © Copyright 2022, Arizona Trailblazers.  All rights reserved.