First up on our must-visit list in Phoenix is the stunning and iconic Camelback Mountain, the 2,700-foot mountain named for its resemblance to a kneeling camel with two humps.
Camelback Mountain is the most popular urban hiking spot in Phoenix, located within Echo Canyon Park halfway between Scottsdale and the Phoenix Mountain Preserve. During your visit to the mountain, you will have the opportunity to hike two major trails, Echo Canyon and Cholla, as well as an easy option with Bobby's Rock Trail. The most popular trail is the Echo Canyon Trail, a steep 1.2-mile incline that allots a 1200 foot gain in elevation for hikers. The second option is a slightly easier 1.5-mile gradual inclined hike along the Cholla Trail.
Whichever trail you decide to take it is important to remember to bring plenty of water, wear sunscreen, and consider taking your hike in the morning hours. It is also important to remember to turn around whenever your water supply is halfway depleted.
Along the way on your hike, you will get to see typical Sonoran desert flora and fauna such as cottontail rabbits, antelope squirrels, various snakes, Saguaro Cacti, Creosote bushes, and Teddy Bear Cholla. This is a great way to immerse your student group into typical desert life and teach them about the environment and the living things within it.