“A great hike for the true explorer who loves 360-degree views and doesn't mind getting a bit off trail.”
— Heather Dunphy
This hike is less traveled than others in the area, so you'll be able to get away from the crowds. The trail is for the adventurous person who likes to go a little off the beaten path. Most of it is marked and the parts that are not marked can still be found by looking for cairns and using the Hiking Project mobile app
Need to Know
This is a difficult trail to follow even with the Hiking Project mobile app
. The peaks of the mountain are very narrow and if your GPS is off by a few feet you can end up in a dangerous spot. Cliffs, sliding rocks, and Africanized bees can be the result of a wrong turn. I'll post a picture of the narrow top and a very large Killer bees nest that I encountered.
Parking for this loop can be found at the free parking area at the intersection of Meridian Rd and McDowell Rd. From the trailhead, take the first left and connect to Pass Mountain Trail
From there, connect to Wind Cave Trail
. At the top of Wind Cave Trail
there is a sign that states the trail is not maintained. This trail is not marked, but there are some cairns that guide your way up to a couple of peaks in the Goldfields. One of the peaks is at 3,300 feet and is the third highest peak in the Goldfields. Enjoy great views!
The descent to Pass Mountain Trail
is not marked, but doable and takes you back around on an alternate set of trails to the parking lot. Overall, this is a great backyard adventure that avoids the crowds (except for the 1.5-mile section on Wind Cave Trail
, which can be busy). Enjoy!