With spring already upon us and summer around the corner, we’ve been thinking about getting out and hiking. But the one thing Chandler has in abundance are hiking trails; so which ones are the best to hit? We took some walks, took in the views, and drank lots of water to figure it out for you – so without further ado, let’s hit the trails.
The Veterans Oasis Park comes with 4 ½ miles of trails and combines park land, lake and wetlands/groundwater recharge basins. It also comes with four classrooms devoted to wildlife preservation/environmental awareness, as well as exhibit areas, an outdoor amphitheater, a nature store and an urban fishing lake! There’s great bird-watching there too. And get this – it even comes with a Solar System Walk. What’s that? It’s a series of monuments that are symbolic of huge objects in our solar system – making it a 2,500ft scale walk of the solar system! Right there you’ve got the best hiking in Chandler! That should be enough!
But it isn’t! Have you tried hiking in San Tan Mountain Regional Park? It’s over 10,000 acres and ranges in elevation from 1,400ft to over 2,500ft. That’s eight miles of trails for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. The wildlife there is amazing too – you’ve got reptiles, birds and mammals, oh my!
The Paseo Vista Recreation Area is our next stop. Did you know that for almost 30 years it was a working landfill? You wouldn’t know it today. They have a great dog park, an archery range, a playground and the views are pretty darn spectacular. They even host golf Frisbee so there really is something for everyone. This one comes highly recommended!
We then took a hike up the Hayden Butte Preserve. It’s not as long as the others but comes with beautiful views of downtown Tempe and is recommended if you want a quick hike. The trail has a pretty steep grade which is a great fat burner and it only takes about 15 minutes to get to the top. It’s located on the SE corner of Mill Avenue and Rio Salado Parkway and – fact fans – takes its name from Charles Trumbull Hayden who is often credited as being the founder of Tempe.
As we pause to wipe the sweat from our brow and figure out what huge dinner we’re going to eat tonight, it’s now up to you to figure out which hiking trails in/near Chandler you’re going to tomorrow. Happy trails!