Parking at the Pima-Dynamite Trailhead is free and plentiful.
The Hawknest Trail
begins at the trailhead just to the right of the Axle Grease Trail
It wanders northeast, gaining elevation as it goes with numerous ups and downs. This is the most strenuous part of the loop.
Several miles in, there is a short side trip to Basalt Ridge Overlook. Shortly after, the end of the Stagecoach Trail
is reached via a half mile of the Malapais Trail
. The Stagecoach Trail
meanders north and then west slowly gaining elevation with gentle slopes. After several miles, the route crosses the powerline road, then turns right at the Dove Valley Trail
which becomes the West Express
at the powerline re-crossing. This begins the southbound return portion of the loop.
The descent of the West Express
is fast and fun, with numerous humps to cross which add to the fun. After a few miles, the West Express
transitions into the Axle Grease Trail
. (The continuation of the West Express
veers left at this point.) The Axle Grease Trail
continues the downhill southbound route, but with more twists and turns than the straight West Express
. The Axle Grease Trail
trail terminates back at the trailhead.
A map of the preserve is available online or at the trailhead. It is recommended to keep it handy to navigate the maze of trails in the preserve. Literally hundreds of loop options are available. The map is also online at the Scottsdale website.