Desert Pinnacle and Gateway

Found another Arizona written blog:  Pinnacle Point is one of the most unique rock shapes in the Scottsdale skyline. It is located in the central part of the McDowell Sonoran Preserve, and one place I remember from hiking here 20 years ago.  I hiked and took no pictures – only my memories remain. Maybe my husband took some pictures? It was all looking the same.

What surprises you about hiking in the desert? How do you protect yourself from the elements there? Have you ever been in danger in the desert? 

It was the hike (2 miles round-trip) that allowed us to see the incredible vistas of Happy Valley. There is a good climb at the beginning and scree rock haunted us on the descent. Houses abound with distinctive architecture all around.

North views were rewarded with multiple splotches of bright green golf courses. The eastern view to the far Superstition Mountains made me realize how much hiking there is in this area.  

“Was it through your know-how that the hawk learned to fly, soaring effortlessly on thermal updrafts? Did you command the eagle’s flight, and teach her to build her nest in the heights, perfectly at home on the high cliff face, invulnerable on pinnacle and crag? From her perch she searches for prey, spies it at a great distance. Her young gorge themselves on carrion; wherever there’s a road kill, you’ll see her circling.” Job 36:26-30 The Message

            Gateway Trailhead is centrally located to Scottsdale and one of the busiest trailheads we found in the Preserve. The path over the Gateway Saddle allowed us to see the mountains from the east side. Dark volcanic stone was a seam of rocks on the north side of the trail. 

It was 4.8 miles/7.2 km of rocky paths and a walking stick would have been a good idea. The cool breeze of the hidden part of the path counteracted the ugly smog covering the Phoenix valley on this early November pandemic hike.

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