Hiking the Mormon and Hidden Valley Trail in Phoenix with kids is a fun outdoor challenge and worth the hike!
This hike definitely isn’t easy, yet it’s also a good intro to more moderate hiking trails for kids. The first mile on the Mormon Trail is the biggest challenge, with a rocky path, and almost always uphill. Be prepared for switchbacks, and no shade. We took a couple breaks with the kids, which helped.
Once at the summit, we took the Hidden Valley loop clockwise. And this is where the real fun began! The kids 100% loved the tunnel, so much fun to scramble the huge rocks! Don’t miss the petroglyphs too. The trail continued with some boulder scrambling, a beautiful desert valley, and the famous Farman’s Pass before the loop reached Mormon Trail again and we headed down the mountain.
Our kid ages ranged from 3-10; the older four did fantastic, and the younger two benefitted from toddler carriers. That said, at a few parts it was safer to take the toddlers out of the carrier and work as a team to climb the boulders. Of note, after the tunnel (hiking clockwise on Hidden Valley Loop), the trail seems to dead end. Just climb over the boulders and you will see the trail continuing! There is another similar section before you reach Fatman’s Pass as well.
Hiking the Mormon and Hidden Valley Trail in Phoenix With Kids
A few tips:
- parking is at 8610 S 24th St, Phoenix, AZ 85042; if full, you can park around the neighborhood
- no restrooms or water at the trailhead
- we logged 4.3 miles, and total hiking time was about 3.5 hours
- highly suggest doing this hike in the morning, returning to the trailhead by 1pm as it gets warm fast!
- again, this is not an easy hike. We’d rate it as moderate, with a few difficult parts. Good for kids? Yes – if your kids are use to hiking! They don’t need to be pros, just able bodied.
- watch for mountain bikers. They can appear quickly.
- if need a fantastic lunch option after the hike, check out The Farm at South Mountain!
- AllTrails has more information about this hike.