Phoenix With Kids

Scorpion Gulch in Phoenix

Kim Gudykunst Ollerhead

Scorpion Gulch in Phoenix is a unique home located in South Mountain Park, and is a must-stop if you are in the area. Scorpion Gulch was built as a home and store by William Lunsford.

Lunsford’s store sold curios, Indigenous-made items, sodas, and candy. It was still in operation in 1966, iIn the 1970s, it became a bar. According to the Phoenix Historic Property Register, Scorpion Gulch was built in 1936, and was first listed on the historic preservation register in October 1990.

William Lunsford hauled every rock to the site to build this for himself and his wife. Around the neighborhood, William was known as “Grandpa”. He sold curios, Indigenous-made items, sodas, and candy. It is rumored that if he saw two kids drinking from the same pop, he would say it wasn’t sanitary and buy the second kid a drink. It is said that he gave away more candy than he sold. Neighbors were known to phone “Grandpa Bill” to alert him their kids were on the way to spend time at his spot enjoying candy and pop.

This spot is very popular for photo shoots, we were actually trying to stay out of numerous shoots while we were visiting.

We stopped by after a hike in the South Mountain area and the kids had a blast pretending it was their house. Note there is almost no shade, so I wouldn’t advise stopping here in the summer months. Also check out the Mystery Castle nearby, another great spot of Phoenix history!

Scorpion Gulch historical marker which reads “Scorpion Gulch Trading Post 1936”.

Scorpion Gulch

10225 S Central Ave

Phoenix, AZ 85042


  • Kim Gudykunst Ollerhead

    Kim is a chef, dishwasher, dry cleaner, housekeeper, landscaper, snack fetcher, photographer and personal assistant to toddler twins. Curently homeschooling her three year olds and loving teaching preschool. She loves exploring everything with her kids and photographing every minute of it. Follow her on Instagram @phoenixwithtwins.

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