Sunrise Mountain Trail in Peoria, Arizona

They don’t call this trail “Sunrise Mountain” for nothing. This hike is nestled in the city of Peoria is great for those living in the West Valley of Phoenix. Having hiked this about 3 times (and probably will more), I can say it’s a wonderful trail. It gives you the elements of the desert, but the 360 views around it give you the feel of being in the city too.

About this trail

Sunrise Mountain Trail is 4 miles long, has an elevation gain of 718 feet, and it is a loop type of route. It is considered a moderate trail. This is a dog-friendly trail but dogs must be on a leash.

When you first drive to this trail, you’ll notice you will be lead to WestWing Park, a friendly neighborhood park where a Jungle Jim is attached. This is where you want to park and as a reminder, don’t forget to save your parking location to your phone as this will always be a guide to help you find your hike down and where you parked. (My little tip and trick is to send my “Current Location” as a text to myself!) 

I recommend downloading the AllTrails map found above. This will help guide you throughout the hike from this start to the end, especially since this hike will have many different intersecting trails.

You might get a glimpse of hot air balloons floating over the mountains.
It was around the holidays when my friend Leslie (who came to visit me when I first moved to Arizona!) and I found Christmas ornaments hanging on trees.

This trail is easy to follow along at the start and there will be markings pointing to the Sunrise Mountain Trail to the Trailhead. The trails can change from very rocky to not as much, so focus on your footing especially as you go down. 

Within 0.6 miles, you can choose to go to the top where it’s more difficult to hike up to (and more to hike down to) or the other way where it’s easier and not as steep.

Walking all around the peaks, you will see views of (really) nice Peoria homes. There are 3 summits you can choose to take: the lower west summit, the main summit, and the lower southwest summit. When you reach the peaks, you will be at about 1,800+ feet elevation and the trail ways open up with more space up there. You can expect a good breeze there during winter time.

The best times to hike it

Of course with its name, it is best to hike it before and during sunrise, especially during the summertime so you can escape the high temperatures, but I personally loved seeing it more during sunset and witnessing the changes of the sky with the sun coming down. Especially when I came here during some windy weather at sunset towards the end of October.

If you’re looking to do photography, sunset will allow you to get the soft glow reflecting from the sun throughout the trails and peaks so it makes for great photos.

These sunset pictures I’ve displayed in this section were all taken from my new Sony camera, which gives you an idea of what a great example the trail is for sunset photography.

This hike is fun. It’s also solid to see it during any time of the day, even for night hikes. And for those homes located there, they have quite a backyard to explore.

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