★★★☆☆ Easy / Phoenix Area:
Hey History Buffs, the unique Cave Creek Cave hike is taylor made for you! Tucked into private land along the banks of Cave Creek is the historically significant cave that both the creek and town were named for. Thankfully, Desert Foothills Land Trust has preserved this important site. And they conduct informative hikes six times a year.
TRAILHEAD: only accessible via Guided Tour • DIFFICULTY: EASY • DISTANCE: 1 MILE ( 2 MILES RT) • APPROX. TIME: 2 – 2.5 HOURS • ELEVATION GAIN: minimal • APPROX. CALORIES BURNED: 260-300 • BEST TIME OF YEAR: Six tours offered October through April • PETS: no • KID FRIENDLY: YEs • FACILITIES: no • FEES: free
If you’ve ever wondered where Cave Creek gets its name, the mystery is solved! The town is named for an ancient cave tucked into the banks of Cave creek. Over the centuries this cave has born witness to nomadic Native American inhabitants, early settlers, ranching claims, and political massacres.
Lucky for us, the Desert Foothills Land Trust has worked closely with area residents to preserve and protect the Cave Creek Cave. Six times a year they offer free guided tours, with the permission of the private landowners. These Fall to Spring tours provide excellent insight into the area’s rich past.
The hike is an easy one. It starts off meandering along the banks of the creek. Next it crosses the typically shallow water on plentiful stepping stones.
After reaching the opposite bank, the trail passes natural cliffs, lush, shaded enclaves and Javelina favored hang outs.
In a quick mile, the hike reaches its final destination, the Cave Creek Cave! Numerous petroglyphs on the cave’s walls reflect its use by early Native American tribes. Desert Foothills Land Trust does a fantastic job of recounting the Cave Creek Cave’s unique story with entertaining detail. You’ll hike out with a brand new appreciation of the area.
On the hike back be sure to check out the silhouette of Elephant Mountain (another great area hike) framing the horizon.
The Desert Foothills Land Trust partners with area residents and communities to conserve sensitive open spaces. Included are the Cave Creek, Jewel of the Creek, Black Mountain and New River Nature Preserves.
Directions Contact Desert Foothills Land Trust for detailed information on hike dates, times and location. Hikes are limited to 20 participants and fill quickly!
4 Responses to Cave Creek Cave Hike
When will the October hikes be open for enrollment?
Hi Bradley, I would suggest contacting the Desert Foothills Land Trust at (480) 488-6131. Hope you enjoy the hike.
It’s a pity that the US Cavalry massacured Apache Indians at this site.
And that Cave Creek glorifys it.
Our history is indeed fraught with injustices. The opportunity to learn about it is a valuable part of this guided hike.