Double Butte Loop

Rating: 
Round Trip Distance: 2.9 miles
Difficulty: Easy
MTB Skill level:
Elevation: 1201 - 1315 feet
Cellphone: 3-5 bars
Time: 45 mins.
Trailhead: West Buttes Parking Lot
Fee: none
Attractions: Scenic buttes




The Double Butte Loop trail is located at Papago Park in Phoenix, Arizona. The trail begins near the West Buttes Parking Lot where it follows a route that takes it around both Big Butte and Little Butte before returning to where it began. Dog owners should note that all Phoenix Mountain Preserve trails are closed to pets when the temperature is at 100F or above.


To get to the West Buttes trailhead find your way to 626 North Galvin Parkway, across from the Phoenix Zoo, and follow the signs to the parking area. At present there is drinking water available at the trailhead but no restroom facilities.


The Double Butte Loop trail begins on the north side of the ramada.


Signposts with a blue 5 mark the trail making it easier to navigate your way throughout the park's many interconnecting trails.


For the most part the surface of the trail is hard packed and smooth.


Near the half mile point the trail comes upon the Elliot Ramada where it turns eastward to begin its loop around Big Butte. Route finding can be a little confusing as the Big Butte Loop cuts across the Elliot Ramada and 5k Fitness trails.


On the north side of Big Butte the trail makes use of the sidewalk as it passes by a small trailhead that is off of East McDowell Road.


Route finding again becomes a little sketchy as the trail travels around the west side of Big Butte where it once again crosses the Elliott Ramada and 5k Fitness trails.


After crossing its sister trails the loop begins working its way around the west side of  Little Butte.


There are a few shallow washes that add some variety to the trail as it takes a route along the fence that separates the trails from the golf course.


As the loop finishes up it comes to a junction where the Double Butte Loop, Elliot Ramada and 5k Fitness trails all come together. From that trail junction the road can be followed back to the parking area where the loop began. Other than some sketchy route finding the Double Butte Loop is a fun something to do. On the day that we were there taking photos for this post it was getting a lot of use from hikers, trail runners and mountain bikers. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.