Dutchman's Trail, Loop Backpack, Superstition Mountains, Arizona

Jornada Hiking & Outdoors Club
Jornada Hiking & Outdoors Club
Public group

Superstition Mountains

Peralta Trailhead · Apache Junction, AZ

How to find us

Follow I-10 past Deming, Lordsburg, and Tucson to the Picacho Exit #211, Take AZ-87 north, AZ-287 east, AZ-79 north, to Apache Junction. From Apache Junction, drive 8.5 miles east on US-60 to Peralta Road, FR-77. Follow FR-77 to the trail head.

Location image of event venue


The Superstition Mountains are a range of mountains east of Phoenix, Arizona. The mountain range is a federally designated wilderness area (1939) and consists of 160,000 acres. It is home to the legend of the Lost Dutchman's Gold Mine, and is part of the Sonoran Desert biome. The plan is to backpack the 16 mile Dutchman's Trail Loop.

We will leave the El Paso/Las Cruces area Saturday morning for the 6-7 hour drive to near the Peralta trail-head where we will car camp that night. Sunday morning we begin the backpack at the Peralta trail-head. Our scenic desert route is in a clockwise direction and passes the towering Weavers Needle. We hike for 8.7 miles to our campsite at La Barge Spring. Monday we continue the backpack for 7.3 miles to our starting point at the Peralta trail-head and then the return drive home.

4,553 foot Weavers Needle

Backpack Rating: Moderate to Strenuous

Length: 16 mile clockwise loop

Elevation Gain/Loss: 1,020 feet. Peralta trail-head is at 2,410 feet. The high point along our route is 3,430 feet.

Participants must be experienced and well equipped backpackers in good physical condition ready for everything from crowds to snow to rattlesnakes.

Water is available at several springs along the route: White Rock Spring, Charlebois Spring, Music Canyon Spring, La Barge Spring, Holmes Spring, and Crystal Spring. All water should be filtered.

Dogs are not allowed on this backpack. Ground fires within the wilderness are not permitted. You must use your cooking stove. A free-standing tent is recommended for this backpack.

Make your own driving arrangements or meet to carpool at the Starbucks/Kohls parking lot near I-10 and Redd Road at 8 am. I will leave at 8:30. It is an approximate 426 mile drive from EP to the trail-head, and 385 miles from LC.