Phoenix Mountains Park and Recreation Area

The Phoenix Mountains Park and Recreation Area is a group of mountain parks located in and around the city of Phoenix, Arizona, USA. It has been designated as a Phoenix Point of Pride [cite web|url=|title=Phoenix Points of Pride|accessdate=October 18|accessyear=2006] .

The parks include:

* Dreamy Draw Recreation Area
* Lookout Mountain Preserve
* North Mountain Preserve
* Piestewa Mountain Park (formerly known as Squaw Peak Park)

These parks largely consist of small mountains and adjacent foothills that reach about 2,000 feet (roughly 600 meters) above the desert floor. They also interrupt the checkerboard pattern of Phoenix's built environment and are quite prominent, especially since most of the city is flat and gridded. Since the largest part of the Phoenix metropolitan area sits at just over 1,000 feet (around 300 meters) above sea level, that means most of the peaks reach about 3,000 feet (under 1,000 meters) above sea level.

Originally, the park system began with Piestewa Mountain Park and North Mountain Park as county parks. However, most of the existing municipal park system was acquired in the early 1970s when Phoenix's ever-expanding development threatened to encroach on these mountainous areas. All feature extensive hiking trails and many have public access areas with parking, ramadas (picnic tables) and restrooms. Some offer nearby horse stables where horses can be rented and ridden into the park.


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