“The Spur Cross Trail provides great vistas of Tonto National Forest and the surrounding area.
— Michael Rigney
This trail is the first leg of the Cave Creek Cactus Classic mountain bike race held yearly on the second Saurday in November. After crossing normally dry Cave Creek, you'll climb steeply on an old dirt road and then head left on a narrow, well-maintained trail. Some sharp turns and rocky sections toward the end make this a rough trail for beginners.
All along the trail you'll experience the grandeur of the Sonroan Desert at its best. The route is also steeped in the history of the area. The Spur Cross Trail is named after the "dude ranch" which hosted guests from all over the world during the early part of the 20th century. Remnants of the ranch are visible on the right side of the trail as you begin to climb the first steep section.
The parking lot is the the old location of the Phoenix Mine which was one of the richest gold mines during the 1900's. At the summit of the trail, the Hohokam Native American ruins can be seen at the top of rocky promontory jutting from Elephant Mountain.
Desert wildlife abounds all along the trail, including the occasional diamondback rattlesnake during the warmer months.
As with all trails in the Sonoran Desert, bring more water than you think you'll need especially if you're not accustomed to the very dry desert air.