Difficulty: Easy to difficult
Starting elevation: Park sits at 2,000 feet
Contact: 480-982-4485, pr.state.az.us/parks/lodu/index.html, Lost Dutchman SP, 6109 N. Apache Trail, Apache Junction, AZ 85119
Driving directions: Head west on W. Washington Street toward N. 1st Avenue. Take the 1st left onto S. 1st Avenue. Take the 1st left onto W. Jefferson Street, and then merge onto I-10 east. toward Tucson. Take exit 154 to merge onto US60 east toward Mesa-Globe. Take exit 196 for AZ-88 east/Idaho Road. Turn left onto S. Idaho Road, and then take a slight right onto AZ-88 east/N. Apache Trail. Destination will be on the right.
Park info: Named after the fabled lost gold mine, Lost Dutchman is located in the Sonoran Desert at an elevation of 2,000 feet. The park offers a variety of hiking trails, nature trails, picnic facilities, 72 campsites, a dump station, restrooms, showers, and group use areas. The visitor center sells maps and other publications.
Trail description: At Lost Dutchman State Park in Apache Junction east of Phoenix, several trails lead from the park into the Superstition Wilderness and surrounding Tonto National Forest. Take a stroll along the Native Plant Trail, a 1/4 mile trail that features desert plants along an accessible paved trail. For a challenge, try the Siphon Draw Trail to the top of the Flatiron. This trail is a 4 mile roundtrip, very scenic hike that winds up into a canyon known as Siphon Draw. It is also possible to hike up the Flatiron (5.8 miles roundtrip), although it is not a designated, maintained trail all the way. It’s advised that only experienced hikers in good shape attempt to hike to the top, as the climb is steep and difficult to follow. Allow at least five hours to the Flatiron and back. Complete park information as AZStateParks.com/Parks/LODU.
Note: Before you hike, be prepared with enough water and proper footwear, as the trails are steep and challenging.