White Tank Mountain Regional Park

Located at the west end of the Salt River Valley containing the Phoenix metropolitan area, White Tank Mountain Regional Park contains about half of the range for which it is named. This park is mostly wild, with less than 2% of its total area developed, but still offers everything from full-hookup RV camping, group picnic facilities under ramadas, and even an amphitheater and library! Established in 1961 and comprising 29,572 acres, it is the largest unit administered by Maricopa County Parks and Recreation.

The 10 Essentials

ACTIVITIES:

  • camping
  • equestrian
  • hiking
  • hunting
  • mountain biking
  • picnicking
  • trail running

HIGHLIGHTS:

33.5 miles of multi-use trails ranging from easy to strenuous

11 confirmed archaeological sites, including ‘Petroglyph Plaza’ and a Hohokam village

‘The Pond:’ a ‘safe harbor’ for the endangered Gila topminnow and desert pupfish

Seasonal waterfall!

HABITAT:

Sonoran desert; saguaro / paloverde communities.
Elevation ranges from 1315 – 4083’ at Barry Goldwater peak

AVAILABILITY:

Open year-round.
Ideal seasons are late fall – early spring.

AMENITIES:

230+ picnic tables with grills, some covered. 3 reservable group picnic areas with ramadas and restrooms
Playgrounds & volleyball court
Guided walks and interpretive programming.
RV / Group / tent / backcountry camping
Equestrian staging area
10-mile competitive track

PERMITS / FEES:

Park entry is $7/vehicle or annual passes are available for $85.
Hke / Bike / Equestrian entry is $2 or annual passes are available for $30.
Annual passes include access to all Maricopa County Parks.
Camping fees range from $15 – $300 / night, with a $7 non-refundable reservation fee.
A free permit is required for backcountry camping.
Additional fee information can be found here.

SPECIAL DESIGNATIONS:

The 315-mile Maricopa Trail passes through the park

ACCESSIBILITY:

Kid-friendly
Dog-friendly (must be leashed and licensed)
ADA: Facilities are accessible. Two trails featuring Native American historical sites are also accessible.

NEAREST SERVICES:

Surprise is the closest full-service city.

HEADS-UP!

Risks include: extreme heat, dehydration (bring LOTS of water!), exposure, flash flooding, rattlesnakes, numerous species of spiny cacti.. do NOT hug the teddy bear cholla!
Fire bans are in effect seasonally; gas stoves and grills are not allowed when there is an ‘extreme fire ban.’
Fires are not allowed anywhere outside of designated places.

Flora & Fauna

In addition to the ‘safe harbor’ for the endangered Gila topminnow and desert pupfish, the park also contains these species with special status:

  • Great Basin collared lizard
  • Gila monster
  • Saguaro
  • Abert’s towhee
  • Bald eagle
  • Arid tansyaster
  • Sonoran desert tortoise
  • Lobed fleabane
  • Gila woodpecker
  • Western burrowing owl
  • Melonleaf nightshade
Surprise
73°
Rain Shower
6:20am6:20pm MST
Feels like: 73°F
Wind: 7mph E
Humidity: 77%
Pressure: 29.97"Hg
UV index: 3
MonTueWed
86/70°F
90/66°F
86/66°F

Explore the park from the maricopa trail

Maricopa Trail sign

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