SouthMountain Ahwatukee AZ June 1 2020

Running along the south side of Phoenix is South Mountain Park with miles of hiking trails, desert wildlife, hidden canyons and Indian petroglyphs. A favorite run is the Telegraph Pass trail from the southern parking lot in Ahwatukee out to the Pyramid and back. Most commonly seen are the birds; white wing doves, cactus and canyon wrens and Gambels quail. There are coyotes and chipmunks and some friends have seen Javelinas. Reptiles include Chuckwallas, Gila Monsters, various little lizards, coral snakes and diamond back rattlers. Click to learn about the origin of the Saguaro


The Saguaro cacti bloom in late spring in the Sonoran Desert. They produce fruit clusters on the crown of their main trunk and arms, depending on their age. And every spring White Wing Doves hang out on the cactus crowns. At times it seems most cacti have their own resident dove.

white wing dove

White wing dove on Saguaro crown


Fido and lizard man petroglyphs on the Telegraph Pass trail. Its a fairly easy walk up to this point then it gets a lot steeper. South Mountain has hundreds of petroglyphs. After tracking down a lot of them they're mostly where you would wait for someone else or rest up before hitting the trail ahead. There's also one nice flat area on the ridge that would have been a great picnic spot.


At the same sight just to the left of Fido.

There must be more comfortable places than this for romance

Pyramid view

Looking back along the track from the Pyramid.


Some of the hill houses in western Ahwatukee with the Estrella Mountains and valley of the Gila river in the background. Looking SE from South Mountain. Looks like an early dust devil across the valley.