Desert Classic, South Mountain Park

Length: 9 miles, C2C
Descriptors: Classic, Desert, Wide, In-n-Out of Washes, Mild Tech, Fast & Fun
Access: Pima Lot, Desert Foothills Lot
Options: Out-n-back, Secret Lollipop, Lower Corona, Warpaint, Bronco, Sidewinder, Goat, Helipad!

The skinny: It’s called classic for a reason. Desert Classic, known affectionately as DC by locals, is a great escape from the city. A beautiful trail tucked into the south side of South Mountain. Perfect for the summer late evening ride.

Desert Classic on Trailforks.com



DC is a regular hike, bike and run for the masses. DC calls riders at all hours of the day; before work, during lunch, after work and into the lumen hours…

I’d been living in Phoenix more than seven years before I finally ventured out to Desert Classic at South Mountain. I’ve been riding South Mountain for years, but never opted to ride this Classic. From what I read it was the “easy trail” on SoMo and that’s all I knew about it.

Whether the trail is easy or not all depends on your fitness and skill. Yes, this trail is nothing compared to it’s big brothers National, Holbert, Alta, and Geronimo, but it’s still fun, fast and furious, and a singlespeeder’s hammerfest.

My favorite section of DC is the West end from the Desert Foothills lot. It’s more technical out West and closer to Helipad.

Here’s what you can expect out on DC… a great short video.

7 thoughts on “Desert Classic, South Mountain Park

  • March 29, 2012 at 1:34 pm
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    Fun trail, easy, simple. Good for riding with older kids/family.

    Not for people like Lance, who failed to notice the lack of double black diamonds :D

  • March 9, 2012 at 11:35 pm
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    Sorry but this trail sucked. When you pass several cyclocross bikes on your way out you know you should have brought your Segway and not a bike. The decent down Telegraph is another story :)

  • January 3, 2012 at 1:15 pm
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    Just tried this trail out for the first time yesterday (I’m pretty new to biking). It was really fun! I’ve been riding mostly the Usery Park trails so this was more technical than I’m used to but I had a blast! I will definitely be going back

  • March 25, 2010 at 8:12 pm
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    I live in Flagstaff and we stay at my mother in-law’s over the holidays and on weekends in the winter, she lives just off the Warner/Elliot loop. So I get to ride the DC and it is a blast. Tyson mentions going up Telegraph and down National, highly recommended, especially on Thanksgiving and Christmas days.

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  • September 22, 2008 at 3:17 pm
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    The Desert Classic Trail is quick and fun. Ride the Desert Classic trail to Telegraph trail and carry your bike up the hill and come back down on the National Trail. Gets pretty narly over the rocks. Have fun!

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