Bell Pass and Windgate Pass Loop Trail

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Bell Pass and Windgate Pass Loop Trail

Hiking Trail

Bell Pass and Windgate Pass Loop Trail

by: Honza
Location:  Scottsdale, AZ          Longitude:  -111.8586    Latitude:  33.6495
This loop is a great alternative to the Bell/Windgate Passes in/out trails; completing a loop between the two pass trails.
Flora/Fauna on this Trail:
  Saguaro  Saguaro
Please see the descriptions of the Bell Pass and Wingate Pass trails for the west part of this loop.

With over 2100 ft of elevation gain, this is a great loop for those looking for a bit more than the 2 pass trails can offer. By combining the two pass trails, this loops adds about 2 miles onto the two pass trails.

Heading east from Bell Pass, you will be amazed by the views eastward, opening up to the Superstition Mountains and Four Peaks. This area is less used, and gives you a great feeling of open space and remote wilderness. As the elevation changes, plus the natural rain barrier of the mountains/passes, the vegetation differs by adding more shrubs and grasslands to the flora mix, but you still get the open fields of poppies in Spring/Fall.

Once you reach the lower valley of the loop marked with the Windmill Trail turn-off, make a left, climbing gently for the next mile to the Windgate Pass.
Trail Distance:  9.7 miles round-trip
Elevation:  1720ft - 3218ft   (change 1498ft)
Trail Difficutly:  Difficult - good physical fitness is a must, large elevation changes
How Crowded:  Occassional passing
Season:  September to May
Accomodations: (on site)   Toilets  WaterLocated in northern Scottsdale off the Thompson Peak Parkway/Gateway Trailhead: 18333 N Thompson Peak Pkwy, Scottsdale, Arizona 85255Paved road or trail to the trailhead
Bell Pass Trail via Gateway Loop   -   Moderate : 7 miles long : 1720ft to 3218ft (change 1498ft)
Windgate Pass Trail via Gateway Loop   -   Difficult : 7.7 miles long : 1721ft to 3045ft (change 1324ft)
Gateway Loop Trail   -   Moderate : 4.39 miles long : 1720ft to 2413ft (change 693ft)
Tom's Thumb   -   Moderate : 5 miles long : 2700ft to 3800ft (change 1100ft)
Pinnacle Peak Trail   -   Moderate : 3.55 miles long : 2380ft to 2889ft (change 509ft)
Trail Ratings and Comments