Scottsdale’s Best Bike Paths

Scottsdale has no shortage of winding trails, bike lanes and paved paths for bicyclists.

With about a month to go until temperatures could reach triple digits, now is the time to take advantage of the city’s pedal appeal.

The League of American Bicyclists, which represents bicyclists nationally, named Scottsdale a gold-level community. No other Valley city or town shares this distinction.

Scottsdale’s paved paths and unpaved trails are all shared use, so they are open to bicyclists as well as pedestrians and equestrians, said Susan Conklu, senior transportation planner with the city.

The Republic made a list of its favorite biking spots in Scottsdale:


1) Indian Bend Wash path

The Indian Bend Wash is the most popular shared-use path in Arizona, according to Scottsdale.

One trip and it’s easy to see why.

The path now extends 22 miles, Conklu said. It meanders past lush green expanses, parks and lakes from Scottsdale’s WestWorld event center south to Tempe Town Lake.

Conklu noted that each arterial street along the path has a grade-separated crossing, such as bridges or tunnels that go over and under the roads.


2) Canal banks

The canal banks in Scottsdale are some of the most popular in the Valley.

The Crosscut Canal and Arizona Canal paths pass through Scottsdale.

A stretch of the Arizona Canal path from 60th Street to Goldwater Boulevard wrapped up in September.

The path connects to the Crosscut Canal path at Indian School Road, and continues to Tempe, Conklu said.

In 2015, Scottsdale has funding to build the Arizona Canal path from Chaparral to Indian Bend roads, she said.

Private developers are finishing up a stretch of the path from Camelback to Chaparral roads, Conklu said.


3) Preserve trails

Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve boasts more than 100 miles of trails, which are open to bicyclists.

Popular spots for mountain bikers include the newly opened Brown’s Ranch trailhead, 30301 N. Alma School Parkway, and the Sunrise access area, 12101 N. 145th Way.

The trails range widely in skill, difficulty level and terrain.


4) Street lanes

The city is always rebuilding its streets to add bike lanes and other extras.

For example, Indian School Road underwent construction to add bike lanes, wide sidewalks, landscaped medians and public art, Conklu said.

Similarly, Indian Bend Road was rebuilt with a bridge over Indian Bend Wash. The award-winning project includes bike lanes, sidewalks, a path crossing and art.

This year, crews are working on a streetscape project along Thomas Road between 73rd Street and the Indian Bend Wash.

The construction, which started in late December and will last about a year, will make safety improvements to the median and turn lanes and add bike lanes, sidewalk improvements, landscaping and art, according to Scottsdale.

Construction is on hiatus for spring training, a city official said.


5) Pima path

The bike routes and paths run along Pima Road’s north-south corridor south of Shea Boulevard.

The path offers nearly 9 miles of bike facilities, Conklu said.

Pima path also connects to the Arizona Canal path, she said.

By building stretches of path near intersections, Scottsdale connected residential roads running parallel to Pima Road for bikers and pedestrians to use, Conklu said.

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