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BEST ALL-SEASON CAMPING Phoenix 2003 - The Lost Dutchman State Park

According to legend, in the 1870s, Jacob Waltz ("the Dutchman") was said to have located a lost gold mine, then stashed his booty of gold somewhere in what's now the park. Waltz died in 1891, and since then, many people have tried to find the Lost Dutchman's Mine. Many disappeared, met with foul play, or were found dead, contributing to the legend of the mountains.

Located in the Sonoran Desert at an elevation of 2,000 feet, the park is still hot in the day, but it cools off at night to blanket weather. A variety of hiking trails, campsites and picnic facilities are available, depending on how close you want to get to nature. We recommend the Siphon Draw Trail if you're into scenic hiking, or the less strenuous Discovery Trail, which features a wildlife pond.

The area is also pocketed with ancient cliff dwellings and caves. In case you want to go looking for the Dutchman's gold, most stories place the gold in the vicinity of Weaver's Needle. Happy prospecting.

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