Best Scrambling - 2013
Scrambling is sort of like bouldering, a rock-climbing activity that generally keeps the climber traversing low to the ground, in that it involves no ropes or safety gear beyond rock shoes and possibly powdered chalk for a drier grip. But with scrambling, you keep going up — if you can. Papago is possibly the most popular place in the Valley to do this, and we've seen people in flip-flops and tennies ascending ghastly faces of crumbly rock and gravel that we wouldn't climb in rock shoes. We don't aspire to such daredevil behavior — and neither should you. But the nice part about Papago is that with good judgment, there are many rocky areas that are good and steep for scrambling but so easy — in the right places — that nearly anyone can do it. Challenge your fears and the tread of your shoes on the friction slopes near Hole-in-the-Rock and the hills just east of the northern fairways of Papago Golf Course. For hikers and bikers in popular Papago Park, scrambling up the pink hills provides that extra thrill you crave on the trail.