The Supes, as locals call the range, soar above all other Phoenix-area crags in both height and spirit. The western cliff faces — the volcanic rock colored a soft brown — rise to more than 5,000 feet and can be seen from most anywhere in metro Phoenix. In rainy weather, they brood like dark giants, their upper reaches in the clouds. This is the Valley’s Yosemite, a place of incredible vistas, gravity-defying rock hoodoos, and a lush Sonoran ecosystem that’s home to elusive desert animals like coatimundis, javelinas, and bighorn sheep. Don’t mistake this federal wilderness preserve for just another mountain park. It comprises about 240 square miles — bigger than Scottsdale and Tempe combined. Take it easy on the short trails around Lost Dutchman State Park, gazing in awe at circling hawks and plains that erupt with color in wildflower season. Or take it hard, pushing your physical limits to the top of steep trails like Siphon Draw. Rock climbers can challenge themselves here on the tallest routes in the Phoenix area. Whatever you do, be prepared for adventure — and that means taking enough water for your hike, especially if the weather is warm. Every few years, people searching for the fabled Lost Dutchman’s Gold Mine traipse deep into Superstition Mountains with homemade treasure maps — and are never seen alive again. But don’t fret — most Superstitions visitors enjoy this natural treasure without any problems bigger than a blister. You’ve seen them from afar — now go experience them at their best, up close and personal.