Squaw Peak is located in the very heart of the city and part of the Phoenix Mountain Preserve Parks. It has been called Squaw Peak for over one hundred years. It was recently renamed Piestewa Peak after Lori Piestewa; the first native American woman killed in combat while in Afghanistan, 2003. Once used by ancient Indians, the mountain area is now visited by over 1000 hikers & cyclists a day. Originally most trails were developed for horses and are still frequented by equestrians, living nearby or trailered in.
Squaw Peak is over 2600 feet above sea level and is the highest point of the Phoenix Mountain Preserve. Hikers can get 360 degree views of the entire valley. The beauty of the peak is that it offers something for everyone: strenous trails for the athlete or medium & mild trails, lush desert foliage in the spring, picnic areas and natural wildlife for the spectator.
Originally the Peak was used for mining & grazing. The Dreamy Draw area was named as such from the effects the mercury mines had on it’s miners. In 1959 the city of Phoenix took possession of the mountain area in an effort to preserve the city’s mountains from developement. After a voter approved bond issue, the featured Summit Trail was rebuilt w/ native rock retaining walls to curb erosion. Later Dreamy Draw Park was added w/ ramadas, restrooms, riparin nature walks, water troughs & hitching posts.