Camelback Mountain, a 2,704-foot peak that bears a remarkable resemblance to a kneeling camel, is one of Phoenix’s most visible and cherished landmarks. From the city’s earliest days, Camelback has been a magnet for promoters and developers, drawing Phoenix’s most colorful characters to it either for profit or rest. But these modern dreamers were not the first to come under Camelback’s spell. Many centuries ago, the earliest known inhabitants of the area made the mountain a sacred place. Today most hikers are unaware of the rich history that surrounds them as they explore the natural beauty of Camelback Mountain.
About the Author
Author and Arizona native Gary Driggs played a key role in preserving public access to Camelback Mountain for the more than 300,000 people who climb the 1.2-mile trail to the summit each year. In this volume, Driggs has gathered more than 200 imagesfrom such sources as the Arizona Historical Foundation, the Hayden Collection at Arizona State University, and his own private collectionto illustrate the players and events, the plant and animal life, and the geology that have made this landmark such an important part of the history of Phoenix as well as an ecological treasure.
Table of Contents
A Camel is Born 9
A Sacred Mountain 23
Almost a Reservation 27
The Arizona Canal and Early Development around Camelback 35
Urbanization of Camelback Mountain 55
Save Camelback Mountain Movement 93
Hiking Camelback 101
Climbing Camelback 111
About the Author 127