Trail name: Wave Cave Trail
Location: Superstition Mountain Range near Gold Canyon, AZ
Distance: 3.5 miles out and back
Elevation Gain: 846 feet
Published Difficulty: Moderate
Dog Friendliness: Definitely safe for dogs to surf here
Catch the Wave Cave trail at the intersection of Carney Springs trailhead and Peralta Road. There are no signs in the parking lot for the trail itself, but you can’t miss the wide, blocked-off dirt road that makes up the first mile of this hike. Here, you’ll reach a wilderness fence line marking your entrance into the Superstition Wilderness. Go through the fence. No matter what the “trail” sign is telling you. Just go through the opening in the fence. It can be confusing.
Once through the fence, the trail gets a little more narrow, a little rockier and starts its ascent toward this desert wonder. While there is one sign along the way, the trail isn’t that well marked. Follow the cairns (or what looks to be the right way up the rock slide in a generally west-northwest direction) and you should start to see the cave opening to your left eventually. In fact, you’ll have glimpses of it intermittently along the way.
The cave itself is actually surprisingly deep and provides a very welcome respite from the sun and the relatively steep climb that you completed over the last 5 – 10 minutes. Once inside – well, I guess outside as well, technically – you will be able to take in an eye-candy of a view of the valley below.
Take a seat, eat a snack and snap a pic of the desert wave real quick before heading back down. But not before you pop your head into the “guest house” cave about 50 feet to the west. Sir Charles (the beast) was pleased.