South Mountain (Affectionately called “somo”) is a favorite climb among Phoenix cyclists, right in the south Phoenix metro area about a 20 minute ride from downtown.
A mild gradient makes for a great beginners climb - although the steep sections at the end make for a great workout.
Great Sonoran desert views
Definitely check out Holbert Lookout on the way up (closed to cars)
Gentle winding turns = great place to practice descending skills! However, the road is cracked in numerous places due to heat expansion, and can be a mildly bumpy ride.
The heat can be a real issue on this one. We’ve climbed it in the dead of summer in 105 degrees, and can confirm that it’s MUCH more enjoyable between October and April. There is water at the ranger station right at where we start the climb, but other than that there is no water on the mountain, so bring plenty and be careful, as heat stroke can be a real danger.
The radio towers at the top are visible from anywhere in Phoenix.
Every last sunday of the month is “Silent Sunday”, a day where no cars are allowed on the summit road - only cyclists!
That’s a wrap!
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