Like clockwork, the world-famous fountain in the center of Fountain Park in Fountain Hills, Arizona launches a stream of water 560 feet into the sky at the top of every hour. While not as mysterious as the Old Faithful geyser in Yellowstone National Park, it’s every bit as impressive – and about five times taller.
Most people who come to admire the fountain from the lush park that surrounds the lake. (Heads up – it’s also a disc golf course.) But if you’re looking for a little more adventurous way to take in the sights of Fountain Hills, I suggest you lace up your hiking shoes (or sneakers) and set foot on the scenic 2-mile Lake Overlook Trail Loop.
On the Fountain Hills Lake Overlook hike you can expect to see:
- Many varieties of cactus plants that bloom in season
- Arizona state tree: Palo Verde
- Buckhorn and Teddy Bear cholla (aka jumping Cholla)
- Geckos, lizards and birds native to the desert
- Red Mountain, Four Peaks and McDowell Mountains
Fountain Hills Lake Overlook hike summary:
- Length: 2 mile loop
- Difficulty: Easy to moderate
- Precautions: Rugged shoes and 1 liter of water recommended
- Trailhead location: Fountain Park, north end
- Pass/permit required: none
Where does Lake Overlook trail start?
Lake Overlook Trail is accessible from several spots near Fountain Park. I recommend beginning your hike from the trailhead at the intersection of North Saguaro Blvd and Panorama Drive at the north end of the lake. You can park nearby in the parking lot that serves Parkview Tap House and Phil’s Filling Station (a truck stop-style diner).
How long is Lake Overlook trail in Fountain Hills?
The Relive hike tracking app on my smartphone indicated the total loop was exactly 2.0 miles. That included a short jaunt down to water’s edge in Fountain Park to watch the fountain soar high above the lake.
How much does it cost to hike Lake Overlook Trail?
Nada! There’s no charge to access the trail or to park nearby. Want to show your appreciation to the city of Fountain Hills and its residents for making this wonderful experience available to visitors? Build in time to patronize businesses in town.
Video: Preview what you’ll experience on the Lake Overlook hike
Here’s something you don’t see on many hikes in Arizona: A sparkling clean restroom.
I’m not in the habit of taking pictures of restrooms during my travels. That changed when I came across this sparkling clean facility, located at the north end of Fountain Park. It’s one of the most inviting public restrooms I’ve ever encountered. Notice the clean water “fountains” for both humans and canines. How appropriate in a town named Fountain Hills.
Fountain Hills, Arizona has earned a reputation as a sleepy, affluent community off the beaten path. I took some time to explore the surroundings and discovered there’s much more to do than watch a fountain go off once an hour. One of the gems I found was Lake Overlook Trail. I really enjoyed it and I think you will, too.