Hike up Tom’s Thumb in Scottsdale, Arizona.  Get a workout and see the great scenery at the same time!

Get the group together for an adventure on the Scottsdale trail!

No, this is not the Tom you know, and this is definitely not his thumb. This is a different Tom’s thumb located at: 23015 N 128th St,
Scottsdale, AZ 85255. Phone: (480) 998-7971.  This is a popular hiking trail in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Last year, during summer, when I visited my parents, I took a different route. Passing through the sizzling city of Scottsdale, I saw a swarm of people walking in the same direction. With nothing better to do and a long drive ahead of me, I asked one of them where they were headed. They replied, “Tom’s Thumb Trail.” Somehow that name got stuck in my head. As the traffic lights turned green, I was on my way to my parents’ quaint home.

I Took a Wrong Turn

After a week at their place, I was making my way to the city when I found myself back on the streets of Scottsdale. I assumed I had accidentally retraced the directions I took when I came here.

As I drove through familiar routes, I arrived on the same street where I had met the group of hikers. The lights turned red, and sure enough, I saw the same sweaty crowd of people painting on the sidewalk. Finally, I made up my mind and asked if I could join them on their hike.

Our Hiking Begins!

At the advice of the group, I bought two bottles of water from a convenience store. Parking my car nearby, I hurried along after my new friends. Our journey began at the gateway trailhead, from where we walked our way through a bridge and a sidewalk to the real start of our hike. The real hike was much longer. The entirety of the hiking trail spanned 2.2 miles according to the signboard.

The first half-mile of it was deceptively easy. It was after we finished the first half that the climb started becoming extremely challenging. At this point, I understood the importance of carrying water while hiking. With no shade and no nearby water resources, I was sweating, panting, and squinting all at the same time. As I took gulps of the chilled water I had bought earlier, a look of relief crossed my face, and I felt good about my purchase. Now, mind you, I was still sweating, panting, and squinting, but somehow the trip had become much more enjoyable. On our way to the top, after going up and down hills and crossing a stream, we found ourselves at the mercy of a steep climb. Huffing and puffing, I breathed hard as I questioned my motivations for coming here in the first place.

Then as if the group could read my mind, they asked me to look away from the trail for a second, and I was welcomed by the panoramic views of the mountains and the city. Mesmerized by the beauty and magnificence of the scenery, my enthusiasm rose with each step I took. As we reached our destination, a boulder sat before us, and sure enough, it looked like a thumb.

After a few backs and forth with my companions, they explained to me that it was called Tom’s Thumb after the famous rock climber, Tom Kreuser. Definitely not the Tom I know. As I rested my back against the rock, I appreciated the full access I had to the scenic views of nature. After a while, I noticed a small route passing through it. “Tom’s Thumb Trail,” I said to myself.  I wonder if Brown’s Ranch Trail could even compare?