Phoenix Summer 2017 Hiking Guide Tips Trails

In New Times’ 2017 Summer Guide, we’re exploring why we love the season — and why you should, too, whether you’re looking to party, get outside, or eat and drink your way through metro Phoenix.

For some, the swelteringly hot days of summer make a perfect excuse to hide away in the darkest, coolest place you can find. After all, why would anyone venture outside when heat seems to radiate off of every single surface and the sun beats down so strongly you can feel the weight of its rays on your neck?

But the truth is, there are plenty of reasons to love these long, hot Phoenix summers. There are even those of us who think the purple-pink sunrises make the perfect backdrop for an early-morning run and who revel in the chance to explore the Valley’s trails by night.

Yes, contrary to what you may have heard, you can enjoy the great outdoors in metro Phoenix all year long. And if you don’t believe it, we’re here to tell you how.

If running is your preferred way to enjoy the great outdoors, then know that even during the summer, you don’t have to go it alone. Phoenix runners don’t stop when the weather gets hot; they just get up earlier to take advantage of the cool-ish early-morning hours.

Arizona’s largest running club, Arizona Road Racers, hosts a five-race Summer Series that kicks off in May and ends in August. Held at various parks in Phoenix, Tempe, and Peoria, the races range from about three to four miles with entry fees starting at $25 for nonmembers. Hosted by Startline Racing, the Arizona Sunrise Series also runs from late May to August, with seven 5K races held all over the Valley from Scottsdale to Glendale. Runners can choose to register for single events for $30 or commit to the entire series for less than $200.

But whether you run alone or race hard, summer sprinters will need to work harder to stay healthy. A few basic tips include adjusting your pace to compensate for the weather (a fancy way of saying slow down) and planning routes that…

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