Park has reopened - trails in Tonto National Forest remain closed. Masks are required when visiting the park. Please also wear a mask while recreating outside if social distancing cannot be maintained. Until further notice: Day use parking is limited. Weddings and day use groups are limited to 25 people or less, must practice social distancing, and register ahead of time with park staff. Dump station and showers are closed to anyone not camping at the park. FIRE BAN now in effect - no campfires or smoking (except in an enclosed vehicle).
Ask A Ranger
Ever wondered what it's like to be a ranger? Have any burning questions about your favorite parks? We're here to help! Rangers at Lost Dutchman State Park are passionate about ranger life and Arizona's beautiful places. They know how to get the most of your time spent outside in Arizona and can't wait to share their knowledge with you!
Want to learn about a particular trail? Maybe you have questions about park plants or wildlife...We've made it easier than ever to learn about Arizona and how you can enjoy the full potential of this beautiful state! Now you can contact a ranger by email and get answers to your questions! Just send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and a park ranger will get to back to you—your question may even be featured in LIVE "Ask a Ranger" chats on Facebook! If you miss the live broadcast, don't worry—you can watch the replay on Facebook or Instagram!
Tune in at 8:00 a.m. on September 19, 2020 on Facebook to chat with rangers LIVE!
Frequently Asked Questions
Click the questions below to learn awesome park information and to inspire you to ask a question of your own at email@example.com.
The Superstition Mountains are actually the result of intensive volcanic activity. They are composed of volcanic ash, granite, dacite, basalt, various rock fragments, and some conglomerate. 25 million years ago, during the mid-tertiary period, volcanoes in this region emitted about 2,500 cubic miles of ash and lava. The volcanoes collapsed into their partly emptied magma chambers, producing depressions or calderas. A subsequent up-thrust of thick lava within the largest of these calderas and the forces of erosion have created the Superstition formations that we see at the park today.
We make our daily rounds (several times a day), open the visitor center, clean the restrooms, and then special assignments based on specific ranger roles and park needs (I.e. interpretation, retail, fix a leak, etc). They are many... A few include park maintenance, visitor contact, and compliance.
During the 1840s the Peralta family of northern Mexico supposedly developed rich gold mine(s) in the Superstitions. According to legend, the large party was ambushed by Apaches, and all were killed except for one or two Peralta family members who escaped into Mexico. In the 1870s Jacob Waltz, "the Dutchman" (actually a native of Germany), was said to have located the mine through the aid of a Peralta descendant. Waltz and his partner, Jacob Weiser worked the mine and allegedly hid one or more caches of gold in the Superstitions. Many versions of the "Lost Dutchman Mine" story exist, and several books and films have been done on the subject.
Lost Dutchman State Park is located in the Sonoran Desert and the activities found here will help visitors gain a deeper understanding of this wild and beautiful area. The numerous trails in the park (and associated National Forest Land) lead hikers and mountain bikers into areas where native flora and fauna are on display in their natural environment. A variety of desert plants, cacti, wildlife, and birds are showcased to enlighten visitors, and park rangers are available to answer questions that may arise from your outdoor pursuits within the park.
Yes! There are a variety of hiking opportunities throughout the park and adjacent National Forest Lands. Trails vary from beginner to advanced and really show off the beauty of Lost Dutchman! With so many trail options, there really is something for everyone at this diverse hiking park!
Water (more than you think you need), plenty of snacks, sun protection, good shoes, cell phone for maps and emergency calls, and a hiking buddy are at the top of the list. A pocket tool is also helpful to remove cholla spines and a small first aid kit might come in handy too! Also, let someone know where you’re going and your anticipated time of return.
There are a variety of wildlife species, both big and small, that can be experienced by lucky visitors to Lost Dutchman. Be prepared whether in camp or on the trail for an awesome experience, you never know when an encounter will present itself! Among the more popular animals to see are desert mule deer, javelina, coyotes, and the occasional bobcat. More likely, visitors will have ample chances to see desert cottontails and a variety of lizards enjoying the park during their visit.