City looking at shuttle for Camelback Mountain hikers

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by Catherine Holland

azfamily.com

Posted on January 26, 2012 at 6:00 PM

Updated Thursday, Jan 26 at 8:26 PM

PHOENIX -- The city of Phoenix is kicking around the idea of giving hikers a ride to a popular hiking spot in an effort to deal with a major parking issue.

The trailhead at Camelback Mountain is so popular that parking at the base of the mountain can mean a long wait for hikers.

In an effort to solve that problem, the city is looking at engaging a shuttle service to and from Camelback Mountain.

Hikers and area residents alike have been asking the city for a solution for quite some time. While the hikers have trouble parks, those who live in the area have trouble getting to their homes because of the traffic.

There are several dozen spots at the base of the trailhead, but nowhere near enough to accommodate the number of hikers who hit the trail every day.

The board of the Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department is set to meet Thursday and is expected to recommend a shuttle contract. Another option is to expend nearby parking lots.

Right now park rangers are at Camelback Mountain during peak hiking times to help keep cars moving through the lot as opposed to sitting and waiting for a space to open up.

In addition, two separate companies run unofficial shuttle services. Both companies, neither of which is affiliated or endorsed by the city, started offering their services to hikers within the past six months.

The meeting is scheduled for 5 p.m. and will take place in the Phoenix City Council Chambers at 200 W. Jefferson St.

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