Additional History and Area Information:
Initially part of an Indian reservation, Camelback Mountain saw increased encroachment from private development until the 1960s. The Preservation of Camelback Mountain Foundation, led by Barry Goldwater, helped to ensure the area's protection in 1968. However, much of the mountain was already surrounded by residential development, limiting the number of large animals found in the park to this day. Smaller animals including cottontail rabbits, lizards, Harris antelope squirrels, a variety of birds and snakes (including venomous rattlesnakes) are regularly encountered.
Plant species found at Camelback Mountain are typical of those found in the lower Sonoran Desert and include saguaro, barrel, hedgehog, pincushion, jumping cholla, christmas, staghorn, cholla and prickly pear cacti. Tree species include palo verde, mesquite and ironwood, along with the ocotillo plant.