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A Mountain Challenge

"A" Mountain Challenge 

Returning in Spring 2025.

Are you ready to take on the Challenge? Test your limits, earn prizes at each milestone, and support Downtown Tempe merchants!

The more you climb, the more prizes you earn – you might even win the drawing for the Grand Prize Staycation package!

How It Works

  • The “A” Mountain Challenge is an annual 7-week hiking challenge beginning on March 10, 2025 and ending on April 30, 2025.
  • Hike up Downtown Tempe’s “A” Mountain a total of 40 times to complete the Challenge – you don’t have to do it all at once (unless you REALLY want to challenge yourself!)
  • To join, register by April 15, 2025 and keep an eye on your email! You will receive a link to log your climbs & all updates on T-shirt and prize pickup times.
  • Once you’re registered, it’s time to climb! Log your climbs after each hike to reach the milestones and earn prizes. 
  • Don’t forget to pick up your milestone prizes! See milestone prizes and pickup dates below.
  • Enjoy the views, stay on the trail, do not disturb the landscape, and leave no trace! Help us keep Tempe beautiful!


T-Shirt & Prize Pickup Dates

All pickup date for the 2025 challenge are TBD.

Milestones & Prizes

Each time you hit a climbing milestone, your name will be entered to win the Grand Prize Staycation package! 

  • Complete Challenge Registration: Custom-made high-quality T-Shirt
  • Complete 4 Climbs: Custom sticker + Grand Prize entry
  • Complete 10 Climbs: $5 Gift Card to a Downtown Merchant + Grand Prize entry
  • Complete 25 Climbs: $5 Gift Card to a Downtown Merchant + Grand Prize entry
  • Complete 40 Climbs: $5 Gift Card to a Downtown Merchant + Grand Prize entry

Mini Challenges

Be the first one to reach the milestones and win bonus prizes! You can conquer the milestones as an individual or as a team.

Individual

  • Be the first to complete 4 climbs: $5 Gift Card to a Downtown Tempe Merchant
  • Be the first to complete 10 climbs: $5 Gift Card to a Downtown Tempe Merchant
  • Be the first to complete 25 climbs: $5 Gift Card to a Downtown Merchant
  • Be the first to complete 40 climbs: $5 Gift Card to a Downtown Merchant

Team

  • Be on the first team to complete 25 climbs: $5 Gift Card Per Team Member
  • Be on the first team to complete 40 climbs: $5 Gift Card Per Team Member


Where Should I Park?

Mission Palms Parking Lot sponsored by Tempe Mission Palms Hotel: All registered participants will receive a code via email to park for free from 5AM - 9AM at this lot.

201 S Ash Garage: This lot is FREE if entering Monday – Friday after 6PM and exiting before 6AM. The garage is FREE all day Saturdays & Sundays (excluding special events).

On-Street Meters: There are 400+ on-street meters in Downtown Tempe. Rates vary by location & time. All on street meters are FREE on Sundays & Holidays.


“A” Mountain Fun Facts

Did you know that the “A” on “A” Mountain used to be an “N?”

In 1918, the letter “N” was built on the mountain by Tempe Normal School’s senior class. When the school’s name changed to “Tempe State Teacher’s College” in 1925, the “N” was transformed into a “T.” The “T” stood strong for three short years until the school once again changed it’s name to “Arizona State Teacher’s College.” A decade passed before the first sighting of the “A” appeared. The letter was originally made from loose rocks in 1938 but was later destroyed by vandals with dynamite in 1952. In 1955, it was recreated using reinforced steel and concrete and stands 60 feet tall from top to bottom. All these years later, students at ASU are still involved with the larger-than-life letter. If you ever see the “A” change colors, you have students at ASU to thank! Each year, they paint the “A” white to symbolize a fresh new start to the academic year before painting it back to gold following the season’s first football game. Today, a variety of organizations paint the “A” to bring awareness to their causes.

How tall is “A” Mountain?

The highest point of “A” Mountain stands 1,496 feet in elevation and the base stands at 1,150 feet in elevation.

  • Camelback: 2,707 ft. = 4 times | Prize: A Mountain Swag
  • Humphreys Peak: 12,633 ft. = 10 times | Prize: $5 Gift Card to a Downtown Merchant
  • Mt. Rainier: 14,411 ft. = 25 times | Prize: $5 Gift Card to a Downtown Merchant
  • Mt. Everest: 29,032 ft. = 40 times | Prize: $5 Gift Card to a Downtown Merchant AND Entry Into the Grand Prize for a chance to win a Downtown Tempe Staycation Package.

There are several ways to start your hike and only one way to finish it. Try out new routes to get to the peak! The climb starts at the base of the mountain and ends at the very top.


Native American Land Acknowledgement

We would like to acknowledge that Tempe Butte and the land surrounding it is sacred to local tribal communities and is part of the ancestral homelands of the O'odham (Pima) and Piipaash (Maricopa) peoples. Tempe Butte is known as Oidbaḍ Do’ag (oyd∙bət daw∙ahg) in O’odham and Xwe Nykuuly (khwe nyə·kool) in Piipaash.

You can find the City of Tempe’s resolution recognizing the lands that comprise present-day Tempe as being culturally affiliated with the O'odham and Piipaash at the Native American Land Acknowledgement. The land continues to be spiritually and culturally important to these communities and we ask that you respect the butte as you enjoy the views by staying on the trail, not disturbing the landscape, and leaving no trace.

Questions? Email rachel@downtowntempe.com.

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