Pima Canyon Trail

MODERATE 18 reviews
#3 of 9 trails in

Pima Canyon Trail is a 4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Tucson, AZ that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, trail running, rock climbing, and horses and is accessible from September until May. Horses are also able to use this trail.

4.0 miles 738 feet Out & Back

hiking

rock climbing

trail running

horseback riding

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

over grown

rocky

scramble

no dogs

Located at the Northwest side of Tucson on the edge of front range of the Santa Catalina Mountains lies the Iris O. Dewhirst trail. Also commonly known as the Pima Canyon Trail #62. This well traveled and well known trail is popular among trail runners, hikers, and day trippers of the Tucson area. Though the stream in Pima Canyon is dry for most of the year, it supports an excellent example of a desert riparian habitat located conveniently close to the Tucson metropolitan area. Unfortunately, that accessibility has resulted in significant overuse of this beautiful and fragile area, especially during the winter, its season of highest use. From the trailhead, located among suburban ranchos, the trail ascends a V-shaped notch carved along the south face of Pusch Ridge. Views down the canyon get better as you climb, encompassing the city of Tucson as well as distant mountains and valleys. The riparian area on the floor of the canyon provides excellent birdwatching for a wide variety of resident and migratory species that make use of this most productive of all desert habitat types. Other desert creatures you may encounter in this area include javelina and jackrabbits, but the real viewing prize of Pima Canyon and the entire Pusch Ridge area are the desert bighorn sheep that maintain a surefooted existence here among rocky crags and rugged canyons. Beyond Pima Spring, the trail becomes steeper and harder to follow as it continues to climb to the upper slopes of Mt. Kimball. Incentives for persevering here are good views of Window Rock and Cathedral Rock. Trail #62 ends at its junction with the Finger Rock Trail #42.

hiking
4 days ago

Great hike out and back, good amount of vegetation, even cottonwood trees in one section of the trail, easy to lose the trail, but not difficult to pick it back up again.

25 days ago

Beautiful trail, with some welcomed shade in the canyon. Diverse scenery and easy to navigate.

hiking
1 month ago

Really enjoyable moderate hike. A bit rocky in the beginning but not steep. Scenery beautiful and lots of saguaros. Near the turn around was quite overgrown and too many trees and ferns for my liking in the desert. The walk back has beautiful views of the canyon. I would definitely go back again when in Tucson.

4 months ago

July2016 - Beautiful scenery. No water in the washes yet. Desert is green and gorgeous. As you get into the valleys, you'll see big lush trees. Good variety of scenic changes. Path was easy to follow - a tad Rocky. Nice hike.

hiking
5 months ago

5 months ago

hiking
8 months ago

Length and elevation was easy. Too many rocks for my taste. I prefer to walk/hike at a brisk pace and the rocks slowed us down considerably.

hiking
8 months ago

Great hike. Great views. Sunny, but once in canyon all shade. First 30 minutes mostly rocky and stones. But following that nice path.

hiking
9 months ago

What a beautiful trail, great views throughout. Went for an afternoon hike and caught the sunset on the way back. There were quite a few people on the trails.

hiking
11 months ago

The trail is pretty overgrown with tall grass, lots of snakes too. Watch for cairns and bring a GPS if you want to make it to the top easy. Beware if you are trying to connect over to Mount Kimball after reaching Pima Saddle, the trail is precarious and not marked.

During the summer months this trail seemed to be a few degrees hotter than Tucson. Like a little oven inside of another oven :)

1 year ago

Agreed, the trail can be difficult to follow and stay on.

1 year ago

hiking
1 year ago

It was just okay. Ended up getting lost on the way back because the trail was confusing. Overall it was extremely beautiful.

hiking
1 year ago

3 stars because the trail is a bit overgrown as you get further in. Definitely one of my favorite hikes though, as you get so many different angles and views of the the canyon, the peaks and even Tucson as you gain more elevation. I have not yet finished/summitted the hike, as it is quite a long trek and have not yet had enough time put aside to do it (it also tends to get hot pretty fast in early fall/late spring). The first time I did it we almost got to the saddle, but at one point we had to turn back as my dog was growling at something we couldn't see, and at that point we were pretty tired anyways. NOTE- dogs are NOT allowed on this trail, but we had already gotten there and by that time we just said ahhh f*ck it.

hiking
1 year ago

lots of diverse views

trail can be hard to follow watch for cairtns

hiking
2 years ago

The trail listed here is not Pima canyon. The Pima canyon trail is further east as marked on the underlying map. There are 3 trails that start here, Fingerrock, Pontatoc Canyon and Pontatoc Ridge trails all start from the point marked. The 6 hours to do 7 miles round trip does sound like Fingerrock

hiking
4 years ago

Hiked 3.5 miles in and it took me 6 hrs. 83 degrees a little warm but not to bad we did have a nice breeze. The trail is over grown in places so I suggest long pants and long sleeve shirt. My arms were a bit bloody from the bloody trail.