Soldier Trail

HARD 17 reviews
#4 of 9 trails in

Soldier Trail is a 5.1 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Tucson, Arizona that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible from September until May. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

5.1 miles 1935 feet Out & Back

dog friendly

hiking

waterfall

rocky

Beatiful canyons, challenging hike This trail follows the route of an old road and power line from the Catalina Highway to the site of a now-abandoned prison camp. The camp is gone and the power line poles cut down. The trail follows portions of this old route and provides access to an excellent example of Sonoran desert habitat. As the trail winds up the mountain, it visits a few ridge tops that provide good views back toward the city before dropping into Soldier Canyon, where there are some picturesque waterfalls when the stream is running. The boulder-strewn cascades over which those falls tumble are pleasant to spend a few moments by even when they are dry.

hiking
5 days ago

Great trail with great variety of terrain. The initial three quarters of a mile are difficult with steep rocky ascent of about 750ft or so. After that the trail becomes more level while traversing grassland with some less arduous ascents to a saddle and eventually to where it ends, meeting other trails. The views are spectacular.

hiking
9 days ago

I highly recommend this trail if you are looking for a short hike with some good elevation gain. The path is relatively easy to follow and end of Soldiers Trail is very rewarding. The water stream has shaped a very unqiue water fall that is worth checking out. When you come to the clearing and hear water, all you must do is follow the flow of water and it will quide you to the cool rock formations. Added perk is that it's dog friendly so a portion of the hikers will have their cute furry friends along side. Arguably one of the best hikes in Tucson for dogs. If you do bring your dog, be sure to clean up and keep our trails clean. Thank you!

hiking
3 months ago

Amazing views, amazing trail!

3 months ago

This was a fantastic trail. The first mile or so is a steep incline with large rocks. There are parts where the grass hides the trail a bit, and it can get a little confusing. Great views and a nice change of scenery.

hiking
7 months ago

Beautiful little trail which takes you up into the Catalinas, through a small "valley" with a creek and some tall grass, then up and over a ridge to the nestled prison camp. near the camp ground, the trail splits; taking the left fork brings you through some beautiful slot canyons and nice climbs- go hang out with the climbers at the crags!

hiking
7 months ago

This trail is gnarly the first mile up, but the views are spectacular.

hiking
7 months ago

I LOVE this trail!! It is my go to if I need to clear my mind, don't have a lot of time, it's leg day, you name it. It's one of the first trails as you head up Mt Lemmon and by far it is not for the faint hearted.
I would rate the first mile as difficult, the rest of the way is a walk in the park. That first mile is almost entirely uphill with large rocks. You've texted about 1 1/4 mi when you get to the vista overlooking the canyon.
This can be a point to point however I usually hike it in and out. Also can make this a 3 mi if you continue from the vista and turn around once you've gone down to where you would begin trekking to some campgrounds to the East.
Plus this isn't heavily frequented, I like to take my pups and let them explore. This is also the ONLY trail I've been on that I've seen a Gila monster

7 months ago

Really good late Afternoon hike. Hit trail at 430 and was back in car at sunset at 730 nice and cool. Dog friendly but I'd say only for bigger heartier dog; this can be a beast hike for smaller dogs. Pretty steep and a lot of loose rock - kind of a pain for the first third of a mile but then the trail kicks in. Nice elevation makes good work out. Actually a good trainer for rim to rim since the elevation pitches are about the same (though nowhere near as long or far). Just a really good short workout hike with great views and low low traffic (at least on a weeknight).

hiking
11 months ago

Hard initially but worth the effort

hiking
11 months ago

I did this trail in October. Even though the first section is quite steep, it doesn't last long and the rest of the trail is more moderate difficulty. Prior writer about the grass over the trail is true, which would feel lovely in the winter without fear of snakes. At the end, we explored the prison area, which had an excellent display explaining the history. We also went a little extra (took a left up the wash) to a nice saddle where we had lunch and views to the west.

1 year ago

1 year ago

Stairway to heaven....without the stairs. Steep elevation starts through saguaros and transitions over and through a creek to a rock edge overlooking the bubbling stream and small water fall before climbing up through a grassy meadow like path to alpine heaven. Lots of water today in Jan., and snow and some ice, if you go early be cautious.

hiking
1 year ago

I did the hike on October 20th. Pretty cool trail! It gets pretty brushy/overgrown in some parts though and you can't see where you're stepping, which was a problem because I did run into a rattlesnake and nearly stepped on him because I couldn't see the trail very well. Be very snake aware while hiking this trail! Especially if you are alone, like I was.

hiking
1 year ago

hiking
1 year ago

I just hiked this last week and had a blast! I really liked that it is at the base of Mt. Lemmon so you don't have to do too much driving to get there. When people say the first 3/4 of a mile are tough it's the truth! I am in good shape and kept a very good pace but I was definitely puffing. That part is steep going uphill and quite rocky so bring good shoes.

The views are breathtaking and once you get probably about 1 mile to 1 1/2 mi there's a canyon that's also spectacular. We got to the camp site in about 2 hours or so, a little slower due to some of the other hikers but we made good time. We turned around at that point and made it back to our start which took less time.

There wasn't any water but we had amazing views and even ran into a Gila monster. Now one of my favorite trails! Go for it!!

hiking
2 years ago

LOVED this trail...the first 1-1.5 miles are pretty tough! Gorgeous views of Tucson and then when you get further down the trail there is great overlook of quite a few canyons. I saw people rock climbing which was awesome. I suggest this trail but be prepared for a tough hike

hiking
3 years ago

Great trail... gets you breathing hard from the get-go. A mile in is spectacular with cottonwoods and meandering creek.