Brown Mountain Trail via Brown Mountain Picnic Area

MODERATE 81 reviews

Brown Mountain Trail via Brown Mountain Picnic Area is a 3.9 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Old Tucson, Arizona that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from September until May. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
3.9 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
659 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dog friendly

kid friendly

birding

hiking

horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

no dogs

1 day ago

This is a beautiful trail and a fantastic way to see the Tucson mountains. Fairly dense saguaros, varied terrain, and gorgeous views. My only complaint was that I saw several dogs which are clearly prohibited as stated on the sign. Now, I am a serious dog lover and honestly don’t mind them out there, but there were many piles of poo on the trail so either someone’s not picking up after their pets and/or there are some critters about that could seriously harm your pet. Be cautious and courteous if you’re going to bring Fido.

6 days ago

Hiked from Gilbert Ray Campground. Trail to top of Brown Mountain then loops back to parking area. Great views.

hiking
9 days ago

Enjoyed this desert hike in the different cactus. Elevation was not taxing. The trail was fine, but you needed to watch your step. Beautiful 360 view from the peak.

hiking
24 days ago

Really enjoyed this hike. We went counterclockwise on the loop so all the more difficult stuff was at the end.

1 month ago

This trail is NOT open for dogs! Was very disappointed after driving to the trailhead to discover that trails in the Tucson County Mountain Park are not open to dogs except service dogs. Really too bad!

hiking
1 month ago

Done this trail a few times before, and again on NYD this year. Nice mix of up and down for one half, and pretty level for the other. It's a good trail to stay in shape during the week. Takes between 1.5 and 2 hrs, I would think... I start at the trailhead off McCain loop road to the E of the route shown here (The little black dotted line coming off the middle of the white road just below Kinney Rd and meeting the trail). I do the peaks first. Nice views of surrounding desert, and really nice to start just before sunrise. It's pretty much murder in the summer, like everywhere in Tucson, but if you get an early start, or go on a cloudy monsoon day, it's every bit as enjoyable. 3 stars only because there are a million hikes like this in AZ...Extra star for convenience to Tucson, making it achievable during the work week. :)

2 months ago

5 stars = as good as it gets!
There may be better trails, but this novice has yet to encounter them. I feel accomplished after this hike!

Leading up to this trek, I conditioned on 6 previous trails (including 1 trip up Tumamoc and 2 trips along the base of this mountain—between picnic areas). This was a challenge for me, as I have chronic joint pain (mainly knees). That said, I was able to complete the loop with relatively little pain. (However, I use trekking poles, take turmeric and fish oil daily & take Aleve as needed for pain.)

FYI: there are 4 peaks (maybe it was 3, but it seems like there were 4) along this ridge, so keep that in mind, if you are a beginner like me.

TIPS: I recommend starting at the Brown Picnic Area and hiking clockwise back to the trailhead.. There is a RR and water at the 1/2-way mark: San Juan Picnic Area. One could even hike with a buddy and park one vehicle at each picnic area, if need be.

hiking
2 months ago

I really enjoy this hike! I have hiked along the wash (at the base—between picnic areas) twice now. The next time, I am determined to climb to the top and complete the full loop! (I have had to ease into this hiking season, due to chronic joint pain.)

TIP: If you begin at the Brown Mt Picnic area, and want to hike out to the San Jain Picnic Area (where there are RR’s and a water fountain) and back, be sure to veer to the right at The Headless Saguaro. Veering to the left will take you to the top of the mountain.

hiking
3 months ago

If you're looking for something that requires effort, this is not your hike. This is a peaceful meander, thoroughly meditative, in and around beautiful cacti and marvelous views.

hiking
4 months ago

Simple, easy to follow trail once you reach the hills with nice saguaro views. Not as breathtaking as the canyons but I imagine this sunset beats all others (went during the afternoon in October)

4 months ago

Beautiful! If you walk westward down the wash there are stunning purple rocks for quite a ways.

hiking
9 months ago

Unless you hike more than two times a month, this trail is not easy. It is poorly marked to start. We ascended the west flank from a rather hard to figure path. A large wash has to be crossed w/o signage. The trail is very rocky, with loose debris as you go. Not for tennis shoes or preteen or dogs. The views and Saguaro cacti are outstanding. When descending the east side, the colored rock is very cool looking but very difficult to proceed downhill. I agree that the trail should be traveled counterclockwise.

10 months ago

Nice ridge hike

11 months ago

Great trail. Beautiful views. Not very well marked in the valley section. We built a couple of cairns to try to help others out.

hiking
11 months ago

Good easy walk with great views of the towns below and landscape all around. Easy walk but good cardio in places.

hiking
11 months ago

Good easy walk with great views of the towns below and landscape all around. Easy walk but good cardio in places.

hiking
11 months ago

Good easy walk with great views of the towns below and landscape all around. Easy walk but good cardio in places.

hiking
11 months ago

Good easy walk with great views of the towns below and landscape all around. Easy walk but good cardio in places.

hiking
Thursday, February 16, 2017

Good easy walk with great views of the towns below and landscape all around. Easy walk but good cardio in places.

hiking
Thursday, February 16, 2017

Good easy walk with great views of the towns below and landscape all around. Easy walk but good cardio in places.

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